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Ron Finley’s 6 Essential Gardening Tools

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Apr 23, 2020 • 1 min read

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Ron Finley Teaches Gardening

Ron Finley comes from a place where much of what grows must force itself through cracks in the concrete. The “Gangsta Gardener,” as he’s known, hails from South Central Los Angeles, a neighborhood so often portrayed in film and on television as a harsh landscape of poverty, gangs, and endless drive-thru fast-food joints. Thanks to Ron, South Central is now also becoming known for its communally-managed organic fruit and vegetable gardens.

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Ron Finley Teaches GardeningRon Finley Teaches Gardening

Community activist and self-taught gardener Ron Finley shows you how to garden in any space, nurture your plants, and grow your own food.

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Ron Finley’s 6 Essential Gardening Tools

At a minimum, you’ll need to invest in a sturdy shovel and a pair of gardening gloves when you start your garden. But there are several other gardening tools of the trade that Ron relies on.

  1. Battery-powered or rechargeable cordless drill: A drill can be useful for making drainage holes when converting found objects to planters.
  2. Hand pruners: Use pruning shears to cut stems and branches up to half an inch in diameter.
  3. Hori hori: Use the stiff serrated blade of this narrow hand trowel to divide clumps of roots and make the process of weeding garden beds more efficient.
  4. Kitchen knife: Your standard kitchen knife can be useful for making precise cuts when harvesting vegetables.
  5. Potting soil scoop: This lightweight hand tool is an easy way to fill pots and planters.
  6. Pruning saw: A pruning saw small saw designed to access tight spaces when pruning trees and shrubs.

As you get more into gardening, you can add more garden tools to this list: long handle loppers, a pitchfork, garden scissors, a hand-held garden trowel, a digging fork, and a leaf rake. A wheelbarrow and a garden heavy-duty hose (rather than a watering can) are also immensely helpful.

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Grow your own food with Ron Finley, the self-described "Gangster Gardener." Get the MasterClass All-Access Pass and learn how to cultivate fresh herbs and vegetables, keep your house plants alive, and use compost to make your community - and the world - a better place.

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