Garden power tools/ mulching
I'm a new/first-time homeowner and I am completely ignorant to all things garden/yard related. I have a mower that was given to me that I am using right now, but nothing else to help maintain.I have 2 items that I am looking to get and was hoping to get advice/recommendations on both.
The first is an edger/trimmer combo and the other is a garden blower/vac. I know I want cordless as I hate messing with the gas and extra care required with the traditional units.
For the edger, I see mostly ones that use a string of some sort. I have seen a few that have dedicated blades like mowers do, which makes sense to me, but do not seem to be as popular/as much choice. Is there a reason for this? What are peoples experience when comparing both types?
For the blower/vac, most I see remark about being able to clean up hard surfaces. Well, I would like to be able to use mine to blow/suck up leaves from the actual lawn where most of them fall, not just the drive way. I would assume everyone else would like that too??!!...so what's the deal with that?...are there any that are designed for both? Is it a power issue or just a design thing?
Also, I am not opposed to investing into a brand that has interchangeable heads/attachments and picking up a few batteries to ensure I can use them all, one after the over. This is to eliminate overall cost and also to try and save space as my garage has limited extra space. Plus I would like to pick up a hedge trimmer and maybe other parts later to use.
Just FYI, I have about a half acre lot (if that makes any difference). So figure I don't want entry-level junk but am not trying to go all crazy either.
The one last thing I wanted to mention was about the flower beds. I am in a neighborhood mostly with retirees with all the time on their hands to manicure their gardens and gossip about how bad mine looks.The mulch that was there from the previous owner has mostly gone away. Personally, I don't mind if it's just straight up earth around the flower beds, but everyone else either puts mulch or pine straw down. I am not a big fan of either due to the upkeep and also the potential for inviting additional bugs in to the environment. Pebbles are out of the question, but have heard of rubber mulch. I realize that this is more expensive up-front, but wondered if it would pay off over time and wanted to know about people's experience on all of these fronts.
Thank you all in advance for your time!