how's weeding / new hoe

louisianagal(z7bMS)February 1, 2010

Well today was beautiful - if you were dressed warmly and stayed in the sun. So I had ordered a hula hoe, I've never used a hoe before. I can't see how it can work back and forth, it is so dull. So I had DH put a sharp edge on it with a file or grinder. I decided not to put an edge on both sides becoz I was going very close to stems and stalks of shrubs and perennials and didn't want to nick them. Even with the edge, it wasn't as easy as the ads and videos show. It seemed to work better in a sideways (sweeping) type motion rather than a strictly in front of you position and pulling towards you. The ground was very wet, even that didn't help. Granted, some of my weeds had rooted pretty good. And I found myself leaning down and chopping alot, which was not the idea of the long-handled hoe. There is just no substitute for getting down on my trusty little stepstool chair, and hand pulling, if you ask me. However I will continue to try and perfect my hoeing skills, and perhaps once I get control of the weeds, I can keep up with it. I really don't want to buy too many tools, but now that I've used this hoe, I can see that a circle hoe could work, and also a swan-neck one. The hoeing did not help my shoulder, with an old rotator cuff injury that's flared up recently....let me get some Aleve.

What say you about hoeing or weeding?


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I have the hoe my grandfather used, and I don't use it all that often. Like you, I think getting down a yanking those weeds up by the roots is better! I do hoe between rows in the vegetable garden, and use the hoe to make planting rows, but as a weeder it isn't much (hope granddaddy isn't listening!).
I've seen those hula hoes advertised and wondered about them. Thanks for setting my mind at ease about their usefulness!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2010 at 11:45AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Hula (or stirrup) hoes are best used in drier soils so that you can get the blade underneath the plant and under the surface of the soil and chop it off below the ground level. It should glide up and down readily, just under the surface. It will cut on both sides, slashing the weeds but not moving a pile of soil. It makes very short work out of clearing an area of weed seedlings, especially.

In my opinion, it's by far the easiest hoe to use, but you do need to have the right kind of soil for it. I think that anyone who has mastered the stirrup hoe prefers it over other tools.

I'm with you, however, on the hand weeding.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2010 at 4:21PM
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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

When I am weeding, it's more like going to war. I don't like the idea of leaving roots in the soil to regenerate more enemies...:) So, I like to kneel and pull, keeping a knife nearby to get deep under long tap roots.
That being said,it's been so WET all winter that I have done precious little weeding. If it weren't for mulch, I'd be done for for sure.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2010 at 1:41PM
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jusme_newby(5b North-Central MO)

I read some negative comments on the hula hoe , one of which complained it was shaped wrong. Instead of being flat metal, the cutter actually had a concave profile and the area where the blade meets the ground was straight rather than slightly convex. I found this rather confusing until it was further explained that the concave profile referred to the extruded shape of the metal, unlike, say, a knife blade that is flat with an edge on either edge. The Convex shape would meet the surface of the ground like a segment of a wheel. The person complaining got out a hammer and reshaped his to, what he determined was the correct shape and says it now works perfectly.
I recently ordered an, "Action Hoe" made by Ames. I do not yet have it but when I do, I will post again with my opinion.
You can see the hoe here:

Here is a link that might be useful: here:

    Bookmark   February 28, 2013 at 4:54PM
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I use a Cobra hook for weeding. It is good for getting those roots out, similar to simple hand pulling, but gives you a hand in getting them started. That is the main tool I use for weeding.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2013 at 6:16PM
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