Thursday, June 30, 2011

Five Years Ago Today: A Little Scuffle in the Garden

Thai pink egg tomato patch after about three minutes with the scuffle hoe.

Back on June 30, 2006, a month and a half after declaring myself to be Baby Cary's mother, I declared my love for the scuffle hoe in this post: How To Use a Scuffle Hoe to Weed the Vegetable Garden - and Why I Love Mine So Much.

It was far from love at first sight for me and my scuffle hoe, but the hard won feelings of affection have endured, and after all these years, I'm still enamored with it.

This little old garden tool isn't put into service that often (mostly because the weeds in my garden seem to go from two inches high to two feet high in about an hour), but it always does its one job well.

Do you use a scuffle hoe? Any tips, techniques, or amusing stories to tell?

©, where we're very big on mulching but are still always needing to do some weeding.


  1. Yuh-huh on the weeds. Also, somewhat clay-y soil that become rock-hard in any small dry spell. Every year I try the scuffle hoe. Every year I dislike it. My MiL keeps telling me it really works well if it's used, like, EVERY DAY to keep the soil worked up and the weeds tiny. That does not happen. And so the scuffle hoe always loses out to the traditional, sharp-edged hoe with which I can whack the heads off of the tall weeds I usually end up with.

  2. I have never heard of a scuffle hoe but think I need to. My backyard maple trees spread their wonderful seeds everywhere and they have grown into annoying baby maple trees in my pumpkin patch.

    Thanks so much for the tip, Farmer Susan!

  3. keepin an eye out for that tool! thanks for sharing :)

  4. Hi Susan -

    Just looking through your blog/site for the first time and enjoying it very much. I also attempt to keep a garden journal but am not as diligent as I mean to be...and besides, it's so hot and dry in Oklahoma right now, there's not much to write about but bad news!


  5. We have at least 4 of these that we use here on our farm..Except we call them stirrup hoes. Its the only thing our gardeners use. and by the way, I love your site.

  6. We just bought a scuffle hoe. I have never used one before but saw some Master Gardeners using it and thought I would give it a try. I will let you know how it goes. I have some weeds that need attacking as soon as the rain stops tomorrow.

  7. hi
    I just stumbled upon your wonderful site. It is so full of information that I have to visit it more often to get the many growing tips you have provided for amateur gardeners like me .
    I have a small garden where I grow some veggies and flowers and I have put up a few pictures of my garden in my blog at

    I will be delighted if you visit it at your convenience

    I have not grown beetroot so far but based on your tips I plan to grow them now. Is aragula similar to radish?

    I am from Bangalore the "Garden city" of India


  8. I read about the scuffle hoe last year on your farmgirl fare blog, and it is now my favorite garden tool!
    I mulch my garden with grass clippings (donated from a neighbor with a riding lawn mower- I mulch mine back into the grass) and the scuffle hoe takes care of any little weed that pops up. I even posted photos of it on my facebook page! It's a wonderful little tool! I even recommended it to my doctor who was frustrated with handpicking all the weeds!

  9. The scuffle hoe- Didn't know what it was called- but yes- I love it- I also seem only to use it effectively in early spring as by now the weeds seem to get away from me- but it is by far my favorite hand tool (besides my hands:) I inherited mine from my Husband's Grandpa- unfortunatley he passed away before I started really gardening- so I can't get any tips from him- but his old tools are the best- imbued with a little greenthumb spirit!

    great posts!


March 2013 update: My apologies for the inconvenience - I know word verification is a pain - but I've had to turn it on to help stop the ridiculous number of anonymous spam comments I've been getting every day. Thanks for your understanding.

Welcome to! Thanks so much for taking the time to write. While I'm not always able to reply to every comment, I receive and enjoy reading them all.

Your feedback is greatly appreciated, and I especially love to hear about what's going on in your own garden. I know, too, that other readers also delight in reading about your garden successes, failures, helpful tips, and lessons learned. Feel free to leave comments on older posts!

I try my best to answer all questions, but sometimes it takes me a few days to get to them. And sometimes, I'm sorry to say, they fall through the cracks, and for that I sincerely apologize.

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