Tag Archives: Burgon & Ball

Garden Hand Tools Product Review Part 4: Hand Dibber & Widget

As promised in my previous post: https://stunningdahlias.wordpress.com/2016/04/25/my-gardening-hand-tools/ here I am going to review the garden hand Widger and Hand Dibber.

  1. Burgon & Ball Hand Widger
  2. Spear & Jackson Dibber

The Burgon & Ball (B&B) Widger  is endorsed by the RHS and measures Max width 3cm, overall length 33cm with an RRP of £9.95. B&B describe the product as a cross between a trowel and a dibber, this unique little tool will help in levering plants out of pots as well as planting seeds and seedlings.

The Spear and Jackson (S&J) Dibber has an RRP of £7.99 and a Handle size 5″. Spear & Jacksons website don’t provide a description for its use but a general Google search for Dibber states the following “A dibber is a gardening tool used to make bulb and seed planting effortless. You use a dibber to make holes in the soil. The result is consistent hole for seedlings, all at the same depth. It’s far better to use when planting stem or room cuttings, as you don’t damage the plant through forcing it into the ground.

I think these 2 products have a similar use, but I prefer the Widger as I feel as it has multiple uses.

After moving into my new house and garden, I accidentally dug up thousands of bluebells and daffodils, every time I dug a patch in the garden I would find loads of bulbs or pebbles in the sandy soil. I decided to naively just replant these bluebells in a range of places all over the garden in rows using the S&J dibber as I don’t like wasting plants and couldn’t face binning them. The tool was fantastic at making single deep holes in the poor soil without the hillside falling apart….however months later I would come to regret using the dibber tool to replant all those bluebells. Firstly I discovered most bulbs such as bluebells don’t look great in rows, they look better in clumps or bunches, secondly getting them back out after planting them with a dibber is near impossible! Of course that is no reflection on the tool….just think twice where you  decide to plant those bulbs in case you change your mind! I’m certainly wishing I hadn’t got carried away with tool and planted those bluebells everywhere!

I purchased the Burgon and Ball Widger after discovering it accidentally whilst browsing for other hand tools from B&B and thought it looked a rather intriguing tool! I liked the fact it could be used for planting seedlings. I always found it difficult to plant on seedlings from those black plastic multi-hole seedling trays. This widger tool does help get the seedlings out and more importantly helps replant the seedlings individually without damaging the long spindly root systems. It hasn’t perfected my seedling methodology, but it has helped and I probably still need to carry on experiementing with the tool to find its perfect use! what do you use yours for?

Over all the Burgon and Ball tools look well made and I am looking forward to purchasing more tools from their range as they seem to provide some niche quirky garden additions that other companies don’t.

Overall I found both the S&J Dibber and the B&B Widger handy, but I thought the B&B Widger had more uses and potential and is better made.

Next time I will be reviewing the last and final set of hand tools:

5.Part 5 Hand Fork and hand Trowels.

My gardening hand tools

I bought my new house with garden last May/June 2015 and bought a huge selection of tools from a range of famous gardening brands. I did some research and bought the larger items mainly from Bulldog and Chillington.  However I couldn’t really see a big difference between the hand tools so bought these from a range of companies. 1 year on I have binned a number of items which have been damaged or broke, accidentally put some in the green bin and then these are what I have left below, so I thought I would review the performance of these tools over the last year since I bought the house and garden.

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Hand tools

I should state that the garden hadn’t been touched for 20 years and different parts of the garden have different soil types, some parts are sandy, some are hard clay and others are normal. The area had previously been used to mine sand, so obviously the garden is very sandy and has a ridiculous number or pebbles everywhere, so everytime I dig I always hit a pebble or two! The garden also contained a lot of buried concrete and rubble! An annoying amount. In addition the garden was completely overtaken by brambles, I must of progressively dug up over 200 brambles root balls and filled a skip and made endless trips to the tip….so as you can imagine my hand tools have been put through a lot! They have either hit pebbles, concrete or thick tough bramble root balls! Hence some of the tools haven’t withstood the test of time. I have dug up bin fulls of pebbles and boulders that I have now decided to make a dry river in order to use them and make a feature out of them 😀

Over the next few weeks I will be doing an in depth reviews of the different gardening tools as follows, so watch this space:

1. Part 1 Hand Garden Hoes

2. Part 2 Hand Patio weeder/ scrapers

3. Part 3 Hand shrub rake

4. Part 4 Hand dibber & Widget

5.Part 5 Hand Fork and hand Trowels

6. Part 6: Hand Secateurs and hand Cutting tools