“A Proper English Garden Fork”
The lady, identifiable as British by her accent, was obviously elated. “At last.” she cooed as
she picked up the three-tined fork from the table at our gardenshow booth, “a proper English
weeding fork. I have been unable to find one anywhere.” While not unknown on this side of the
Atlantic, the style of fork to which she referred is ubiquitous in Great Britain. It has flat tines that
are wide near the top, where they merge with the shank , and taper to pointed tips. The tool,
along with a trowel and a dibble, is one of a trinity possessed by nearly every English gardener.
(In the USA, the three most common garden hand tools are a trowel, three-tined cultivator and a
forked-tongue weeder evolved from an asparagus harvesting knife.) American made garden
hand forks tend to be made with thicker, round tines and are mostly used for loosening
soil to maintain tilth rather than for weeding. The tools are different enough that we make both
patterns. Our English style fork includes the best refinements of the type, including slightly
dished tines for increased rigidity , a slight lengthwise curvature and a recurved, forge-welded
shank of 7/16” steel rod that is riveted to the handle.