Montana resident Tuli Fisher not only elevates garden tools to works of art, he resurrects a lost craft. The practice of hand-forging tools using traditional blacksmithing methods may not be highly efficient, but it yields top-quality tools built to endure. (A gardener himself, Fisher describes his pieces as “heirloom quality,” sturdy enough to withstand generations spent digging in the dirt.)
To create these beautiful hand trowels, hoes and rakes ($54 each), the craftsman fires his forge to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit, putting hammer to anvil to shape each high-carbon-steel blade. Before the metal cools, he stamps various patterns into the surface—personal touches that make his tools one of a kind—then affixes the metal to hardwood handles he turns himself. Fisher also gets creative with recycled materials, using old parts from sickle mowers, salvaged sheet metal and rebar, and scrap leather from a sandal-maker to form and embellish each piece. More marvelous still, these tools are destined for the hands of garden enthusiasts who worship a simple, tangible and time-honored process of their own.