When it comes to gardening tools, none are as multipurpose as the cultivator.
With one of these at your disposal, you can do so many things to achieve a healthy and happy garden, including breaking up soil, weeding the ground, mixing in fertilizer and compost, or preparing the space for planting new things.
If you’re ready to take your garden from a simple hobby to something more serious, you’ll want a garden cultivator by your side. When things get tricky though, is discovering just how many options are out there and what each of them does, making your search suddenly very overwhelming.
What are the best garden cultivators on the market, though?
There are many features to consider when choosing a cultivator including its capabilities, strength, size, and power source. You’ll have to think about what jobs you want to do in the garden and how much area it’ll be working with, which can lead you to find a better match.
To make your search easier, we’ve assembled a list of our top picks in cultivators of all categories. With our recommendations, you’ll be able to revive your garden and keep it in top condition, and with one simple tool that can do it all.
Garden cultivators are unique tools, and they’re essential in all types of gardens.
Whether you’re into hobby gardening or take things more seriously, grow vegetables or flowers, or have a large or small space to work with, you’re bound to find the perfect fit with our recommendations for the best garden cultivator in every category.
Best Garden Cultivators – Reviews & Buying guide for 2021
Best Rotary Cultivator: Fiskars Extendable Rotary Cultivator
- Type: Rotary
- Weight: 9lbs
- Reach: 60 inches
When you’re looking for the best cultivator that’s built to last, this one from Fiskars is one of our favorites.
This hand cultivator can extend between 40 and 60 inches so you get the length you need, and it weighs just 9lbs in total so you have greater control and less user fatigue. For our favorite all-purpose cultivator, the Fiskars Extendable Rotary Cultivator is the way to go.
Customers loved its durability and strength, and this what gained it so many points above the competition.
Not only does it have a steady steel shaft that lasts a lot longer than wooden ones, but it holds a lot of power without having to do much work. When you need something to get into the stubborn soil below, this is the type of powerful beast you want by your side.
A potential drawback though was the extendable handle and how it didn’t seem to stay locked in at all times. While it didn’t affect how the cultivator worked, if you were one of the unlucky ones with a handle that won’t lock, there’ll be a lot of adjusting as you go until you can get it to stay in place.
When the handle is in place, it prevents backache and bending over, so this is an issue you want to get rectified quickly.
This issue aside, it seems the Fiskars Extendable Rotary Cultivator can do it all, and as a multipurpose tool, you’ll be able to aerate the soil, remove weeds, loosen soil, and add mulch and compost to the ground.
The device features six aluminum cultivating wheels that are designed to be rust-proof and enduring, and when you combine their strength with the 19-gauge steel shaft, it’s easy to see that it’ll last in your garden for a lifetime.
The Fiskars Cultivator has a removable center tine that lets you adjust how you want to use it which means it can be applied to more types of gardening configurations and planting seedling rows.
The device has been powder coated for comfort and durability, and it’s easy to push and pull through the garden thanks to the powerful and sharp tines that do its work.
When the job is done, simply hang up your Fiskars Extendable Rotary Cultivator in the shed, and its overall weight of 9lbs won’t be a bother.
The steel shaft ensures it won’t even bend, and because there’s nothing lightweight like fiberglass or plastic, you can go as hard as you need to in the soil without worrying if it can stand up to the force.
To equip your garden with the best small cultivator on the market, head to Amazon to find the Fiskars Extendable Rotary Cultivator.
Fiskars guarantees the quality of their goods with a lifetime warranty, which tells you everything you need to know about its strength, and makes it the best field cultivator we’ve found.
Runner Up: Rocklin Industry Rotary Cultivator Tool
- Type: Rotary
- Weight: 2.84lbs
- Reach: 60 inches
If your gardening needs are deeper than most, you’ll want the best tiller cultivator that can do the job. The Rocklin Industry Rotary Cultivator Tool is a powerful device, and made with longer spikes than most, measuring around 1.5 inches.
This allows you to get around two inches below the soil for the best aeration and mixing and is a favored choice by those who have these specific needs in their garden.
According to customers, the best thing about the Rocklin Industry Cultivator is how comfortable it was to use.
With most gardening work you’re spending a lot of time bent over or straining, so having a tool with an adjustable length and comfortable handle like this was a godsend. Compared to others, it easily gets the most points for how luxurious it was to operate.
On the downside though, some people found issues when they were trying to change the attachments and tines, and thought that it felt a little flimsy.
When not properly secured, it seemed they could fall out with ease. If you’re working particularly hard and not paying attention, this won’t be good at all, so be sure they’re fastened on properly before you get to work.
The Rocklin Industry Rotary Cultivator Tool is made with no plastic parts and you never have to worry about it rusting or breaking down like others. The telescoping handle can be adjusted between 40 to 60 inches to suit all types of users and their gardens, and it locks in place securely once you’ve chosen its height.
Although there’s plenty to love about this cultivator, the fact that it’s missing a manufacturer’s warranty or even a satisfaction guarantee from the brand isn’t the most comforting sign.
However, reviewers have a lot of great stuff to say about it, and it’s considered one of the toughest on the market with its hardened stainless steel construction.
As a 3 point cultivator, it’s good for all of your gardening needs, and it has scissor spinning tines that work all parts of the soil around it. The overall dimensions are 8 x 4.5 x 34 inches when it’s not extended so you can store it away with ease.
Although made of aluminum and stainless steel, it’s incredibly lightweight at just under 3lbs and easy to maneuver. Even those with limited physical abilities will find this easy to use, even if it’s not the most powerful of cultivators compared to others.
To get your hands on the Rocklin Industry Rotary Cultivator Tool, the best place to buy it is from Amazon. Unfortunately, there’s no warranty coverage from the brand. However, Amazon offers free returns for 30 days and free shipping, so you still get lots of extras when you purchase it from the online marketplace.
The Rocklin Industry model is a light but effective hand rotary cultivator and the perfect choice for small gardens that need a deeper reach.
Best Extendable Cultivator: Corona GT Extendable Handle Cultivator
- Type: Hand cultivator
- Weight: 1lbs
- Reach: 32 inches
If your garden is only small but you still need the convenience and comfort of an extendable tool, the best option is the Corona GT Extendable Handle Cultivator.
This is the best mini cultivator to suit small spaces and it has the option to adjust it from between 18 to 32 inches, to suit you specifically. Although small, it’s built tough and is easy to control even when the soil below is stubborn.
The best feature of the Corona Cultivator is the ease of use, which will be especially appealing to those who don’t want anything heavy or bulky.
You can easily drag it through the ground to aerate the soil, mix through compost and mulch, or help lively up the dirt, and it’s fully operational with just one hand and minimal lifting. There’s a soft textured grip on the end that reduces fatigue and ensures you won’t get blisters, even when working all day.
On the downside though, it’s not the largest tool, and won’t be ideal for every garden. This would be considered the best mini tiller cultivator at best, with a lot of customers finding it far too tiny for what they needed.
Make sure you check the measurements before you continue and look at the tines to see if they’re capable enough, otherwise you’ll be working a lot harder than you need to just to get the job done.
The Corona GT Extendable Handle Cultivator is built tough, even if it’s a lightweight device. The tool is made with heat-treated steel on each of the cultivator’s heads, so it won’t break even in stubborn soil.
The handle is made of lightweight aluminum that keeps the weight down but improves its durability, and it has a twist and lock feature to keep it securely in place as you use it.
The overall weight of the Corona Cultivator is less than one pound and it won’t cause you any fatigue to use, as long as you’re not bending over.
The entire tool has been coated with a rust-resistant chemical that keeps it in good condition, even if it gets wet. This is the type of cultivator you could leave outside without an issue, although optimal care is recommended.
The Corona Extendable Handle Cultivator features five separate heat-treated heads that get to work deep in the soil and because of the comfortable handle you can let them do all the work.
The overall dimensions are 26.5 x 3.75 x 1.5 inches so it’s a compact size cultivator compared to others and better suited for small gardens, and we don’t recommend trying to use it over larger patches of soil.
If you want a reliable and extendable cultivator to help in your small garden space, this one from Corona is our favorite. For the best small tiller cultivator that can extend to suit your needs, our number one choice is the Corona Extendable Handle Cultivator.
Best Hand Cultivator: Fiskars Hand Cultivator
- Type: Hand
- Weight: 8.2oz
- Reach: 4 inches
The Fiskars Hand Cultivator wins the award for best hand tool because of its size and power. No matter what you’re planting or doing, if you’re working in small rows or only have small patches to deal with, you’ll love how much control you have with this tool.
Compared to other cultivators that can feel flimsy or as if they’re not equipped to deal with the job, this tiny cultivator holds a whole lot of power and strength.
The coolest feature of this hand cultivator is its tines, which are capable of much more than they appear to be. Each designed with the strength that this brand is known for, they are about three inches in width when stacked up next to each other, and perfect for small garden beds.
They’re made of durable cast-aluminum which helps them get their strength, and means they’ll never snap off even when faced with the toughest soil.
However, customers didn’t like the special design of the handle, even though it was created to reduce wrist strain and fatigue.
Some more cushioning in this area would have been helpful so that when they were working hard in the soil, this strain was lessened. For such a small device it’s easy to overlook this feature but it’s important for the gardener using it.
The dimensions of the Fiskars Hand Cultivator are around 13 x 4 x 3 inches and it weighs just 8.20z. although it could use some improvement on the handle, it’s still incredibly lightweight, and even if you feel limited to what you can achieve in the garden, this is one easy tool that you’ll be able to work with.
The Fiskars Hand Cultivator is the perfect size to store in a gardening belt, and it has a hole in the middle of the handle so it can hang when not in use.
The tines and shaft are all made from one piece and they bury deep into the handle, so you can see just by looking at this cultivator that it’s been built to last.
Fiskars covers this tool with a lifetime warranty, which speaks volumes for the brand and how they manufacture their goods.
Shopping on Amazon gives you further choice about how many to buy as well, and if you’re looking for a discount because you plan on getting more than one, this is the place to shop. For each cultivator, you’ll save a few dollars, and considering how cheap they are already it can’t be beaten.
To equip yourself with the small but powerful Fiskars Hand Cultivator, head online to Amazon. Don’t be thrown off by the small package, as there is a whole lot of power in the Fiskars Hand Cultivator, and you’ll be surprised at just how much it can do.
Best 3 Tine Cultivator: DeWit 3-Tine Cultivator
- Type: 3-tine
- Weight: 10.4oz
- Reach: 24 inches
If a three-tine cultivator is all you need, you want to make sure those tines are worth it, and when it comes to the DeWit 3-Tine Cultivator, it is.
This is the tool of choice for people who have larger needs in the garden or would prefer not to operate a one-handed device, and it’s made with the hardened boron steel that they use on all of their gardening tools, so you know how strong it is.
Aside from its efficiency in the garden, this is a brand you can feel good about buying from, and customers loved how they put an emphasis on hand made products and eco-friendly tools.
If you’re trying to make a difference in how you shop and want to choose better quality gardening supplies, the DeWit 3-Tine Cultivator will make you proud.
On the negative side of things, it’s a little short on the width, and measures around 4 inches in total. If you have large areas to work with and prefer three tines, you may need to do some extra laps around, and there’s not a lot of space in between them.
A good gardener should establish the needs of their rows or soil before committing to a cultivator, and this one is no different.
This cultivator is around 24 inches long, and although it doesn’t have an adjustable handle, it’s more than enough for most people to work comfortably with.
The weight distribution is ideal and reduces fatigue, with DeWit taking special care to make this as supportive as possible for when you’re spending hours in the garden.
The overall weight is around 10oz which makes it very lightweight and easy to get control over, and it doesn’t take anything away from the strength of the tool.
The DeWit 3-Tine Cultivator has a P-grip handle that allows it to bend without breaking, which is such an important feature when digging deep in the soil.
You’ll be able to push and pull harder without fear of breakage and still enjoy the aesthetics of its ash hardwood construction. This tool is both beautiful and durable, and in line with the rest of the unique range from DeWit.
DeWit makes all of their products with a lifetime guarantee, and this cultivator is no different, so you can put your trust in them as a brand.
Their goods are made in Holland and they handcraft many of their products, as well as ensuring they’re designed and manufactured with eco-friendliness in mind. All materials used are sourced sustainably and it’s designed to last you a lifetime as well, so you’ll never have to purchase another cultivator again.
This is an expensive choice for a 3-tine cultivator, but worth every penny if you listen to the reviews. Amazon offers free shipping and returns, plus you’ll get DeWit’s lifetime guarantee, so it’s a purchase you can feel good about.
FAQs of Garden Cultivators
Garden cultivators are often confused with other gardening tools, and without knowing their many purposes, you might not realize just how important they are.
We’ve answered some commonly asked questions about these specialty tools so you can learn what they’re all about, and the difference they can make in your garden.
What is the Purpose of a Garden Cultivator?
There are a few types of cultivators with different purposes, but their general use is to loosen up the soil and prepare it for planting seeds, or help to mix things through it like compost and other products.
Some work in larger fields and others are operated by hand, depending on the size of the garden patch and what they’re going to be used for.
What to Look for in a Garden Cultivator?
Choosing a garden cultivator is made easier when you look at your garden’s requirements and choose one to match.
These tools are good for mixing soil and loosening it, but they should be large enough to suit your garden size and with the right design to reduce effort and discomfort for the gardener. The number and size of tines might also vary, depending on the width and depth you require.
Do I Need a Garden Cultivator or Tiller?
The garden cultivator is used for a few things in the garden like loosening and aerating soil and mixing through compost and fertilizer so that it’s spread evenly.
A tiller is better for hard and stubborn ground that needs to be broken up before other gardening tasks can be done, so you could use it before running the cultivator through it for the best results.
Can You Use a Cultivator to Remove Weeds?
The tines on most cultivators are thin, and although they can do a good job of collecting some weeds in the ground, in other cases they may just pass by them.
To effectively rid your garden of weeds, you can use a cultivator to loosen the soil around them which makes it easier to pull the weeds out, or apply a weed killer, so it can still be a helpful tool for the job.
What’s the Difference Between a Cultivator and a Rotavator?
A rotavator does many of the same gardening tasks as a cultivator but the way it moves through the soil is different.
A cultivator uses its rotating tines to work its way through, whereas a rotavator has wheels on either side of it that push it along. There are hand cultivators as well, that are operated manually, different from both of these typical designs.
The Best Tool to Revive Your Garden to Perfection
Although often confused with a tiller, the purpose of a garden cultivator is very different, and better suited to reviving a garden you already have and making it better.
No matter what size or style you choose, with one of these tools at your disposal, you’ll achieve healthier soil which means a happier garden and a better chance of things growing as you want them to.
Our recommendations for the best garden cultivators span all shapes, sizes, styles, and purposes, and there’s something here for every gardening need.
Investing in a cultivator can make a huge impact on your yard and bring back to life the plants and grass you thought were long gone, so it’s an essential tool for every gardener.