New Garden Products

Tested and reviewed by Fred-in-the-shed

Updated 7th July 2018

(click here for new DIY products)

 

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Best Solar Feature Lights

Bosch 18v Long Reach Cordless Hedgetrimmer

Stihl Self propelled Cordless Mower

3 Way Tap Connector

Toughest No-kink Hose

Pressure Washers and Patio Cleaning Products

Tub Trug Trolley

Root Assassin Spade

 

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Solar Feature Lighting - New for 2018

Lighting for Effect - Not Performance

Over the last 17 years of testing products for this site I have tried so many solar fairy lights, solar Christmas lights, and all sorts of novelty lights.

Incredible 96 LED Flickering Flame Solar Torch Light

Solar Torch Lights, Outdoor Waterproof Flickering Flames

 Solar Torch Lights, Outdoor Waterproof Flickering Flames

 

Under testing since May 2017 - Amazing Solar Tiki Torch - Flickering Flame Effect!

I have 2 of these amazing lamps, these are the most impressive solar lights I have ever seen.

They come on automatically and look like real burning flames, visitors are really fooled!

Also the design is so effective they stay lit up all night most nights.

 

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Long reach Telescopic 18v cordless hedge trimmer

Bosch Universall Hedge Pole Review

Bosch Universal Hedge Pole, 18 V

 

Bosch Universal Hedge Pole, 18 V

Bosch AHS 50-20 LI 18 V Hedge Cutter

I am currently testing the new Bosch long reach cordless hedge trimmer.

This product runs off the same 18v Li=ion battery as my favorite hedgetrimmer the Bosch AHS 50-20 Li.

The long reach version comes with a shoulder strap but is still a bit of a beast.

If you are pretty strong you will have to take rests every 10 minutes or so but used sparingly this is a very useful tool.

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Self Propelled Cordless Mower

New for 2018 - Stihl RMA 448 TC

The latest and best cordless mower is this Austrian made Stihl RMA 448TC that I am currently testing on my lawns.  This model uses a 36v Li-ion battery from the Stihl Pro range and has 2 battery slots so you can have a spare ready if you need it. With two batteries it can cut up to 450m sq depending on the length of your grass and how level your lawn is.

Stihl batteries have built in gauge to check power levels

This is the biggest of the 5 Stihl cordless mowers with its 18 inch (46cm) cut and the fantastic folding, height adjustable, mono handle. This clever handle saves space during storage but also allows easy access to the grass box. Another innovative feature is the Eco mode motor that adjusts the blade speed to the thickness of the grass.  This increases the efficiency of the battery and enables the mower to cut larger areas as it done not waste energy.

Stihl mowers are the best quality and you can't buy them online as they are only sold from machinery dealerships. For this top of the range model the total price with a battery and charger will be around £650. Smaller models and different battery options are available and Stihl have hundreds of dealerships all over the UK.

One you have the battery and charger you can use it in many other Stihl Pro power tools like chainsaws and trimmers that are all available on their own.

 

Click here to see my special page dedicated to cordless mowers

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New 3 Way Tap Connector

The Hozelock Flow Max  has 2 connectors for hosepipes and a separate outlet on the side so that you can fill a can.

This is particularly useful if you are using water timers and don't want to disturb the outlets.

Also the water can outlet part can be moved to either side of the unit to suit your needs.

 Hozelock 3 Way Flow Max Connector

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The Strongest no kink- no twisting Hosepipe

To test the Everflow Hose  I parked my 1 ton car on it and also tried to kink the hose.

Despite this nothing stopped the water coming out!

During the 16 years I have been running this website and testing tools I have seen several hosepipes that claim to be anti- kink - twist resistant, crush proof,  long life, guaranteed forever but non have delivered the promise and the best one mysteriously disappeared.

Well know I have come across the Everflow hose that is made in the UK by Copely Developments

The hose is multilayered, a bit stiff and slightly heavy but from my tests so far is totally unstoppable.

The unique feature that makes the Everflow hose so un-crushable is that it has an internal baffle.

To test the hose I parked my huge Chrysler 300c on it and the water came through unaffected.

Previously I tested a Hozelock Ultra Flex Hose, it was very good and a bit more flexible.

 Hozelock  has  been making hoses in the UK for donkeys years and also have top class technical help and warranty support. They offer a range of qualities and lengths to suit your garden.

The Hozelock anti kink hose resisted kinking more than most and can be useful but it is not 100% unstoppable like the Everflow hose.

Remember when buying  plastic products! Buy  cheap - buy twice !

Everflow Hose

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BEST PRODUCT FOR CLEANING PATIOS

Patio Black Spot Remover 4 Litre for Artificial Stone

If you have a natural stone patio or one made from concrete slabs it is inevitable that after a while it will become slippery, lose its colour and eventually blacken. Some of this filth will be mould and slime but some will be black spot, which are tree spores that start to grow into the fabric of the stone. Due to this deep ingress blackspot cannot be totally removed by pressure washing alone.

In fact over use of a pressure washer can damage the surface of the stone, so I went on a mission to find the best way to clean a patio.

In May 2016 I discovered Patio Black Spot remover and tested it on my patio in Oxford  The main feature of the product is that you just spray it on, (undiluted) from a Hozelock type spray gun , leave it 30 minutes and then lightly pressure wash it off.

I found that within minutes of spraying a milky foam appeared on the slab surface and I could actually see the black spot dissolving. 12 months later my slabs are still clean whilst the trial ones that I only pressure washed are going black again. From this I conclude that the patio black spot removal fluid does a very good job.

During cleaning I managed to overspray onto some plants but these were not harmed.

The product is available in 2 and 4 litres containers. It is not cheap but is incredibly effective and will save you a lot of time and for a lot of people time is money!  The product is also made in the UK and has very good UK customer support.

 5L Pump Action Pressure Sprayer - use with water, fertilizer or pesticides  

 

 
 

New Range of Bosch Pressure Washers

This is the new Bosch AQT35-12 pressure washer.  I was not a big fan of domestic pressure washers in general as I have found most to be unreliable, difficult to use and a pain to store.

The new Bosch models are much smaller and lighter than previous models and with its on board tool storage and quick release fitting it is fun to use. The folding handle also makes storage easier.

There 2 models have different power outputs but both have folding handles for easy storage and are available with just the 3 way gun or with the full range of accessories.

 

 Kärcher K4 Full Control Pressure Washer

 Kärcher K4 Full Control Home Pressure Washer

Fredshed TEST Update

My Bosch AQT35-12 pressure washer has had 3years of  use and is performing very well.

It is a vast improvement on the previous model and I am happy to recommend it to Fredshed readers.

The optional patio washing hood does prevent your feet getting a bit wet but makes accurate cleaning work harder. My advice is too buy the pressure washer but invest in some good Wellingtons instead of the patio washing gadget.

 

New Product To Reduce Time Spent Cleaning Patios!

 

Pressure washing a patio is time consuming and messy so I am testing Roxil Patio Cream which claims to waterproof and protect the slabs so as to reduce the regrowth of mould and other nasties.  I am happy to put cream on my face and leather car seats but never thought of putting some on my patio!

So I cleaned a slab, let it dry and then brushed in the cream. Already it looks better than the non-treated slabs so I will report the progress here as time goes on.

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Lightweight Trolleys and Tubtrugs

My Mum with her Trug Trolley

The Fredshed recommended and approved Tubtrugs have been a boon to many gardeners since I featured them 17 years ago. Now their use can be enhanced by this superb little truck to enable you to easily move material and turn your Tubtrug into a lightweight alternative to a wheelbarrow.

I gave this sample to my Mum for testing and never got it back so we know this one is a winner!

 

Trug Trolley - Exclusive to Home & Garden Extras. This lightweight frame with sturdy wheels makes moving garden trugs, rubber buckets, etc, around the garden easy (Blue)

 Tubtrugs 42L Large Flexible 2-Handled Recycled Tub, Pistachio

 Tubtrugs 26L Medium Flexible 2-Handled Recycled Tub, Pistachio

 Tubtrug Flexible Micro: Red

 

Wheeled Truck To Lift and Move Heavy Pots

This excellent invention was known as the  Pot Mover and originally sold by Fort Wheelbarrow company.

I have had one for years and many readers have bought them and been happy with my recommendation so it is not really a new product but is back again after being discontinued for some years. To use the trolley simply tip the pot forward a little and slide the bottom plate under it. Then slide the top hook over the edge and you can lever the pot up and begin to move it. I can even lift very large heavy pots like this from my wheelchair!

 

 Wheeled Garden Plant Pot Trolley

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Which is the Best Spade to Buy for Digging out Roots?

Root Assassin Spade

Many readers tell me they break their forks and spades whilst digging out plants.

This is usually caused by having to use excess force because a root has been left and even the strongest tools will break or bend if levered hard enough.

The Root Assasin has downward facing sharp teeth to cut those roots and the long thin shape of the head gives easier access to those roots.

If you have large shrubs or a lot to remove I still recommend using a prybar as well as the Root Assassin because it is essentially a digging and cutting tool and not a levering tool.

 

 Root Assassin Spade   

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Spiral Auger For Making Holes For Planting and Fenceposts

Fiskars Quikdrill

 

 Fiskars 2320541 Size Small "QuikDrill" Gimlet - Black/Orange/Grey

 

 

 
 

The lightest cordless chainsaw at 3.76KG including battery

STIHL MSA 120c 36v BATTERY POWERED CHAINSAW

This is not the most powerful cordless chainsaw available but it certainly is the most well designed and efficient one.

It has all the features found on petrol chainsaws but it is much easier and safer to handle.

For more details see link below or your nearest Stihl dealer as these tools are not sold online.

Click here to see my special page dedicated to cordless chainsaws

 

 

Clipper Box - Lawn Edge Clippings Collector

This simple gadget clips to the side of your edging shears and collects the grass clippings.

If you have a big lawn this can save hours of clear up work over the season

Makes a neater, cleaner job for OCD types - I love it.

 ClipperBox - Attaches to existing garden shears to collect clippings

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ELHO GROW TABLE - BEST RAISED BED PLANTER
 

This well made plastic planter is ideal for slug free growing as it is available with a

ventilated propagator cover. This will protect your seedlings from the cold as well and can be taken off when your plants are larger.

The planter is around £30 and comes in 4 colours.

The lid is around £16 and is sturdy and UV stabilized, it is not the brittle plastic that you get on small propagators

elho XX-Large Grow Table

 

 elho XX-Large Green Basics Grow Table - Living Black

 elho 2X-Large Green Basics Grow House - Transparent

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Best Apple Collecting Tool

   

 Apple Wizard

   New Lightweight tool for picking up apples without bending!

If you have fallen apples and want a fast and easy way to collect them then this UK made tool is ideal.

It works like magic and I just love using it. The flexible stainless steel cage just gently opens and the apples roll in.

Makes a superb present for anyone with apple trees and will pay for itself if you can eat or store your apples faster.

This is a top quality product and the UK manufacturer offers a repair service should you need it.

 

 

 
 

 

 

MORE NEW PRODUCTS TESTED BY FRED

 
 

NEW STYLE COMPOSTER, WITH SUPER INSULATION

Latest news!- I have superb new compost bin!

The hotbox,  compost bin is a new design that speeds up composting by concentrating the heat from the decomposing food and plant material .

It is constructed of thick black Polystyrene that absorbs the suns energy and superheats the material inside.  There is a thermometer built into the lid to allow you to monitor the heat levels.

I am currently testing the Hotbox composter and am amazed at hot quickly the material rots down to allow you to add more and more. I keep the bin full to the top and have inserted a mixture of food waste, hedge and lawn trimmings, weeds and other plant material.

Over the last 17 years of running Fredshed I have tested many weird and wonderful compost bin and so far this is the best performer.

As I like to undertake long term testing and take into account the durability of products I will be updating the feature annually to show you my results.

Setting up my Hotbin

After 2 years use I am impressed with the performance of the Hotbin.

It has taken mountains of mixed material

If you mix some lawn clippings in now and again it helps to keep it hot.

The resulting compost is very good and easy to get at.

Check price of the Hotbin composter with another Fredshed partner site

Click to see other more traditional composting bins

 

 

 
 

Fiskars Best Selling Hi Tech Weed Puller

Is it any good?

I tested the Fiskars Weed Puller  on soil and lawns

It is great for the larger, deep rooted weeds, no use on small weeds.

It can be fun and a bit addictive to use in the right conditions.

NEW LIGHTWEIGHT VERSION - USE LINK BELOW

 Fiskars Light Weed Puller - Black

If you watch TV then you probably will have seen the advertisement for this "new wonder tool" to make weeding easier than ever. As part of my work I have been testing weeding gadgets over the last 20 years and have tried most of them.

The important thing to realise about weed pulling gadgets is that there are many different types and sizes of weeds and none of the gadgets can cope with them all. Another reason for this is that weeds will be located in different soil types or even lawns.

Compared to most of the ones I have tested I can say the Fiskars weed puller is pretty good at pulling out the larger weeds. It is made from very tough but light fibrecomp material. You will need to have reasonable eyesight and hand eye co-ordination so that you can locate the jaws of the tool around the weed. Once located you press down with your foot and lever the handle backwards to remove the weed.

The tool is described as a lawn weed puller but I found it to equally useful on soil. Wherever you use it remember that a large weed will leave a large hole so have some soil ready to fill in if it is your lawn.

 

 

 
 

Increase the Capacity of your Wheelbarrow 

 

 Wheelbarrow Booster

This simple and cheap product is so useful and can save you lots of effort if you are moving large amounts of material by wheelbarrow.

It is made from strong polypropelyne with stretch elastic along the bottom that is designed to fit different sizes of wheelbarrow.

It is easy to fit and very effective for lighter bulky material. It can be taken off and stored separately when not required.

At around £12-£13 this clever British invention featured on Dragons Den and is a must have for every wheelbarrow owner!

 

 

 
 

 

 

LATEST ROBOT MOWER

WORX Landroid Wi-Fi Enabled Robotic Mower

I spotted the latest Robotic lawnmower at the Hampton Court Flower show.

Over the last 16 years I have tested many robot mowers and found most of them quite hard to program.

This one can be totally set up and controlled from your phone and does not even have an LCD screen for me to swear at.

Any programming can be overridden, which is good as I know that all these clever gadgets are only as good as your Wifi signal.

The main downside with Robot mowers is that most of them can't cut to the edge so you need another mower or trimmer to finish the job.

This is due to safety rules and the nanny state!

This new Worxs Landroid as a unique blade design that cuts almost to the edge and only leaves a 2.5cm strip to deal with.

 WORX WR110MI 20 V S700 "Landroid" Wi-Fi Enabled Robotic Mower - Black

 

 click here for my page on cordless and robotic mowers

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If you found my advice helpful and would like to support my work, please return to this page and use my links when purchasing your tools.

Also any other products bought from Amazon at the same time will produce a small commission that helps cover my hosting costs.

 

Or if you prefer, you can make a small donation using the PayPal button below.

 Thanks - Fred

 

 

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USE LINKS BELOW TO FIND MORE GARDEN AND DIY TOOLS

 

 

GARDEN TOOLS

 

Chainsaws

Digging Tools

Forks and Spades

Grass Trimmers

Hedge Trimmers

Hedge Shears

Hoes and Weeding

Lawn Tools

Loppers

Mowers

Pruning Tools

New Products

Rakes

Secateurs

Scaryfiers

Shredders

Watering Equipment

 

DIY AND OTHER PRODUCTS

 

 

 

 

 

Cordless Drills

Pick Axes and Crowbars

Screwdrivers

 

Solar Garden Lights

LED Bulbs

 

New DIY products

Builders bits

Sanders

Torches

Vacuum Cleaners-cordless

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                  © Fred Walden 2018