If you are using a drip system with a lot of plastic tubes spread across your garden, you know full well how difficult it is to weed around these lines. The best answer to your weeding needs is a collinear hoe. This is a long handled hoe with a rectangular blade at the end. The blade is narrow—about 1 inch and the width can vary from 7 inches to less than 4 inches. It is called collinear because the cutting edge is at the same point directly in line with the long handle. What this means is that when your blade encounters a weed and meets resistance, there is less torque or twisting force exerted on the handle. The main advantage though is that you can slip the thin blade under drip lines or soaker hoses where weeds frequently reside. Then too, since the blade is thin, there is very little disturbance of the soil. I would describe this as a hoe that you would use in more delicate situations. It is not effective in areas where you have allowed weeds to develop thick roots. If you watch the videos online demonstrating hoe use, you’ll see that they are working in rather tight areas around delicate plants like lettuce, and that the weeds are rather small.
If you google “collinear hoe”, you’ll readily find it along with videos on how to use it. You have a choice of blade width and either fixed or replaceable blade models. If you are hoeing in tight quarters, pick a narrower blade. I would opt for the fixed blade because I much rather sharpen a blade rather than order a replacement blade and pay $15. I also think that a fixed blade is easier to clean and has a smoother cutting surface.
There you have it—a weeding tool that can easily slip under drip lines and maneuver in tight planting situations. The collinear hoe costs around $40 and since it’s not on Amazon Prime, you’ll have to pay shipping as well.
Stan, The Tool Man