Hori-hori: who uses them?

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by RLeClair, Dec 21, 2018.

  1. RLeClair

    RLeClair LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    So I've been thinking about taking a hori-hori into the field for a test spin, ultimately to replace my trowels. It seems like a Swiss army gardening knife. Apart from being concave for digging, it cuts roots, branches, sod, opens bags, cuts rope/twine, etc. The blade even has measurements for planting bulbs at proper depths. I like to keep my pruners hip holstered for ready access, and the hori-hori is generally sold with a holster. I imagine that it would be versatile enough that it would make a good companion to the pruners hanging off my hip.

    After many years working in horticulture for many different companies, I am a bit surprised that I have never encountered one. So my question is whether or not they are as good of a tool as they appear to be? What is a good brand?
     
    hort101 likes this.
  2. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Male
    Messages: 15,988

    There must be three to half dozen floating around the shop somewhere

    They get misplaced due to people not using them much

    A good multi tool and a set of felcos seems to be what everyone prefers
     
    RLeClair likes this.
  3. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,752

    We use hori hori knives everywhere at the horticulture garden where I am a volunteer. Japanese garden tool. The good ones are a bit expensive. The orange handle reduces the number lost in the bushes--somewhat. Digs out weeds, crabgrass and thistle. The good ones have a serrated back edge--you can make it act like a small saw if you have good stamina.
    https://www.amleo.com/leonard-deluxe-soil-knife-and-sheath-combination-kit/p/4752COM/
     
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  4. OP
    OP
    RLeClair

    RLeClair LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    One of the major uses that I envision is for hand weeding. While I'm pretty good and removing tap root weeds with the root attached, I invariable break a few roots. It seems like the hori-hori blade would be a quick way to pop them out of the ground.
     
  5. BigJlittleC

    BigJlittleC LawnSite Fanatic
    from Chicago
    Messages: 5,264

    I used to carry a hori hori. It has now been replaced with just a straight blade knife. I will still take it with me if I know I'll be doing a lot of hand weeding. Otherwise a knife is really all I need day to day.
     
  6. BigJlittleC

    BigJlittleC LawnSite Fanatic
    from Chicago
    Messages: 5,264

    If you have a knife you can slide it right down the root and pop them out just like a hori hori.
     
    RLeClair likes this.
  7. OP
    OP
    RLeClair

    RLeClair LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    That's a good idea. Plain knifes would be cheaper. I might have to do some side by side testing to decide if buying more hori-horis in the future is worth it, or if plain knifes work well enough.
     
  8. LawnVeteran

    LawnVeteran LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 275

    I’ve always wanted to use one but never needed it. I carry a straight blade knife with serrated edges I made longer at the bottom. I use it like a saw or popping out weeds. But the Japanese tool looks neat.
     

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