If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.

- George Washington

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Pitchforking Heaven

I posted a short while ago about a tool that was excellent because it simply worked, my splitting maul. I have been doing a lot of moving leaves about recently, and another tool that shines with sheer functionality is my pitchfork. As I understand it, a pitchfork is any fork with a long plain handle and thin, widely-spearated tines or prongs. However, Anna says that what we have is known in Pembrokeshire as an 'evel' (pronounced 'evil'), which has four tines, as opposed to a hayfork or baling fork, which has only two. Since I rather like having something in the shed that I can call 'evel', that's what it is.

Like the maul, it just works. I dump piles of leaves in a far corner of the garden and then set up the incinerator. The evel will transfer leaves from the pile to the flames most efficiently, with very little effort, and is capable of getting almost all of the leaves from the grass, leaving only a few to be picked up by rake and then by hand. The curve of the tines means that it slides under what you are picking up without digging into the ground, and their wide separation means that they don't clog up.

It's easy to use, it works brilliantly, it's effortless, and like the maul it has no moving parts. This one is a modern one, made by Bulldog, and the vibrant yellow handle makes it easy to find in a pile of garden rubbish, but one day I want a proper one. A really old one.


  1. I'm shocked that you would use such a manual appliance when petrol driven garden blowers are available that make noise, burn hydrocarbons and are generally completely useless!

  2. I once had a Black and Decker leaf vaccuum thing. It was spectacularly crap. It worked fine, but the collecting bag was about the size of a football, so it needed emptying about every ten seconds. Not a serious device. A petrol blower would be good. Maybe next year ...

  3. could have been worse e.g. "hoover"


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