We, Bryan Innes and Joanna Pearsall,
are the directors of Ecoshow NZ Ltd, now Trading as "The Garden Tool Store."
We noticed that good quality garden tools are getting increasingly difficult to obtain in this country, so we kept a look out for good tools from elsewhere.
So far we have:
Scythes and Scythe Equipment mainly from Schroeckenfux in Austria, but some from Falci in Italy ( the last places in Europe to still make scythe blades, they used to be in many villages)
Bronze tools, inspired by Viktor Schauberger, also from Austria. These have proved very popular, especially as the manufacturers (PKS Bronze) stand by their quality with the 25 year guarantee.
Glaser Engineering Tools from Switzerland are very well made and especially popular with market gardeners as they are very efficient tools that you can use without stooping. They include wheel hoes and attachments, oscillating hoes and seeders.
Grelinette (Broadfork) we have designed and had 2 styles made here in New Zealand. They are 4 and 5 x 300mm tine and 1.1m wooden handles
Japanese Tools from Saboten are well desgined tools made in Japan, awesome for all kinds of cutting and pruning.
Japanese Kama: twisted sickles, sharks (aka Flax cutter) and straight sickles
Falci, in Italy, supply us with Aluminium rakes, Shovels, Hayforks and other digging type tools.
The Ploskorez, low effort tools are made in Russia and are really good tools too. Mainly a variety of hoes.
Korean Tools: we have the Traditional Ho-Mi, a versatile garden digger, and a Korean sickle, which is a fabulous tool
Green wood work tools We still have a few bark scrapers, bill hooks left.
While travelling around Aotearoa we did not see any scything, yet this old skill was coming back (mainly thanks to Peter Vido) in Austria, Canada, USA and Australia. We found an appetite in the community for learning to scythe again, so decided to continue. We would love to meet some people who would like to teach scything, and we can train you up, supply the goods and co-operate in manifesting more scything in New Zealand
We listen to our customers and friends and try to obtain the best from around the world.
It is inevitable that the prices increase. We really try to keep this to a minimum, but freight, exchange rate and increasing cost of materials affects the costs. When not doing tools business we are develping our home gardens and orchards.
We are gardeners, builders, experimenters and enjoy being amongst people working together for similar visions.
Teaching permaculture design has occupied us since 1992.
We are interested is in "Reciprocity Clubs" by which groups of people can work together supporting each other to reach goals, without taking on interest bearing debt.
We were away in 2015 from May to November visiting tools makers, the International Permaculture Conference and seeing Gaudi's domes. We did lots of other things too, exploring parts of Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Italy, Austria, Germany Belgium and the UK.
Arriving back in New Zealand we moved home to our house in Coromandel, where have been busy renewing inside and out.
Outside we have been landscaping: making paths suitable for walking with wheelbarrows (we just bought an electric wheelbarrow- it is a game changer, especially if you live on a hill) We grow food on the terraces and in wicking beds. This season we have converted almost all our gardens to wicking beds. It saves a lot of water and hours of watering. We are still learning about what does well and what not so well.
Our Orchard is mostly smallish trees in Evergrow Bags. This is a learning curve too! We have had success with almost all the fruit at the beginning, but we discovered that other plants (eg native trees) that grow close by, can put their roots through the bags and pinch all the food and water, which makes our fruit trees look a bit sad! We have solved this by putting the treebags in wicking beds and they just pick themselves up and flourish. The nearby trees cannot penetrate the wicking beds.
We are enjoying planning and implementing a variety of ways to keep the weeds at bay while growing yummy food!
A major project is building a special shed (earth structure) for The Garden Tool Store, which has easy accress for the van and plenty of room for displaying and storing the tools, so we can get them out of the house- the living room, the bedrooms etc!
We occasionally have a stall at various markets, mostly near Auckland.
We are looking for others to run "Art of Scything" workshops. Let us know if you are interested.