There’s nothing quite like the sight and smell of a freshly tilled garden. If you have a vegetable or flower garden, you know the importance of cultivating your soil before planting. Unfortunately, finding the right tiller for the job is not a one-size-fits-all affair, and it can be difficult to find the machine that will best suit your needs.
Tilers, also known as rototillers, help make cultivating your garden easier. These devices break ground by turning over the soil, killing weed seeds and opening up the soil to light, oxygen, and moisture. While a good tiller can help you prepare your garden for spring planting, the wrong tiller can result in endless frustrations and nightmares if it’s not cut out for the specific job.
Whether you have a large garden and are looking for a new tiller to replace your old, worn-out device, or if you are a novice gardener just starting from scratch, our roundup of the best garden tillers will help you shop with ease so you can maximize the yields of your garden this season.
Best Garden Tiller – Comparison
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Get The Most Out of Your Garden: The 10 Best Garden Tillers
1. Remington Homestead Garden Cultivator
This lightweight tiller is a great choice, providing you with some serious assistance in cultivating your garden. It is gas-powered and not only helps to loosen the soil but also performs the vital role of weeding your garden as well. With four 8-inch steel tines that each cut five inches deep, this machine digs deep to get the job done.
Although this tiller does require some assembly, it is easy to put together and only takes a few minutes to do so. All you need to do is put together the shaft and handlebar before putting those items, along with the wheel assembly, onto the main tiller machine. At only 23 pounds, this is a lightweight tiller is a great option for both small and large gardens. It is easy to maneuver in any space.
The Remington Homestead Garden Cultivator is gas-powered, meaning you don’t need to attach a cord, worry about a battery, or have to worry about any other limitations when operating this machine. Remember to mix the gasoline and oil before adding it to your machine. This tiller tills at a somewhat lower depth than you might be accustomed to, but it will be rare for you to need to till deeper than that in most cases.
- Lightweight and portable with a sleek design and folding handle
- Helps to weed your garden as well as to cultivate it
- Powered by gas so you don’t have to worry about electricity
- Easy to assemble
- Easy to assemble
- You must mix gasoline and oil before adding them to the tiller
2. Schiller Grounds Care Mantis 2-Cycle Tiller Cultivator
This heavy-duty tiller offers the best of both worlds, being both lightweight and easy to maneuver as well as durable and powerful. It comes with ergonomically designed sure-grip handles that help reduce the strain on your hands while you operate this powerful machine – a great feature when you consider the shock and strain that running a tiller can put on your body.
The Schiller Mantis tills to ten inches deep and about nine inches wide. Weighing only 20 lbs, you get excellent value within a compact model. Like the aforementioned product, this tiller also requires a gasoline/oil mixture so you will need to purchase both before operating the machine.
A great bonus feature of this product is that it comes with the ability to purchase additional optional attachments. It can quickly and easily become a multi-use tool simply by adding things like a lawn aerator, a dethatcher, a border edger, a plow, and even a lawn aerator. These attachments are easy to install, taking only a few minutes each to pop on or off.
- Foldable design makes it easy to store and transport
- The product comes with a 5-year warranty and a lifetime guarantee on the tines of the tiller
- 10-inch tilling depth is deep enough to loosen the seedbed and aerate the soil
- Not ideal for weeding – the tines easily become tangled in dense patches
- Does not have wheels
- 9-inch width is relatively small
3. Husqvarna FT900-CA Adjustable Width Front Tine Tiller
Husqvarna is a major name in the outdoor world, and the FT900 offers no exception to the company’s stand-out reputation. This tiller comes with a 205cc engine, making it one of the most powerful gas tillers you can find. It has front-facing, forward-rotating tines that allow you to cut easily through the soil.
This tiller is also gas-powered, but it has a fuel tank that is .075 gallons, meaning you won’t have to stop often to refuel. It tills at three different widths of 12, 24, and 26 inches, allowing you the ability to customize the size of the swath that you till without having to switch to another piece of lawn equipment.
The device has transport wheels that are eight inches, which doesn’t provide excellent balance but does help keep you stable. There is a drag bar included for added stability, as well as a vertically adjustable handlebar so that you can adjust it to your own convenience. This reduces a lot of the load that vibrates up through your back.
A final bonus of this tiller? It is CARB (California Air Resource Board) Compliant, meaning you don’t have to worry about emissions issues, no matter where you live. This heavy-duty tiller can get the job done – but keep in mind that, at 100 lbs, it is a little on the heavier side.
- Adjustable tilling widths can be adapted to any size garden
- Comes with drag bar and counterweight to help reduce pressure
- Sold with a 2-year product warranty
- Does not come with an easy electric start and instead requires a recoil start
- Very heavy and more difficult to maneuver
- Difficult to move when the tines are not engaged
4. Mantis 7250-00-02 3-Speed Electric Tiller/Cultivator
Another exceptionally powerful tiller/cultivator on the market is the Mantis 7250. This tiller is powered by electricity and weighs just 21 pounds. It is lightweight and operates as a front tine tiller, making it easy to use in any garden, large or small.
This tiller comes with a 3-speed, 540 w motor. It tills to 9 inches wide and 10 inches deep, making it a good fit for gardens that are a bit more difficult to maneuver. It is foldable for easy storage and also has reversible tines – which makes it easier to cultivate shallow areas. This tiller also comes with a five-year warranty, and the tines are also guaranteed – but for life.
Because this tiller is so compact, it’s a great choice for gardeners with small plots who want to get the job done quickly. It’s not bulky or overly heavy when you are trying to move it. Plus, since it does not rely on gasoline or oil to use, it produces no emissions and is also much quieter. This is particularly important if you live in a suburban area and don’t want to irritate your neighbors.
- Folds up quickly for easy storage and transportation
- Comes with a lifetime time guarantee and a five-year warranty
- Starts easily with an electric start and a nearly silent motor
- Lightweight and easy to maneuver
- Narrow blades aren’t ideal for larger gardens
- Must be operated with a heavy-gauge extension cord to avoid damage to the motor
- Operation with an extension cord can be somewhat cumbersome
5. GreenWorks 27072 8 Amp 10-Inch Corded Tiller
The GreenWorks 27072 is another outstanding electric tiller that is both effective and durable. With an eight amp motor, this machine has an easy push-button starter and four eight inch-tines. It can be adjusted to till at a width of either 8.25 or 10 inches. This means you can make this tiller work no matter what the size of your garden may be. The tines each till to about five inches in depth.
This tiller is incredibly portable, featuring an easy-fold handle that makes storing and transporting this tiller easy. This is a great option for raised beds because it is so small and lightweight. You can easily lift this tiller up and over the sides of your raised beds without worrying about throwing out your back or straining your arms.
Because this tiller is powered by electricity, you don’t have to worry about mixing gasoline with oil. You also don’t need to use a recoil cord to start, which takes a lot of the frustration out of using a tiller. It has forward rotating tines, allowing for superb performance even when operating in dense, hard-packed earth. There is some assembly required with this tiller, but you won’t need to purchase or use any additional tools.
- Operates quietly and doesn’t require the mixing of gasoline and oil
- Has a fold-down handle for easy storage
- Has a fold-down handle for easy storage
- No battery required
- Adjustable wheels
- Tills at a somewhat shallow depth
- Comes with few instructions for assembly
6. Sun Joe Tiller Joe Electric Tiller and Cultivator
If you are looking for a high-quality electric tiller and cultivator, the Sun Joe Tiller offers just that. This tiller comes with a powerful 12-amp motor that allows you to rid your garden of weeds and to aerate the soil in just a few short minutes. Many people shy away from electric tillers because they believe that they won’t be as powerful as gas-powered models. Think again. This electric tiller is just as powerful as a gas-powered tiller, but it allows you to till your garden in a more environmentally-friendly way.
This tiller operates quietly despite being equipped with a powerful motor that generates 340 RPM. You can move through the dirt easily before stashing this tiller away. Storage, by the way, is also easy with this tiller – it has a collapsible handle that makes it easy to transport.
Starting this tiller is straightforward, requiring no gas, oil, or fumes to get started. All you need to do is press a button. It requires minimal maintenance and comes with six steel angled tines. These tines are incredibly durable and allow you to till up to eight inches deep and sixteen inches wide.
This tiller comes with six tines, which is much more than you would with expect with an electric tiller. If you’re concerned about the durability of an electric tiller, don’t be. This tiller comes with a powerful electric motor that is backed by a two-year warranty. It has the ability to cultivate a wide swath as well as adjustable wheels that can be switched to three different positions for when you are tilling in a tricky, hard-to-reach spot.
- Comes with adjustable wheels and a collapsible handle for added portability
- Backed by a two-year warranty
- Backed by a two-year warranty
- Operates quietly with ETL-approved decibel rating of 93 dB
- Does not till as deep as a gas-powered tiller would
- Does not come with supports to make it more stable
- Distributes some weight back on your arms as you till
7. Troy-Bilt TB146 EC 29cc 4-Cycle Cultivator with JumpStart Technology
This tiller actually comes with two options – you can purchase the 2017 edition or the new, updated 2018 edition. Both tillers are designed for cultivating small flower beds and larger vegetable gardens alike. This product is equipped with a 29cc four-cycle engine that does not require you to mix any gasoline or oil.
The Troy-Bilt tiller has an adjustable tilling width between six and twelve inches, making it easier than ever to adapt to the size of your particular garden. It comes with six premium steel tines (the 2018 edition has four forward-rotating eight-inch steel tines) that can cultivate your garden up to five inches deep. It has a SpringAssist JumpStart technology so that you can start the engine without pulling the cord – but you will need to purchase this starter separately.
Finally, this tiller comes with a folding handle, saving you space in storage and making it easier to stash. It is both lightweight and compact and has transport wheels that make it super easy to move. The newer model also comes with a variable-speed throttle control with a steel shield to help limit the amount of dust and dirt that hit you in the face while you are tilling your garden.
- Easy to maneuver in cramped space
- Sturdy plow handle and grips make operating this tiller comfortable
- Adjustable tilling width allows you to adapt to any conditions in your garden
- Adjustable tilling width allows you to adapt to any conditions in your garden
- Does not come with the electric start (must be purchased separately)
8. Earthquake 12802 MC440 Mini Cultivator, Red/Black
This powerful tiller proves that good things do come in small packages. This compact cultivator can not only till the soil in your garden, but it can also pull most of the weeds. Although it is compact, it can break up even the heaviest, most compacted soils – including heavy, hard clay. This tiller is compact and easy to both carry and operate, weighing only 35 pounds. Most of the weight is concentrated at the front of the machine, which makes it easier to transport.
This gasoline-powered tiller is equipped with a three-part mechanism to loosen the soil. It allows you to mix, weed, and aerate your garden all at once. You can fertilize and weed while you are tilling the garden. This tiller is maneuverable and adjustable, putting little strain on your arms and back. It has removable tines so that you can reverse from cultivating to digging.
One of the nicest features of this tiller is that it has a start feature that can be enabled behind the handlebars of the cultivator, without requiring you to bend over. It also has an excellent air filter design that makes it possible for dirt to stay outside of the garden, avoiding damage to your engine. This tiller is easy to maneuver, with a superior handlebar design that allows you to dig easily without being constantly jounced around.
- Comes with a powerful 40cc engine, requiring no mixing of gasoline or oil
- Has a superior air filter design to keep dirt out
- Allows you to start the tiller while standing to make tilling more comfortable
- Comes with an optional edging tool
- No tools required for assembly
- Can be challenging to start
- Tines clog up easily in heavy grass
9. Earthwise 7.5 Inch TC70025 7.5-Inch
This tiller is manufactured in several sizing options, including a 7.5 inch, a 16-inch with a 12.5-amp motor, and a 16-inch with a 13.5-amp motor. However, this review will focus on the 7.5-inch tiller, as it is one of the best-reviewed and best-performing tillers you can find. This compact model comes with a powerful 2.5-amp motor and offers exceptional run-time and durability. A powerful device, it can cultivate up to 7.5 inches wide and six inches deep.
This tiller is made specifically for small or mid-size gardens, and also works well to control weeds. It is lightweight and durable, starting with a simple single lever switch. It has a soft, ergonomic grip and serves as an environmentally friendly alternative to gas-powered tillers. It also operates extremely quietly, avoiding any damage to your hearing and also avoiding the potential of irritating your neighbors!
- 4 steel tines and steel pole operation make it easy to handle
- Cuts to six inches deep and 7.5 inches wide
- The environmentally friendly option that produces no emissions
- The extension cord must be purchased separately
- Lightweight design can cause it to bounce around during operation
10. YARDMAX YT4565 Dual Rotating Rear Tine Tiller
This tiller is manufactured by Briggs & Stratton, one of the most well-respected names in the lawn care world. This tiller is no exception, delivering nearly 9.50 ft-lbs of gross torque with 190 rpm rotational speed. It is exceptionally wide, tilling up to eighteen inches deep with seven different depth adjustments. It can be operated with a single hand, moving efficiently on its own so that you can stand and steer from either side.
The tines on this tiller are self-sharpening and work well in any soil type – including heavy clay soils. It has a front counterweight on pneumatic wheels that are 13 inches, making it easier to manage and providing less stress to your back and arms. It has a self-propelled drive system to give you more control over your steering without compromising the quality of work it performs in your garden.
- Comes with adjustable side safety shields to enhance safety
- Durable, heavy duty transmission with one forward and one reverse gear for maximum control
- Easily adjustable drag bar to provide excellent balance in all conditions
- No additional attachments available
- Handle and control cables must be attached
How Do I Find the Best Garden Tiller For My Needs?
There’s no way around it – buying a garden tiller is a significant investment, and it’s one that you should think carefully about before making your decision. A garden tiller is absolutely vital if you plan on growing a garden plot of any size, but you want to make sure you are selecting the best product for your needs. Whether you’ve moved to a new house or are building a garden on your existing plot, make sure you pick the tiller that will be powerful enough for your needs.
Some tillers are better at breaking in new soil, while others are designed to loosen dirt that has been previously tilled. That being said, there are so many options out there, from gas to electric, lightweight to heavy-duty, that you will not have any trouble finding the perfect tiller for your job. Whichever options you choose, know that this information and these product recommendations can help guide you toward your most productive gardening season yet.