|These gloves are made for skiing, but that's not how I've been using them...|
OK, fellow gardeners, here's a question that mystifies me:
I've been gardening for ~2 years now, but I have yet to figure out what to look for in an ideal gardening glove.
Part of me really likes natural materials (animal skin) and to shop local (Made in USA). For those two criteria, I think it's hard to meet Sullivan Leather Gloves for quality and value.
I have a pair of super-comfy outseam gloves (seam is on the outside of the gloves) from Sullivan made of deerskin that I wear as my everyday winter gloves (driving, walking, etc.) -- plus they're really nice enough to be considered dress gloves too for a night out.
They're way too nice to use in the garden. But Sullivan has gloves like these Work gloves made of elk, goat or deer that seem to be designed for dirty work.
Even so, I have a hard time imagining getting these all mucked up working in the muddy, sticky clay that we get here in spring or fall.
For that type of work, I almost want a glove that I can either rinse off with a hose (which I don't think would be a smart idea with a leather glove) or even throw in a washing machine.
So I've been improvising and using some gloves that were clearly not designed as gardening gloves. For instance, I've used ski gloves (keeps my hands warm in winter, overheated in summer, decently padded for working with a shovel, but forget about any delicate work like planting seeds or picking small weeds).
|These are my other 'gardening gloves'. They are actually bicycling gloves. Not that I've ever tried to garden while bicycling. Because that would be weird.|
I've also used gloves that were meant for bicycling. These have a bit more dexterity and I like the elastic around the wrists that keeps dirt and debris from falling into the gloves, but they're clearly not meant to be gardening gloves. They still don't give much dexterity for detail work (sowing seeds, picking weeds), plus they were sown roughly on the inside so I always feel like I'm getting poked in the fingertips.
I have gone out and bought dedicated gardening gloves in the past - like these Magid nitrile-and-bamboo gloves from Amazon - but I find that they tend to rip and tear very easily. Plus that nitrile stuff makes me hands really sweaty and uncomfortable, especially in hot weather, despite the fact that the bamboo is supposed to make the gloves breathable.
|I found these Magid nitrile-rayon bamboo gloves from Amazon affordable, but not very durable (they tore easily). Plus they made my hands all sweaty. Yech.|
So help me out here fellow gardeners: What is the secret to the perfect gardening glove?
Or do you have a couple pairs of gloves that you use for different kinds of work?
For instance, should I get a pair of deerskin or goatskin gloves for certain kinds of heavy/dry work (chopping wood, trimming trees, etc.) and then just use disposable latex gloves for wet and muddy work?
I'd love to find a pair of gloves that is eco-friendly, durable, protective, comfortable, maybe even washable. Too much to ask?
All suggestions are appreciated! Looking forward to hearing what works best for you.