Tips To Choose The Best Equipment For Landscaping



Choosing the right landscaping equipment can sometimes be a bit tricky. After all, some landscaping machinery performs very similar tasks. So how do you know which one is the right choice?

It will depend on a variety of factors, such as the type of work you will be doing, what kind of terrain you’ll be working on, how versatile the landscaping machinery is, as well as potential storage needs.

Here are some helpful tips to help you navigate the decision making process.

Considerations When Deciding on Landscaping Equipment
Before making a decision about which landscaping machinery to choose, here are some key factors you need to consider.

Terrain of the Work Site

Before you settle on any type of landscaping equipment, consider the terrain of the landscape you’ll be working on. Is it a hard surface or a soft surface? This will determine how much traction you will need and help you decide whether you will pick a wheeled or a tracked landscaping machine.

Terrains with soft grass will need low-pressure equipment like a compact track loader, or any other rubber tracked machine. Conversely, terrains with hard earth are better suited to high-pressure equipment like a skid steer and other wheeled machines.

Size of the Landscape

Another tip is to consider the size of the landscape. Some landscaping machines have higher speeds than others and, therefore, can cover large distances faster. Ideally, you want to choose compact landscaping machinery for a smaller landscape and larger heavy-duty machinery for larger landscapes.

Equipment Versatility

Choose landscaping equipment that can handle the bulk of your landscaping tasks. This will save you having to get a bunch of different landscaping machines. Make a list of all the tasks you need to complete, group these tasks according to which piece of landscaping equipment can do them. The goal is to find one or two landscaping machines can handle all your tasks.


If you’re renting then you wouldn’t need to worry about upkeep, but you are looking at buying landscaping equipment then you’ll also need to think about ongoing maintenance. Working with a tight budget? Choose landscaping machines that are easy to maintain. This will allow you to DIY some of these repairs and maintenance tasks. Things like replacing worn-out rubber tracks, replacing filters, or doing oil changes are all tasks that you can do with the help of a few tutorials.

Best Types Of Equipment For Landscaping
Each of these landscaping machines is suited for different applications. Now that you understand what you need to consider, let’s look at some of the merits of each machine and which situations they are best suited for.


Large or mid-sized excavators are commonly used in bigger job sites because of their size, making them perfect for commercial landscaping or large residential homes and estates.

Hilly landscapes, muddy, sandy and wet terrains pose no problems for this landscaping machinery.

Excavators can be equipped with a variety of attachments to perform different tasks. For instance, you can attach the planetary drive auger to the front or back of the excavator to dig into heavily compacted soil, clay, or rocky conditions.

With their superior lifting and digging power, they’re ideal for digging to lay foundations, rough grading, lifting soil, installing structures, planting trees, digging up holes for fencing, or digging trenches and laying pipes for irrigation. However, they are most popular for earthmoving.

Mini Excavators

Mini excavators are smaller and much more compact, versatile, and lighter in weight than their full-sized counterparts. This makes them great for confined spaces or small backyards.

Even though mini excavators can be driven on any terrain (including frozen ground) they are the best choice for using on soft ground or grass because it won’t cause any damage or tear up the ground.

They perform the same landscaping jobs as excavators since they can be equipped with similar attachments. Some of the most common uses of mini excavators are planting trees, digging up tree stumps, installing irrigation systems, and hardscaping.

Skid Steers

Skid steers seem to be a popular choice because of their versatility and affordability. They can be fitted with countless attachments to perform a variety of tasks such as mulching, prepping soil, installing irrigation lines, digging holes and planting trees, loading and hauling things like pavers, plants and pallets, as well as clearing snow.

The trick to getting the most out of a skid steer is knowing the right types of attachments to use.

Skid steers are best used on a site with hard surfaces like pavements, concrete, or extremely compacted soil. They are also ideal for snow applications because of their higher speed and ground pressure. Also, because of their small size, they are able to navigate small spaces like narrow garden paths.

Compact Track Loader

Compact track loaders (CTLs) basically look like skid steers with tracks.

CTLs can have rubber tracks or steel tracks. General rule of thumb is to use rubber tracks for gound you don’t want to damage and steel tracks for really rough terrain.

They excel in work sites that are wet, muddy, or sandy conditions because they exert less ground pressure. Meaning they are great for ‘soft’ ground and surfaces that can easily get damaged when pressure is exerted.

CTLs can perform the same tasks as skid steers. The only real difference is that they are better on soft ground whereas a skid steer is best used on hard surfaces.


Backhoes can handle landscaping jobs of all sizes and types. They can move a large volume of soil, concrete or rocks, or other heavier materials, dig up trees, move boulders, lift heavy loads, dig up compacted materials, push topsoil to a different location, and dig up holes for fence posts. They are also commonly used for trenching and backfilling.

Just like skid steers and mini excavators, they can be equipped with different attachments, making them extremely versatile.

Backhoes move exceptional well in rough areas but can be used on a variety of terrains. 

Best Types Of Attachments For Landscaping


These can drill holes for planting and putting up fence posts, sign posts, as well as making holes for putting up support structures.


They come in a variety of sizes and are primarily used for moving materials and levelling the ground. The edges of the blades can either be metallic or non-metallic.


This attachment is to help you with cleaning/clearing the work site, clearing snow, or doing regular maintenance such as sweeping leaves off a driveway.


Used for digging drainage systems and trenches for laying irrigation pipes.

Grapple buckets

Have a grasp-and-hold ability which is used for picking up bulky loads or irregularly shaped objects, cleaning up the work site, or clearing bushes.


Great for clearing out rocks and other solid materials when preparing to lay sod or plant seedlings, levelling, and conditioning.


These are for mixing soils and compost when preparing seedbeds where you’re preparing the soil for laying sod and planting.


There are two types of buckets:

1)      A light bucket for light applications like hauling snow and mulch and dumping materials into a truck; and

2)      A multipurpose bucket for grading, levelling, clamping, digging, back-dragging and snow clearing.

Both buckets are available in different sizes.

Pallet forks

Help with loading and unloading pallets, sod, stones, and even fertilizer.

Stump grinders

Used for removing stumps.

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