Garden Tool Storage Ideas: Keeping Your Shed Ship-Shape

By   | Last Updated :   February 5, 2021 | Filed In :   Garden Accessory Ideas

Anyone who spends a lot of time in their garden knows that it’s one messy hobby. With all the tools and materials needed to maintain a garden, it’s easy to end up chucking everything in the shed, closing the door and hoping for the best.

Tangled hoses, rakes and shovels… Gloves with missing pairs… Unlabelled tins and boxes of clutter… It can all spiral out of control, turning gardening from a relaxing activity to an annoying chore. But it doesn’t have to be like this! With these inspirational garden tool storage ideas, you can create a better space and make gardening fun again.

Organising Your Garden Shed

If we’re going to talk about garden tool storage ideas, let’s start with the shed. It’s just the classic way to keep your outside tidy; buy a shed, chuck all your garden bits in it.

There are lots of reasons why your shed might be looking a bit chaotic. Maybe you can’t seem to find a garden tool organising system that sticks? Or perhaps you’ve just allowed junk, half-used DIY materials and garden rubbish to get out of hand? Whatever the reason, there’s no need to panic. Here are six shed storage ideas that will help keep your shed a little more organised.

Simple Shelving

The simplest way to start organising a messy shed is to get things off the floor and arranged on shelves. This makes it much easier to see what you have lying around, especially if you use secondary storage boxes for smaller items (and keep those boxes clearly labelled).

Wall-mounted shelves are great for lighter items and keeping tools out of reach of children or pets. Lower, standing shelves can typically handle heavier items, and double-up as a workbench if they’re deep enough!

Adjustable Wall Racks

If the walls of your shed are strong enough, a shelving rack is a serious organisational upgrade. Adjustable racks make the most sense, as you can customise the height of each s helf to precisely match the items you’ll be storing on it. Most adjustable shelving systems have the option of rails, baskets or hooks, too – allowing you to tidy up hoses, larger garden tools and other miscellaneous bits that might not fit on a regular shelf.

tools and DIY equipment on wire shelves that can be adjusted to different heights

Folding Surfaces

Do you use your shed in different ways each season? If your shed goes through cycles of being messy – for example, in spring, when you’re potting new plants – your storage can be flexible, too. Folding tables or hinged shelves are an excellent option in this situation. Set your surfaces up when you’re using your shed as a functional workspace, and then fold them away again when you need the storage space back.

If you give your folding shelves an inch or so of depth away from the wall, you can hang your tools on the wall behind it when you fold it up. It’s a space-saving hack that takes away the need for big, bulky prep tables.

Peg Boards Galore

Shelves are great for boxes, tins and tubs, but peg boards are excellent for individual tools and otherwise loose items. They’re especially useful for hoes, rakes, shovels, and storage bags. Even better – look for a magnetic pegboard so small tools can stick straight to the wall, no pegs required.

Hooks at Every Height

Hooks, hangers, and other wall-mounted tool holders are excellent for keeping long-handle garden tools out of the way, either vertically or horizontally. From a safety point of view, don’t store them overhead or anywhere you’ll need to stretch or reach for them. The back of  a shed door is the best spot, or above a clear patch of floor.

Curate a Caddy

If your garden habits usually involve constantly traipsing things in and out of your shed, do yourself a favour and create a caddy. It could be something as small as a basket, or as big as a pallet on wheelsUse it to store all of your tools or gardening essentials – hand trowel, pruning shears, gloves, watering can – and keep it close to the shed door. Whenever you need to pop into the garden for some quick work, everything you usually need will already be to hand.

DIY garden pallet projects for making a garden caddy for carrying plants and tools

Storing Specific Tools

Now that we’ve covered a few general garden tool storage ideas, let’s get into some detail. Lots of DIY equipment is both awkward to store and dangerous if stored badly – a tricky combination. Items like power tools or long garden equipment that can be a tripping or a falling hazard need special places to live when they’re not being used. Let’s have a look at some of your options.

Custom Wood Pallet Tool Storage

Much like a peg board and wall-mounted shelves, a wooden tool rack or bucket helps keep items off the floor. It also helps you see where all your tools are at a glance. You can create your own tool rack or bins using wood pallets and extra wood. Try creating mini shelves and hooks for different tools, hanging buckets through the slats, and even using wooden pegs, you can create a super organised tool storage area that’s separate from the rest of the gardening tools.

DIY Rotating Tool Stand

If you want small tools to stay within reach but are short on surface space, a rotating stand is the answer. You might need to use it in addition to larger tool storage, but the biggest advantage is having a relatively small footprint in relation to how many tools you can have accessible at once.

a table-top tool stand that rotates for easy access

Upcycle Old Drawers

A small dresser or stack of drawers can make a great storage area for small tools and materials. Depending on the size of your makeshift dresser tool rack, you can store loose items like nails, screws, nuts, and bolts, as well as light hand tools.

Tiny Garden Tool Storage Ideas for Small Homes

Let’s be real – the average UK home doesn’t come with an abundance of space you can dedicate to tool storage. When you only have space for a small garden shed, it’s important to make the most out of every inch of space. Here are some sneaky garden tool storage ideas for smaller sheds!

Tall, Narrow Storage

When square footage is at a premium, avoid units that are bulk or wide. Slimline designs that have a small footprint (but lots of vertical space) are your friend. That applies to garden sheds and greenhouses, as well as cabinets and shelves. Narrow drawers, hooks and shallow shelves can store the majority of your garden essentials if you plan them carefully.

Another tip is to choose glass-front storage (or open storage, but this gets dirty much quicker). You’ll spend much less time rummaging through cupboards when you can see what’s in them from the outside, and you’ll have more of an incentive to keep them tidy!

Below-Deck Storage

Building a deck is a good way to create levels in your garden and to use the space you have to the fullest. Plus, you can make use of the empty space below by turning it into hidden storage. This is particularly useful if you don’t have room for a full shed, or want to put away seasonal stuff like outdoor toys or sun loungers when it gets colder.

Dual-Purpose Planters & Furniture

There’s another way to hide away garden tools when you don’t have a shed – inside boxy planters and built-in benches. They look just like normal contemporary benches, but when you lift the top off, you have a large, hollow space for storing anything from long-handle tools to garden hoses.

This is a really elegant solution for small gardens, where you probably have fewer tools but also much less space to keep them.

a garden seat made from two stacked pallets covered with a squashy pillow and cushioned back suppot

Ladder Shelves

Stylish and functional, ladder shelves make use of vertical space much in the same way that the small, skinny sheds do. Use ladder shelving for smaller handheld garden tools, watering cans, and pots, then use hooks on nearby walls for hoses and rakes.

a short ladder being used to hold plants

Upcycled Furniture

Got an old writing desk lying around? How about a cupboard you’ve been meaning to get rid of? Consider repurposing old furniture into garden tool storage! With a bit of creativity and inspiration, there are all sorts of DIY hacks you can employ to give a unique charm to your outside space.

Making a mess in the garden is unavoidable – you’re dealing with a lot of dirt and mud. But tool storage doesn’t have to be as messy as the actual gardening process. Whether you’re fixing up a big storage shed that’s been neglected over the years, or you’re coming up with space saving ideas for a smaller home, there’s plenty of ways to figure out how to store and organise your garden tools. With a garden tool rack and just a few nifty DIY ideas, you can turn a messy old shed into a clean, organised tool storage area!

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By Kirsteen Mackay

Kirsteen is a professional writer who traded a tiny garden for an even smaller balcony when she moved to Brighton in 2015. Her interest in gardening stems from a keen desire to turn her simple slab of concrete into a lush urban oasis, complete with cosy-but-practical garden furniture and delicious edible plants.

View All Posts By Kirsteen Mackay »

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