Growing your own food inevitably means building a few things to get the most out of your space. Even in our small space, we’ve had occassion to build raised beds, custom trellises, indoor seed racks, fences to keep out pests, and more! And our preferred medium for all these projects is wood. Primarily because woodworking doesn’t have to cost a fortune in equipment (and hopefully lumber prices will keep coming down… ).

Many beginner woodworking guides focus on “affordable” power tools or high-end hand tools, but those don’t make a lot of sense for a frugal gardener who just needs to get stuff done. Luckily, there is a third option: functional, budget-friendly hand tools.

Check out our go-to low-cost list for gardening woodworking projects so you can get growing without breaking the bank.

1. Japanese Hand Saw

It’s likely your projects will call for both rip cuts (along the grain) and cross cuts (across the grain), so why not buy a saw that can handle both? The value of these two-sided Japanese hand saws, known as a Ryoba saw, is hard to overstate.

While you wait for it to arrive, check out this video on how to get the most out of your new Japanese Ryoba saw.

Price: $10

2. Work Bench

Workbenches are a common tool to build for one’s self, but you’ll probably want a steady surface to just get started fast. This little bench from Harbor Freight is cheap, lightweight, folds down for easy storage, and gets the job done.

My only complaint (especially given the $22 price point)? It’s frustratingly short.

Price: $22

3. Chisels

Whether you’re ready to dive into the world of hand-cut joinery to build that potting table or simply want to stamp out a groove for your tomato trellis, you’ll need a set of basic chisels. Here’s a super affordable set to practice with until you know what you need in an upgrade.

Price: $8

4. Woodworking Mallet

Wooden mallets aren’t the cheapest style out there, but they do offer a big utility upgrade over a rubber or plastic mallet for woodworking. The small price difference makes sense in this case.

Price: $15

5. Combination Square

Pick up a combination square to ensure your cuts are square and your measurements are accurate. Pair it with a humble pencil to solve woodworking headaches on the fly.

Price: $11

6. Clamps

These sturdy 6 inch clamps keep materials in place and are a breeze to use. Before hitting purchase, keep in mind your project dimensions as you may need to step up to a larger size.

Price: $12 for 4

7. Wood Glue

Read up on how to apply wood glue and clamps to create seriously strong bonds on your project.

Price: $5

Total Cost: $83*

* At the time of this article release

If you’ve read much on this site, you probably already know we’re not bigs fan of the “you get what you pay for” mentality (it fools people into thinking they can’t pursue something new). A small investment in budget tools can easily pay off in savings by making your food garden more productive.

I hope you found this list of budget woodworking supplies handy!

And just in case you don’t have a project in mind, consider building some shelves to start an indoor vegetable garden.

Happy building!