The Unusual Tool Martha Stewart Uses To Clean Up After Gardening

Let's face it, gardening can be a messy business. Whether it's pulling weeds or repotting a plant, dirt, soil, fertilizer, and more can get, well ... everywhere. This is especially the case with an indoor potting shed, where its entire purpose is to start seedlings and to repot plants, meaning there will be inevitable spills and messes throughout your work surface. So if you want to keep things tidy, it's helpful to have the right tools for an easy cleanup. On that note, leave it to gardening maven Martha Stewart to come up with a handy tool to help you clean up your gardening mess in a snap.

On a recent TikTok, she shared her secret: a handheld whisk broom. While whisk brooms come in all shapes and sizes, the unusual shape of Stewart's broom and its long, stiff bristles make it an especially handy tool for any gardening corner.

An angled whisk broom

In her TikTok, Martha Stewart, standing in one of her garden sheds, showcases what looks to be a small angled broom that she says is "a fantastic garden tool." Calling it "an unusual" whisk broom, she guesses it to be Japanese in origin. In describing this "very useful" gardening tool, Stewart states, "I use it for just brushing my tables when I'm doing a lot of gardening." In the video's caption, Stewart adds, "It makes cleaning up after gardening projects a breeze."

Stewart's whisk broom is likely made from broomcorn, otherwise known as Japanese sorghum. The broomcorn bristles are flexible, making it easier to reach difficult spots to clean, and with care and maintenance can last a very long time. And it seems Stewart's unusual tool has at least one other very practical use aside from gardening cleanup: "[I]t's a very great fan," she shares, with a wry grin, to end her video.

Whisk brooms and gardening

Like Martha Stewart's whisk broom, you may come across similarly styled stiff-bristled brooms in some garden centers. As with other whisk brooms, these brooms (see above right) lack a handle and are meant to be used by hand.

Sometimes referred to as a brush, these cleaning tools are designed for a more specific purpose, however: cleaning bonsai trees of leaves, dirt, and debris after trimming to make them look pristine for display. They come in multiple sizes and shapes, some with angled bristles like Stewart's, others with rounded, flat bristles.

The whisk brooms are also used to even the soil after a bonsai plant has been transplanted, as one rule of bonsai is to make sure that the soil in the pot is uniform and level. The small brooms also come in handy when cleaning off any dirt or debris on the outside of plant pots, which is also very similar to how Stewart made use of her "unusual" whisk broom when gardening indoors.