(OutdoorGardenLiving)- Cultivators become scarce when flirting below the $90 level. Typically they’re between $100 to $350. The TJ599E is on the low end of that range (check price at Amazon).
The cultivators that are priced less than the TJ599E happen to be two Black & Decker models, but their uncertainty lies in being cordless. Battery life in any cordless model can be unpredictable and oftentimes less powerful than a corded electric.
As an electric cultivator, you’ll want to use this if you have less than 1,000 square feet to till. Anything more than that and you’ll want to consider a front-tine tiller or a powerful rear-tine if you have small areas of hard/rocky soil.
The TJ599E Aardvark is Sun Joe’s newest tiller, but doesn’t shy away at taking the spotlight from Sun Joe’s other two tillers: the TJ600E and the hefty TJ601E. See what they did there? In each successive model starting with the 599E, has more power (otherwise expressed in Amps), than the next. 2.5 Amp, 6.5 Amp and 9 Amp, respectively.
They’re all considered a combination of a cultivator and tiller, except the TJ599E.
While the TJ599E doesn’t have nearly as much amp power as it’s counterparts, it is much lighter to handle at 9.5 pounds, whereas the TJ600E and TJ601E are 20 pounds and 33 pounds, respectively.
Design and Cultivating Depths
Beginning at the top is the handle ergonomically designed connected to an adjustable, telescoping shaft. Tilling blades are rightfully made of steel and a safety button is in place when operating the tiller.
The area the tiller covers is smaller because of it’s cultivating nature and size of blades. Sun Joe does proclaim that their TJ599E is best used for small gardens and (similar sized) flower beds, with a cultivating width of 6.3 inches and a depth of 6 inches.
The Bottom Line…
The TJ599E is really the cheapest electric cultivator among them for it’s reliability and high customer reviews. And if you’d rather not sacrifice the weight and/or you only have small areas to cultivate like a flower bed, then the Aardvark TJ599E will fit those needs.
It’s usually priced just under $100. You probably won’t find them lower than that, as Sun Joe seems to have put a bottleneck on what other vendors can list the TJ599E cultivator at.
As far as reviewers opinions on the web go, I found only praise given for their TJ599E cultivator. The major theme among them was how good it is at maintaining the weeds between their rows of flowers and keeping the weeds from their raised gardens.
The one complaint I did find- a review posted on the Sun Joe website at snowjoe.com– stated their Sun Joe would pick up rocks and stall after coming in contact with rocky soil. First of all, this is far from it’s intended use. Moreover, cultivators in general aren’t meant to be used for soil with a noticeable amount of rock, rather rear-tine or even front-tine models should be used for that purpose.
Where you can buy this cultivator
Sun Joe seems to be partnering with Amazon, a trusted online marketplace, in offering the TJ599E Aardvark. I’d roll my dice with Amazon in getting it packed and shipped to you in one piece- Amazon is generally the more go-to name for tillers than Sears and Home Depot are (who also offer it) and coincidentally more reviews have been left on Amazon than snowjoe.com and the two previously mentioned sites.