Wheelbarrow vs. Hand Truck: The Best Device for Yard Work and Landscaping

Landscaping can be a deeply gratifying experience while increasing the value of property and simply making a home or business a more attractive, pleasing place to be. However, like all good things, it requires work.


That work can and probably will be tough, but with the right equipment it doesn’t have to be a miserable, inefficient, or strain-inducing experience. There are too many specific work tools for the different sorts of landscaping and yard work projects to cover here, but the best tools for carting material to and from a worksite is manageable territory.

Though if there’s a single piece of advice that applies to the heavy lifting associated with any project, it’s that old landscaper’s maxim: “Use your head before your back.” To which the addition of, “And always wear a good pair of leather gloves,” can’t hurt.


The wheelbarrow is the unofficial godfather of the landscape and yard work material-moving equipment family. For millions of yard workers and DIY landscapers, the wheelbarrow is the tool for moving anything and everything they’re using for the project. It just doesn’t occur that there’d be a better device for the job.

That popularity makes sense. The wheelbarrow is a centuries-old godsend to the human back that has made millions of projects much more manageable. And it is great for some applications. It’s got great maneuverability, and for moving loose soil over relatively flat ground it can’t be beat. However, there are a number of applications for which the wheelbarrow doesn’t stand up as well.

Hand Truck

Hand trucks are terrific for moving heavy, solid (or bagged) things from point A to point B. They are preferable in this to the wheelbarrow for several reasons. Not having to lift said heavy thing into the wheelbarrow is one benefit. Additionally, a hand truck’s platform can be slid under items such as big rocks; slabs of stone; bags of concrete, fertilizer, mulch, compost, etc. and lifted up using leverage rather than leg and back-straining brute force.

Plus, a hand truck’s two wheels provide a stability advantage. There’s nothing more frustrating than the wheelbarrow’s terminal wobble leading to a tip-over. And if you have ever had the wheel of a wheelbarrow you’re pushing butt against something that stops it, jamming one of those handles into your stomach, you’re aware how unpleasant it is.

For landscaping and yard work, both for navigating variable, uneven, or inclined or declined terrain, choose a hand truck with big, pneumatic tires.

Convertible Hand Truck

An additional advantage of hand trucks is that they are also available in convertible models, also known as a collapsible hand truck. Convertible hand trucks break down from two wheels to four, more like a traditional dolly (but one with handles) than an upright hand truck. It’s a convenient feature for moving longer material like planks, logs, rolls of weed barrier, lumber, and the like.

What it comes down to is choosing the right tool for the project. Wheelbarrows are great for moving loose material and maneuvering over uneven or obstacle-laden terrain. Traditional hand trucks are preferable for the moving of anything solid, heavy, and stackable that can fit on its platform. A convertible hand truck is perfect for jobs that call for a hand truck and the moving of longer material. Good luck and good landscaping!

About Magline

Magline is the material handling industry’s premier provider of material transporting solutions. The Magline name has become a byword for safe, effective, reliable, and trustworthy loading, unloading, and transport of everything that keeps your business going. Magline has provided products, like the appliance hand truck, of the highest quality for more than 70 years. They are committed to furnishing equipment that works as hard as you do.

Learn more about Magline’s tradition of safety and excellence at

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