Difference Wiki

Spade vs. Flaughter: What's the Difference?

By Harlon Moss & Janet White || Updated on May 28, 2024
A spade is a gardening tool with a flat blade used for digging, whereas a flaughter is a specialized spade used primarily for cutting peat.

Key Differences

A spade is a common tool in gardening and landscaping, featuring a flat, rectangular blade used for digging and moving soil. Its design allows for efficient penetration and lifting of earth, making it indispensable for planting, trenching, and edging. A flaughter, on the other hand, is a specialized form of spade used in the process of peat cutting. Peat, an accumulation of partially decayed vegetation or organic matter, is traditionally harvested as a fuel source in some regions.
While spades are versatile and used in a variety of gardening tasks, flaughters are primarily used in peat bogs. The flaughter's unique blade shape and construction cater specifically to the challenges of cutting peat, which requires precision to avoid wasting material and to ensure the integrity of the remaining peat bank.
In gardening, the spade's flat blade is essential for creating straight edges and removing soil cleanly. Conversely, the flaughter's slightly curved blade and robust design make it more effective for the heavy-duty task of slicing through peat layers, where a standard spade would struggle.
The handle design also varies between the two; spades often have longer handles for leverage, whereas flaughters might have shorter, sturdier handles to provide the necessary control and force for cutting peat.

Comparison Chart

Primary Use

General digging and gardening
Cutting peat

Blade Shape

Flat, rectangular
Slightly curved, robust


Metal blade, wood/fiberglass handle
Typically metal with a sturdy handle


High, used in various gardening tasks
Low, specialized for peat cutting

Handle Length

Generally longer for better leverage
Usually shorter for more control

Spade and Flaughter Definitions


A hand tool with a flat blade for lifting soil.
He used a spade to edge the lawn neatly.


A specialized spade for cutting peat.
The farmer used a flaughter to harvest peat from the bog.


A garden implement for breaking ground.
The gardener grabbed his spade and started planting flowers.


An implement designed for peat cutting.
The traditional flaughter is still used in some rural areas.


A digging tool with a sharp edge.
The worker thrust the spade into the ground to start the trench.


A tool with a curved blade for slicing peat.
Cutting peat with a flaughter requires skill and precision.


A tool with a flat blade used for digging.
She used a spade to turn the soil in her garden.


A peat-cutting tool with a strong handle.
He wielded the flaughter expertly, slicing through the dense peat.


A sturdy digging tool having a thick handle and a heavy, flat blade that can be pressed into the ground with the foot.


A spade used in peat bogs.
The flaughter's unique shape makes it ideal for peat cutting.


Any of various similar digging or cutting tools.


A flat spade used in peat cutting.


A black, leaf-shaped figure on certain playing cards.


A playing card with this figure.


Also spades (used with a sing. or pl. verb) The suit of cards represented by this figure.


Offensive Slang Used as a disparaging term for a black person.


To dig or cut with a spade.


A garden tool with a handle and a flat blade for digging. Not to be confused with a shovel which is used for moving earth or other materials.


A playing card marked with the symbol ♠.
I've got only one spade in my hand.


A black person.


A cutting instrument used in flensing a whale.


A hart or stag three years old.


A castrated man or animal.


To turn over soil with a spade to loosen the ground for planting.


A hart or stag three years old.


A castrated man or beast.


An implement for digging or cutting the ground, consisting usually of an oblong and nearly rectangular blade of iron, with a handle like that of a shovel.


One of that suit of cards each of which bears one or more figures resembling a spade.
"Let spades be trumps!" she said.


A cutting instrument used in flensing a whale.


To dig with a spade; to pare off the sward of, as land, with a spade.


A playing card in the major suit of spades


A sturdy hand shovel that can be pushed into the earth with the foot


(ethnic slur) offensive name for a Black person;
Only a Black can call another Black a nigga


Dig (up) with a spade;
I spade compost into the flower beds


An essential gardening tool for soil manipulation.
The spade is crucial for any serious gardening project.


What is the main use of a spade?

A spade is primarily used for digging, moving soil, and gardening tasks.

What material are spades usually made of?

Spades typically have metal blades and handles made of wood or fiberglass.

Why is the handle length important for a spade?

The longer handle of a spade provides better leverage for digging and lifting soil.

How is a flaughter different from a regular spade?

A flaughter is specifically designed for cutting peat, with a unique blade suited for this purpose.

What kind of blade does a flaughter have?

A flaughter has a slightly curved and robust blade designed for cutting peat.

Are spades versatile tools?

Yes, spades are highly versatile and used for various tasks in gardening and landscaping.

Where is a flaughter most commonly used?

A flaughter is most commonly used in peat bogs for harvesting peat.

Do spades come in different sizes?

Yes, spades come in various sizes to suit different tasks and user preferences.

Is a flaughter used in gardening?

No, a flaughter is not typically used in gardening; it is specialized for peat cutting.

Can a spade be used to cut peat?

While possible, a spade is not as effective for cutting peat as a flaughter due to its blade shape.

Can a flaughter be used for tasks other than cutting peat?

A flaughter is not practical for other tasks due to its specialized design.

Are flaughters widely available?

Flaughters are less common and typically found in areas where peat cutting is practiced.

Why is peat cutting specialized?

Peat cutting requires precision to harvest the material effectively and maintain the peat bank.

Can the spade's design affect its effectiveness?

Yes, the design and quality of the spade significantly impact its effectiveness in various tasks.

How does the blade design of a flaughter aid in peat cutting?

The curved and robust blade allows it to slice through dense peat effectively.

Is the handle of a flaughter similar to that of a spade?

No, a flaughter's handle is usually shorter and sturdier for better control.

Is the flaughter still used today?

Yes, the flaughter is still used in regions where peat harvesting is common.

What kind of maintenance do spades require?

Spades require regular cleaning, sharpening, and occasional handle replacement.

What is the primary advantage of a spade in gardening?

The primary advantage is its ability to dig and move soil efficiently.

What tasks are spades best suited for?

Spades are best suited for digging, trenching, edging, and soil manipulation.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Co-written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.

Trending Comparisons

Popular Comparisons

New Comparisons