Mantis Tiller History – how it all began
Nearly 40 years ago a small red tiller was first introduced to American gardeners. Its manufacturer boldly promised that the little dynamo would make gardening easier.
Back then, all tillers were big, heavy behemoths that were difficult to maneuver. Running a tiller was a big, manly man chore. After tilling a garden with a giant beast of a machine, every muscle in your body ached.
By comparison, the little red Mantis Tiller/Cultivator looked like a toy. It weighed in at just 20 pounds, and you could easily pick it up with one hand to move it from garage to garden. But when you pulled the cord to start the gas engine, the Mantis Tiller’s unique tines chewed up soil with amazing ease. Here was a piece of power equipment that actually delivered on its promises. It really did make gardening easier by taking the backbreaking strain out of tilling garden soil.
Still, when the Mantis Tiller was first offered for sale in 1980, no one could have predicted how popular the world’s first mini-tiller would become. Initially, the Mantis Tiller was largely shunned by men (who, apparently, did not want to be seen operating a diminutive “20-pound wonder”). But women and seniors wholeheartedly embraced the little tiller and made it a bestselling sensation. They loved the little red tiller because it was simple and easy to use – and it did exactly what the product ads said it would: take much of the hard work out of America’s favorite leisure activity.
Today, men and women alike are happily tilling their gardens with Mantis Tillers. In fact, it’s hard to find a gardener who will say anything disparaging about a Mantis Tiller.
Mantis receives hundreds of unsolicited testimonial letters and emails every year. Many gardeners become quite fond of their Mantis Tillers.
We especially love the letters from customers who at first did not believe the claims made in the company’s ads. Kenneth P. of Copperas Cove, Texas, was one of those skeptics. Kenneth admits that the only reason he bought a Mantis Tiller was because of the one-year “no questions asked” return policy.
“When I first got this little thing [the Mantis Tiller], I thought to myself, ‘What a waste of money!'” wrote Kenneth. “But when I started tilling, I was so amazed… My son even wanted to use it. We want to tell you, we love this little jewel – it’s great and I would tell anyone that it is well worth the money! Especially when you can get the kids to do the work!”
And then there are the fanatics. Rhonda S. of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, freely admits to being in love with her Mantis Tiller. “I love my Mantis Tiller, and I will never give it up,” says Rhonda. “I tilled my garden all by myself this year and it looks great!”