A Guide to Tools for Pruning

Unkempt bushes are the number one frustration of gardeners who want a tidy garden. Neat, trimmed hedges are everything when it comes to making a garden look tidy, and can rectify a scruffy looking garden. Overgrown hedges can immediately detract from hard work elsewhere. Tools for pruning are an absolute must, and our guide will point you in the right direction.

Manual Shears

These are the best option for gardens with a small bush or hedge that will only need occasional pruning. Being affordable and easy to store, sharpen and use, they are great for intermediate gardeners with a little extra time to care for hedges.

Selecting a model with long handles give you the ability to snip upper branches and twigs without the need for a step ladder. Bulky machines require the user to have a certain amount of height and strength, but these shears are light weight and can be effortlessly sharpened, for a clean cut.

However, the blades are short and while shears are great for nipping a few over grown twigs, cutting back an entire hedgerow could take hours – even days. These Wolf Garten shears are perfect for topiary, or gardens with only a small hedge or bush. Anything more unruly may need something a bit stronger.

Cordless Hedge Trimmers

If your garden has a small, slow growing hedge, a handy cordless hedge trimmer might be more appropriate. These great machines are lightweight – often coming in at less than 3kg, and still offer all the power and punch of a regular electric hedge trimmer.

Being portable, these are great hedge trimmers for large gardens with not a lot of hedging. If your lawn is too long for even the longest extension cords, a cordless trimmer might help. There’s nothing as frustrating as pulling out an extension lead while trimming a hedge, and having your work interrupted.

The only issue is battery life. If there is a huge job ahead of you, they might not be the best bet. This Bosch Cordless Hedge Trimmer can last up to an hour – meaning if you only have a small trim job, it’s no issue. However, if you are cutting a lot of hedges and could be working for hours, you’ll need something that’s going to last.

Electric Hedge Trimmers

Shaving a hedge to total perfection is satisfying as anything. Electric hedge trimmers do not pollute your hedge with messy petrol, and there is no displeasing smell to annoy your neighbours. They are incredibly easy to use and cut just as efficiently.

These hedge trimmers remain plugged into the mains electricity the entire time they are operating, meaning no battery running out. Electric hedge trimmers are usually lightweight, without the need for a bulky battery.

However, wiring can be a hassle. This Sanli Hedge Trimmer has a cord reach of 10m, which is great for small gardens enclosed with hedging. Anything longer or wider than that is going to present problems, especially if the job itself is bigger than 10m long.

Petrol Hedge Trimmers

While on the more expensive end, petrol hedge trimmers are a blessing for any gardener who needs to cut a large amount of hedges. Made for the professional, these types of trimmers are a great alternative to electric pruners, because they do not rely on batteries or an extension to keep them running.

Cutting a roadside hedgerow is simple with a petrol hedge trimmer, which come double-edged or single sided. While heavier and requiring a little more know-how, you could clear out an entire maze in a matter of hours.

But the smell and the mess might put some people off. This Echo Petrol Hedgetrimmer can get any professional size job done, powered by petrol for a clean, fast cut.