Finding shears for maintaining and pruning your hedge can be daunting if you don’t know what to look out for. So, I have put together a list of my preferred shears for garden hedge trimming.
Trimming hedges is a tedious job, right? Therefore having the right garden shear suited to your budget and purpose is important. You can make the task a whole lot easier, maybe even pleasurable armed with the right tool.
I am often asked “what are the best garden shears to buy?” or “do I need an extendable shear?”
With a wealth of experience I hope to help you in making the right decision when purchasing garden shears that will be a pleasure to use and give years of untroubled service. All of the models listed consistently receive rave reviews and are models tested (and used) by myself.
Best Garden Shears for 2020 – my reviews
- Spear and Jackson RazorSharp
- Davaon Pro Geared Hedge Shears
- Tabor Tools Telescopic Hedge Shears
- Spear & Jackson Geared Hedge Shears
- Gardena Comfort 700T
- Fiskars SmartFit HS86
- Fiskars PowerGear HSX92
Spear & Jackson Hedge Shears
No strangers to manufacturing fantastic value for money garden tools. Spear and Jackson have not disappointed with this model which although fairly cheap deserve a place on my reviewed best garden shears list.
The chrome plated, hardened steel blade will resist rusting. Out of the box it is also extremely sharp. This model comes in at 960 grammes in weight therefore these shears are one of the lightest reviewed. As standard this hedge shear comes with a manufacturers defects 10 year warranty.
Excellent value for money from a well respected and long standing manufacturer. Rasor sharp blade will cut through hedge material with ease. Only slight concern is the hollow handles and how long this model would last with anything more than occasional use.
Davaon Pro Geared Garden Hedge Shears
If you find prolonged use of hedge shears tiring then my advise is to look at geared models like this Davaon model.
With its geared mechanism, aluminium handles and its lightweight, the Davaon Pro shear offers fantastic value for money for an entry level hedge shear. My only concern is how low the soft grip handles will last?
Tabor Tools Telescopic Hedge Shears
The Tabor B212E was a great telescopic shear for the price. The wavy edge blade makes cutting through vegetation marginally easier.
When extended, the shear has a total reach of 84cm. Therefore making it easier to trim the top of taller hedges, especially when you can only get to one side of the hedge.
I found them to be well made and balanced. They are 1.5kg in weight owing to the extra metal to make this model telescopic but did not find my wrists and arms aching after use.
Not feeling as heavy duty as other models I would recommend this model for light occasional use
Spear & Jackson Geared Hedge Shears
Much like the Spear & Jackson model above, the build quality is great on these shears only this model is the geared version. Geared versions of hedge pruners really do make all the difference. You have to try it to believe it!
The blade has a PTFE coating, which makes cutting smoother and I also found them easier to clean after use.
As a professional gardener I would probably go for something a bit more heavy duty, but for the price and quality this model is perfect for the homeowner looking for a hassle free garden shear for that yearly trim.
Gardena Comfort 700T Hedge Clippers
I found these garden hedge shears from Gardena a pleasure to trial and think they are a very well manufactured tool.
The telescopic function works extremely well and holds firmly in place when extended unlike some models that extend by turning and twisting the handle.
Would most sdefinitely recommend this hedge shear for taller hedges.
Fiskars SmartFit HS86 Telescopic Hedge Shears
Fiskars tools probably make up around 70% of the total of all my garden tools for 2 reasons. The quality and the price.
I found these a complete pleasure to use. They are the lightest telescopic shears on my best hedge shears list and also the longest (when extended).
If your looking for a heavy duty telescopic hedge shear, one that gets more than a few uses per annum then this model from Fiskars will not let you down.
Fiskars HSX92 PowerGear Hedge Shear
As with all Fiskars tools these are an exceptionally good quality, well constructed shear . The added PowerGear technology makes for easier hedge cutting therefore a great feature if you struggle with weak hands or arthritis.
At 808g these are light, well balanced and suitable for daily / professional use.
With the fantastic build quality we’ve come to expect from Fiskars, the units weight and PowerGear technology these are an exceptional garden shear.
Best Garden Shears
All of the above are great hedge shears and will (hopefully) give you years of use. My personal favourite is the Fiskars HSX92.
Being a professional gardener I need tools that can cut & trim hedges and shrubs on almost a daily basis. So, I found the HSX92 to be a solid, well built, razor sharp shear suited to my purpose.
All of the hand held shears reviewed and made for the trimming hedges and not for cutting grass (although they could serve that purpose I suppose)
Guide to Hedge Trimming
Looking after your Shears.
As with all garden tools, a little bit of care after use will keep them in good order and should give you years of trouble free, efficient use.
Maintaining garden shears is the same maintenance routine as with all type of pruning tools.
Step 1.) With some warm soapy water (washing up liquid will do) carefully wash both blades, using a kitchen nylon scourer, removing any sticky residue from the hedge cutting. Word of caution, do not use wire brushes or scourers on the blades is they have a special coating ie PTFE
Step 2.) Throughly dry the shears with some kitchen towel or old rag.
Step 3.) Apply WD40 to the blade and central mechanism. This will keep the blade from rusting and the unit nicely lubricated for the next use.
Hedge Trimming – Popular Hedges
Yew Hedges (Taxus baccata)
Evergreen Yew hedges are one of the most forgiving when it comes to trimming & shearing.
Unlike other conifers, Yew hedges will regenerate even if you have to trim far back towards the central trunk.
You can use your garden shears on Yew at anytime of the year, apart from in freezing weather.
If you need to drastically reduce the width of an overgrown hedge it is best to prune back hard one side and leave the remaining side full of growth. The following year prune back hard the remaining side.
Doing alternate sides like this means the hedge is still getting plenty of energy which helps with its regrowth. Yew is quite sappy, always give your shears a good clean straight after use.
A nicely groomed Laurel hedge looks stunning, a bad one looks terrible.
The key to getting the best out of a Laurel hedge is picking the right time to trim and importantly, the right tool.
For an absolutely perfect Laurel hedge I prefer to use secateurs but this is REALLY time consuming on anything other than a small front garden hedge.
Alternately use garden hand shears or petrol / electric shears. The key to a lovely looking hedge using shears is timing. Trim in late Spring as new growth will cover any tatty, half cut leaves.
Privet Hedge Trimming
Privet is the fastest growing hedge of them all, as such they need trimming up to 3 times a year.
Best cut from early May onwards but you will want to carry out the last cut np later than mid – late summer. Leave it too late and the first frosts will damage new growth.
As always, super sharp blades are advisable and a good clean of your shears after trimming is advisable.