It can be a tedious job to shear hedges with your hand. It can be more difficult if you are not using the right hedge shear for your task. The best hedge shears are available in varied sizes and designs. Knowing which type of hedge shear to use will make things a lot easier.
What Is A Hedge Shear?
Simply put, a hedge shear is a gardening tool that looks like a giant scissors. It usually comes with straight and long blades often less than a foot and a wave-like edge so it can easily keep the stems in place while cutting.
Unlike other pruning tools, a hedge shear has long blades so it can cut more with every stroke. Since its blades are straight, the plant ends up having straight edges. Straight edges are not the ideal shape for plants. It is not also the right way to take care of most plants.
You actually can do without a hedge shear in your arsenal of garden tools. A hedge shear is needed only for the maintenance of formal hedges as well as for cutting back ornamental grasses and perennials during spring and fall.
Loppers, saws and pruners are the right tools when you need to shape plants.
Top 5 Best Hedge Shears
Reasons To Use Hedge Shears
Every home gardener should have a hedge shear because it ensures a well-manicured and well-maintained garden. There are a lot of tools you can use to achieve an aesthetically beautiful garden. A hedge shear though is different:
- This tool makes sure your garden is tidy, clean and neat.
- There are different kinds of hedge shears for different cutting needs.
- This tool is readily available in almost all garden stores.
- It is easy to use and operate. Manual hedge shears come with a very basic operation. Rechargeable and gas powered hedge shears does not require too much knowledge to operate.
- Handheld hedge shears are often lightweight. Most gardeners opt to use handheld hedge shears because aside from being cheaper, it is easy to use, and it is easier to sharpen the blades.
- This tool is easy to clean. However when using with different plants you should clean them regularly so they do not contaminate each other. The blade needs occasional oiling to maintain its sharpness.
Hedge shears should always be a part of a gardener’s collection of tools.
When To Use A Hedge Shear
Hedge shears are used to cut decorative shrubs and almost any type of plants. Hedge shears are available in different sizes and power source options. The choice of type of hedge shear largely depends on where the tool will be used on and the personal preference of the gardener.
Many gardeners use hedge shears in at least three gardening tasks.
Formal Hedge Maintenance
This is exactly what a hedge shear was designed for thus its name. When used to cut a soft newly grown plant in a straight line, it will leave a geometric edge.
Cutting Back Of Perennials
Perennials need cutting to their crowns depending on the type of plant and the aesthetic style you want to achieve. Hedge shears are ideal for this type of job because the cuts do not need to be precise, only for cutting dead and soft stem tissues.
Hedge shears work best with soft plants such as lilyturf, hostas, catmint and many of the ornamental grasses and perennials.
Hedge shears are however not ideal for thinning cane plants and semi-woody perennials that have stem bases with hard tissues.
Annual Taming Of Soft Plants
Soft plants that grow fast are better tamed with hedge shears because hand pruning will take so much time.
Picking The Best Hedge Shear
There are certain factors you need to look for to ensure you pick the best hedge shear.
Short blades of about six inches long and short handles are ideal when you need to do up—close jobs. When you are up for big jobs, long blades of between nine to twelve inches with long handles are most ideal.
It is important to choose the right blade size because the blades should only touch the part of the plant that needs cutting. This is to as much as possible prevent the blade from sticking and causing possible friction.
Most straight blades are made of forge steel material. Hedge shears with serrated blades on either one or both sides are ideal for cutting and gripping 1/5 inch and larger twigs. Blades with non-stick coatings have less chances of rusting and gumming up.
It is important to always have sharp blades. Straight blades are easy to sharpen with a simple sharpening tool or a mill stone. It is also important that blades are easily taken apart when they need sharpening.
Hedge shears with wavy-like blades can easily grip open-structured twigs to prevent them from sliding off the blades when cutting. Wavy-like blades can only be sharpened by professionals.
Blades should be easy to adjust thus you should opt for a hedge shear with an easy-to-adjust pivot-bolt assembly. The pivot-volt assembly is the part of a hedge shear that is first to give way. It is therefore important that pivot bolts replacements are readily available.
Weight and Size
It is important that you are comfortable with the weight of the hedge shear you choose. Trimming often requires you to lift the tool above your shoulders, hence a heavy tool can easily get you tired.
Hedge shear handles of fiberglass or aluminum are lighter. Shears with wooden handles are heavier.
Hedge shears work well in cutting branches with diameters no more than 1/2 inch. Some shears are equipped with a blade limb notch so the cutting limit can be extended.
Cutting mechanism using the geared technology makes cutting larger branches a breeze. If you often shear your shrubs, this additional power will work well to your advantage.
Easy To Use
Test the hedge shear before buying. Some shears open and close easily while others need more effort. Handle grips with cushions are comfortable for the hands even during extended use. The bumper system for the handle should also have shock-absorbing features for your comfort.
Availability Of Replacement Parts
It is important to choose hedge shears with easy-to-find replacement parts. The blade and other parts of the hedge shear will wear over time. Availability of replacement parts will allow you to use your hedge shears for many years.
Top 5 Best Hedge Shear Reviews
Passionate gardeners or anyone who wants to have their garden and plants in top condition should own the best hedge shear. There are various selections to choose from.
Check out these reviews of some of the best hedge shear so you can make an intelligent choice on which to purchase.
TABOR TOOLS Extendable Hedge Shears
Tabor tools shear has unique features to ensure a manageable and convenient experience while going about hedge trimmings. The tool features wavy blades for precise cuttings and bumpers for shock absorption to control vibrations while the tool is in use.
- Extendable telescopic steel handles with non-slip grips are lightweight and comfortable.
- Telescopic 25 inch long handle is extendable to 33 inches to reach high branches.
- Features wavy –like blades are sharp and made from durable and high quality carbon steel for precise cutting for the well-being of
- Ideal for shaping and trimming bushes, shrubs and borders as well as decorative grass and plants.
What We Liked
- Sturdy, durable and reliable tool
- Telescopic handles are extendable above the hedges to as much as 33 inches.
- Shock-absorbing bumpers reduce vibrations of the tool which in turn reduce shoulder and arm fatigue.
- Wavy blades are sharp ensuring precise cuttings
What We Didn't Like
- Twist lock easily opens making it extremely dangerous
The Tabor Tools extendable hedge shear is convenient and efficient. It is easy to handle and manage.
ARS HS-KR1000 Professional Hedge Shears
This hedge shear tool is of high quality. It is equipped with a sharp steel blade which is durable for a long time. The blades can be replaced when they are no longer as sharp as it used to be.
This hedge shear from ARS is of professional grade quality. It comes with unique features such as easy to use and replaceable blades. It comes with a simple and basic design which makes it a big hit to many gardeners.
- Pair of hedge shear with a solid and durable construction pair of hedge shear
- Made from durable and top quality material
- Unique narrow design with special balance and shape for long usage
- Comes with strong screws to keep blades securely in place
- Super sharp carbon steel blade can handle overgrown and unruly hedges.
- Steel blades are Marquench hardened
- Blades can be sharpened and replaced
- Blades are plated with hard chrome making it resistant to sap and rust
- Lightweight design with ergonomic handles for comfort while in use
- High grade aluminum handles
- Comes with large shock absorbers for reduced arm fatigue while in use
What We Liked
- Special balance and shape design ideal for home use
- Replaceable blade
- Ideal for cutting flowers, leaves and hedges
- Made of durable high quality materials
- Extremely sharp
- Easy to use and lightweight
What We Didn't Like
- A bit pricey
- A bit small
- A bit uncomfortable when cutting hedges
This 24 1/2 inch hedge shear with a 7 inch blade has been designed to efficiently manicure topiaries and shrubs.
Fiskars 23 Inch PowerGear Hedge Shears
This Fiskars hedge shear is ideal for people who want to continue maintaining their gardens even if they have arthritis. It is for that purpose that the features of this hedge shear is geared toward their easy and comfortable use of the tool.
- Easy to use makes it a highly recommended tool for arthritis stricken gardeners and also for those with other physical ailments.
- Blades work well for trimming and shaping shrubs and hedges.
- Comes with a non-circular gearing mechanism improving the force when cutting toward the mid-section of the cut.
- Lightweight and durable DuraFrame steel handles for your own comfort even for extended hours
- Comes with a lifetime warranty
What We Liked
- Ideal tool for users with arthritis
- Durable steel handles
- Non-circular gear mechanism enhances cutting through hedges by as much as three times more.
What We Didn't Like
- Blades tend to easily bend and becomes dull
- Pivot pin makes the tool unsuitable for long use because it may snap.
This Fiskars hedge shear is gentle on the hands and can cut even thick and unruly hedges. Since the blades tend to bend easily, this is not a very durable hedge shear.
ARS 28- to 41-1/2-Inch Hedge Shears HS-K900Z
This ARS hedge shears aluminum handles can extend from its original 28-inch length to as long as 41 ½ inches. It is equipped with high carbon blades that are chrome-plated. It is ideal for trees and shrubs that are hard to reach.
- Telescopic type hedge shear from 2.4 feet to 3.5 feet
- Lightweight makes it convenient for extended use.
- Equipped with a 6 inch high carbon steel blade (nickel-plated) which comes with a smooth and powerful cutting capability which can cut cleanly up to 2.1 pounds
- Blades are sap and rust resistant
- Equipped with button with spring so handles can be extended and locked at 28 inches, 35 inches or 41 ½ inch lengths.
- Features aluminum handles can be adjusted into 3 different positions so deep shrubs and tall bushes can be easily reached.
- Features shock absorbers that are soft but absorb the cutting force.
What We Liked
- Long lasting and razor sharp blades
- Blades cut with accuracy and precision
- Handles have long and deep reach
- Lightweight but durable metal frame
- Comes with a spare blade
What We Didn't Like
This ARS hedge shear may not look so appealing but it comes with super sharp blades and top of the line performance. It can be expensive but is a worthwhile investment.
TABOR TOOLS Professional Aluminum Hedge Shears
This Tabor Tools hedge shear comes with maximum strength aluminum handles. The handles are comfortable to the hands even during extended use. This hedge shear is ideal for trimming boxwood, borders, bushes and decorative grass.
- Lightweight with smooth operation
- Razor-sharp ninja blade comes pre-hardened for smooth and precise cutting.
- Blades are made from high carbon steel which remains sharp even with constant use.
- Precise cutting maintains health of the plants
- Chrome plated blades for sap and rust resistance. It also makes the blade harder.
- Equipped with soft shock absorbers for minimal vibration while in use reducing fatigue on the arms and shoulder
What We Liked
- Delicate on plants thus preserving their health
- Lightweight but durable
- Great cutting capability
- Minimal vibration reduces fatigue on arms and shoulders
- Handles are a bit curved
- Easy and comfortable
What We Didn't Like
- A bit big
With comfortable handle and minimal vibration this tool can be used for extended hours without causing too much fatigued on the arms and shoulders.
Every homeowner who has a well-manicured landscape is the envy of neighbors. The best garden tools are necessary to achieve this goal. Hedge shears are able to cut and trim hedges and shrubs to make them have an aesthetic appeal.
Hedge shears are indispensable garden tools. When picking the right hedge shear always make sure how you are going to use it before making the purchase.
Best Hedge Shear - Winner
Of the hedge shears reviewed the ARS HS-KR 1000 hedge shear is the choice for the best hedge shear.
This ARS hedge shear has a total length of 24 ¼ inches, 7 inches of which is the length of the blade. The steel blades with chrome finish (plated) is Marquench hardened making it remain extremely sharp of long years. The blades leave a professional looking and clean finish for plants.
Ergonomic handles are made of lightweight aircraft grade aluminum with anti-slip grips. The tool comes with two shock absorbers to reduce vibrations while in use. This tool comes with a 2-year warranty.