A garden pruner is essential in garden maintenance. Every garden needs pruning every once in a while, and you can't do that without the proper tools.
Pruners come in a variety of types, each with their own uses and advantages over the others. Here's a list of those types and advantages to help you decide which one to buy for your own garden:
Types of garden pruners
There are three main types of garden pruners: bypass pruners, anvil pruners, and ratchet pruners.
Bypass pruners offer the most precise cutting with the least amount of damage dealt to the plants. Their two circular blades, working similarly to scissors, have one blade sharp and one blade dull to make clean cuts with every snip.
Bypass pruners are used primarily to cut soft wood of roughly 3/4 inch in diameter, which is what most gardeners need pruners for. The blades need to be sharpened regularly though, to keep the pruner working efficiently.
Anvil pruners are heavy duty pruners that have only one cutting blade, which closes on a flat edge. They work similar to how a knife cuts a piece of meat on a cutting board.
Anvil pruners are used for bigger and harder stems and branches, and they work better with dead foliage rather than fresh ones. They are not recommended for softer plants because the big blade and edge can crush the outer layer of the plants, which could cause disease. Additionally, they are very big and bulky, so you should only buy them and use them if you have big, tough branches to cut.
Ratchet pruners are used for similar purposes as anvil pruners, which is to cut bigger and harder stems and branches.
However, ratchet pruners do the cutting in stages. This allows you to gain more leverage when making a cut as the force is built up as the blade goes through the branch that you are cutting.
This method of cutting makes ratchet pruners useful for people who lack the physical strength to do major cutting in the garden using anvil pruners. However, the work will tend to go slower. The speed is sacrificed for better control of the tool.
Most garden pruning work can be accomplished through the use of bypass pruners. Anvil and ratchet pruners are designed specifically for the tougher pruning jobs.
Don't buy a pruner that's too big or too powerful for the job at hand, because such a pruner would only damage the plants that you are trying to care for.
Before buying a pruner, one important thing that you need to consider is the ergonomics of the tool.
The tool should have cushioned grips so that the tool will not be abrasive to your hands, especially when you need to apply higher amounts of force, such as when you are cutting tougher wood. Cushions on the grips will also ensure that the tool does not slip out of your hands.
Offset cutting angles are also another ergonomic feature that you can look for. An offset angle will assist you in cutting hard-to-reach areas that are flanked by branches and stems all around.
Curved handles on your garden pruner will also give you additional leverage, so you can hold the pruner more firmly. Curved handles will also feel more comfortable in your hand compared to straight rods.
The life of your garden pruner will depend on your maintenance.
Aside from regular sharpening of the cutting blades, your garden pruner should have replaceable parts so that you won't have to purchase a brand new one when a part becomes damaged.
Another way to extend the tool life of your garden pruners is to buy a complete garden pruner set, instead of just a single pruning device. By using a whole set of pruners for your garden, you will be able to use the most correct tool for each task, thus extending the life of the tools as a group.
There are three types of garden pruners: bypass pruners, anvil pruners, and ratchet pruners.
Bypass pruners are used for wood of 3/4 inch in diameter or less. Their precise cutting capabilities that cause the smallest possible damage to the plants make them popular choices for regular garden pruning use.
Anvil pruners are used for bigger stems and branches, and they work better for dead foliage than for fresh ones.
Ratchet pruners are used for similar purposes as anvil pruners, but they make the work easier by doing the cutting in stages. These are best for smaller people with less upper body strength.
Your garden pruner will be easier to use if they have cushioned grips, offset cutting angles, and curved handles.
The tool life for your garden pruner will increase if the tool has replaceable parts.
It is also a good idea to get a garden pruner set rather than just a single device, so that you can use the best tool for specific pruning tasks.