Like anything else in life, gardening comes with a fair share of tasks and upkeep.
However, one of the most challenging tasks is pruning away the dead, damaged, and unsightly parts of your plants and trees.
Pruning, especially the fruits trees is crucial for their longevity and increased fruit yield. Besides increased fruit yield, pruning is necessary to expose your trees to more evenly light, get rid of excess leaders and create a balanced tree that will bear weight well.
Our Top Recommendation for Pruning Shears and Hand Pruners!
The FELCO F2 06870 classic hand pruner is a combination of beauty and performance. The rubber-cushioned handgrip is designed in such a way that it absorbs the shock during the pruning of hard branches and wire. The blades are strong, and there is a wire cutting notch too. Moreover, the hardened bolt and nut assure exact adjustment of both the cutting and anvil blades.
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However, as it turns out, pruning is not a simple task, especially if you`re using the traditional or unconventional tools.
But you don’t necessarily have to call a professional landscaper or arborist to help you with this simple task.
6 Best Pruning Shears
|Felco F-2 Classic Manual Hand Pruners||• Classic piece|
• Strong blades
|The Gardener's Friend Pruning Shears||• Triple ratchet system|
• Soft rubber hand grip
• Looped handle
|Bypass Pruning Shears||• 45 degrees’ angle for ergonomic handling|
• SK5 Carbon Steel grade
• Padded handles
|ARS HP-VS8Z Signature Heavy Duty Pruner||• Squeeze-Open and Lock System|
• Replaceable blades
• Rust Free
|ClassicPRO Titanium Pruning Shears||• Titanium blades|
• Remarkable design
• Inbuilt sap grooves
• Aluminum handles
|Heavy Duty Ratchet Hand Pruner||• Hassle-free pruning|
• Great garden tool clippers
• Excellent arthritis tool
• Shock absorbing pads
Finding a quality pruning shear is not as popping into your local gardening store and picking the first pair you see. A quality pruning shear is what you need for this job.
The best hand pruner will allow you to make your pruning process more effective, and precise
You need to put your needs first, consider what you’re looking for and consider a variety of factors.
However, we’ve made the selection process easier for you by rounding up the top 5 hand shears on the market.
#1. Felco F-2 Classic Manual Hand Pruners
Rumor has it there’s a secret password to freely get inside every conservatory, arboretum and botanical garden in the US.
Though spoken in hushed tones, right here and now, you’re going to read the password in print for the first time.
That password is Felco F-2.
Ok, there’s no such thing, but if there were, I bet it would be the Felco-F2
Starting on our list of the best pruning shears 2023 is the Felco F-2. Like all the Felco products, this shear does not disappoint.
It’s full of exciting features that will make you relish every moment of your gardening.
Featuring high-quality and hardened steel blades, the F-2 is robust and will last for a lifetime. With the steel construction, the F-2 will not skimp on performance and can handle any plant material including twigs, dry branches, supple stems, and leaves, without compromising on quality.
Further underlining on the performance of the F-2 is a wire cutting notch that allows you to cut the small wires without damaging the cutting edges.
When it comes to handling, the F-2 has taken ease of use and convenience to new heights.
For a start, this hand shear comes with an ergonomic design for the ultimate convenience.
Alongside the ergonomics, the handle of the F-2 is reinforced using a rubber cushion that will act as shock absorbers, thus softening the impact upon finishing cutting.
Finally, weighing a modest 8.5 ounces, the F-2 is extremely lightweight, and will not tire you even when used for an extended period.
The F-2 stands-out as a garden workhorse, capable of finely pruning your roses as well as taking one inch-limbs off your trees and plants.
Pros & Cons
- Cuts up to 1-inch diameter
- Only Ideal for large hands
#2. The Gardener’s Friend Pruning Shears
Traditionally, pruning shears have always required a certain amount of hand strength to operate them properly.
Now, here’s the problem. Most of these shears are just too difficult to use, especially for those with compromised hand strength, mobility and function.
However, The Gardeners Friend Pruners are an exception to this rule thanks to their dedicated design.
The Gardeners pruners were designed with comfort and usability in mind, meaning if you suffer from debilitating hand mobility problems such as chronic pain, Carpel Tunnel Syndrome, or arthritis, you can still enjoy gardening.
Thanks to the prominent curvature of the blade, you can now cut all types of plant matter. Therefore, whether you’re looking to cut the tender flowers, the young buds, the sturdy leaves, or the one-inch branches, these hand shears provide the perfect tool for a wide array on the outdoor gardening chores.
When it comes to the design, we like the fact that the tool is ambidextrous, thanks to the left and right-hand locks.
Moreover, the shear comes with an ergonomic design alongside a rubberized handle that absorbs the shock and offers the ultimate pruning experience.
While the three-tier ratchet design will provide ease of use, the rubberized handle provides a soft grip. In other words, The Gardeners Friend Pruner is an ideal pruner for every user. And whether you have arthritis, fibromyalgia, or any other condition that may limit your hand mobility, the Gardener Friends is designed with you in mind.
Pros & Cons
- Easy to use
- Tailored for individuals with hand mobility
- Replaceable blade
- Rubberized handle
- Stiff upon first use
- Opening the shears is not intuitive
Read more: 10 Best Electric Grass Shears Review
#3. Bypass Pruning Shears
If you`re looking for the most versatile pruner type, you need to choose Bypass shear.
And when it comes to Best Bypass Pruners, you can never go wrong with the Cate’s Garden Bypass Pruning Shears.
For years, Cate’s Garden has been manufacturing state of the art gardening equipment that is durable, convenient and affordable.
The Cate’s Garden Bypass Shear is no different. This shear has excelled in the gardening domain and will provide a pleasurable gardening experience.
What users like about the Bypass blade construction is that it has been made with extra care, while paying attention to detail and time has been spent to achieve a quality blade that will retain its strength and sharpness even after repeated use. So, with this tool, you don`t need to worry about constant sharpening.
Other defining features on the cutting quality include the 3/4 –inch cutting capacity, and a sap grooved lower blade to improve on cleaning and reducing gumming.
The Bypass is ergonomically designed and comes with 45 degree angled blades that will allow you to prune the awkward angles, and difficult to reach places without the need of painful twisting of your wrist.
The quality sculpted build of the handles, which feature an anti-slip thermoplastic (TPS) padding will allow you to use the pruner without the fear of the “slipping off” as it happens with the cheaper models. Besides restricting slipping, TPS is also handy in absorbing the shock for a continued comfort over an extended period.
Sporting an easy lever snap forged aluminum lock, the Bypass won’t loosen for accidental locking or unlocking.
Pros & Cons
- Bypass blades for a neat and precise cut
- 3/4-inch cutting capacity
- No need of constant sharpening
- Extremely ergonomic
- Easy to operate
- For optimal operation, the blades must always remain sharp
#4. ARS HP-VS8Z Signature Heavy Duty Hand Pruner
4th on our list of the best hand pruners is the ARS HP-VS8Z.
The ARS is for the hardcore gardeners and is considered a professional hand pruner.
Like the best hand pruners on our list, the ARS features sharp and quality blades. Uniquely, however, the ARS blades can be replaced and resharpened.
What we like about this pruner is that the blade design is already offset for you to have a natural hand force. Plus, the blades are chrome-plated for a rust-free experience.
To prevent against the effects of rust, the ARS blades are chrome plated using a process known as electroplating. Besides preventing rust, the chrome plating also prevents the buildup of sap and resin, meaning your blades won`t get gummed.
If you’re observant, you’ll notice that the shear comes with a spring located between the handles. The cushioning spring is crucial for getting the handles smashed together.
When you squeeze the cushioning spring, the handles move slowly and conveniently without making any noise.
Undoubtedly, the ARS is a hard-core hand shear that will address all your pruning needs.
Pros & Cons
- Easy to use
- Easy to disassemble
- Ideal for heavy-duty tasks
- Rust free
#5. ClassicPRO Titanium Pruning Shears
Made for the professional and home use, the ClasscPro is the ideal choice for the toughest gardening challenges.
The striking design of this hand pruning tool is assured to make you fall in love with it.
Strong and powerful, this shear is equally sturdy and has employed sharp titanium blades to tackle any task.
So whether you`re looking for a tool to tackle tree branches, shrubs, hedges and orchards, is strong enough, yet tender, and precise on the delicate rose stems, ornamentals and flowers.
Designed from high-quality Japanese Grade stainless steel hardened blades, the ClassicPro blades are more durable than the traditional blades.
Again, like the Felco-2 we reviewed earlier, this hand pruner also comes with a micrometric adjustable system that will allow you to make manual adjustments of the cutting blades depending on the task at hand.
If you’re observant, you’ll notice that the blades on this shear have in-built sap grooves, whose function is to prevent gumming of sap, and allow easy cleaning. What these grooves do is to channel off the sap from the bypass blades and allow easy cleaning of debris.
Built for hard use, the Classic-pro will provide smooth and precise action, and most importantly, they’re designed to deliver maximum force with minimum pressure.
Pros & Cons
- Built for hard use
- Ideal for senior
- Ideal for those with hand mobility issues
Read more: 10 Best Pruning Saw Reviews
#6. Heavy Duty Ratchet Hand Pruner
The heavy-duty ratchet hand pruner weighs 0.2 kilograms and has dimensions of 8x3x1 inches. Earlier, pruning shears required a lot of strength to make them work. Thus, shears proved to be very difficult to use.
But, this garden-friendly pruner is made with the most comfort for the user these days. This latest tool has kept in mind the usage, amount of work to be done, hand mobility issues, and a lot more.
Now, do you think gardening is fun?
The heavy-duty ratchet hand pruner comes with long handle grip garden shears that come with shock-absorbing features to ensure your safety.
It is a conveniently engineered pruner with a ratcheting function. We love this pruner because of its anti-slip, attractive black cushion handle.
This incredibly engineered pruner has a ratcheting function, along with an anti-slip black cushion handle. Apart from this, the long handle grip garden possesses shock-absorbing pads to safeguard you from repetitive garden pruner motion injuries, hand fatigue, and wrist strain.
With this feature, there is very little hand power to prune. It is a top-rated gardening tool as though we have made it for heavy-duty use. But, this tool saves our energy because we don’t need to apply much force to use it. Its effortless usage makes it comfortable for hunters and farmers to use this tool in everyday life.
Consistent Since 1988
There is a very high-quality aluminum body made for these garden clippers. They are SK5 Hardened Carbon Steel Blade with a Non-Stick Coating. We believe that with its careful design, we can use this tool for a lifetime without any damage! So, once you buy this pruner, you will not have to buy any other pruner for a long time.
Chop-off 1.5-inch Branches
Sharper edges make it easier and quicker to finish off the tasks. Thus, this tool comes with the largest cutting capacity and hence, can cut to 1.5-inch branches. Alongside, this tool is highly efficient in circle cutting. So, the next time you want to chop something heavy off, you know what to use!
Incredible for Women & Senior Gardeners
Using this tool consumes less time compared to other cutters. Hence, it is a benefit for all of us. Also, the hands of women are usually delicate, weak, and soft. Thus, for them working with such heavy-duty tools is challenging. So, the device is an ideal versatile trimmer for general yards, farming, hunting, and other multi-purpose pruning works.
If you are aging and getting weak, don’t worry about retirement. This pruner will still help you continue with your work as you hardly need to exert any amount of force. So, even a weak person can use this tool.
Pros & Cons
- Easy usage
- Only meant for heavy duty work
How to Buy the Best Hand Pruners & Pruning Shears?
Though we’re all gardeners, everyone has varying needs, meaning that no shear is one-size fits all.
Therefore, when choosing the best gardening pruner, you need to consider varying factors to get a pruner that works best for you.
Let’s look at some of these factors;
There`re three types of pruning shears, with each type designed for a slightly different use. Ideally, the best type is the bypass design, but not always.
The bypass pruners are like a pair of scissors which pass each other with the material to be cut in between them.
The benefit of the bypass pruners is the result to clean and neat cuts, provided the blades are sharp.
The anvil pruners are slightly different from the bypass in that a single blade lowers down and pushes against a flat surface.
Though not as versatile as the bypass blades, they are more accommodating and can work even when slightly blunt.
They are ideal for thick branches.
The ratchet pruners use a special mechanism to cut through branches even when the user has hand mobility issues.
They require the use of multiple actions to perform a single cut. The ratchet shears are mainly used by those with arthritis or other muscular/strength issues.
With respect to pruners, size refers to the size your garden shear can cut.
The shears sizes range considerably from anywhere from ½ inches to 1.5 inches.
If you’re using your shears for small soft plants, then it’s okay to use any size. However, if you’re looking to prune the woody shrubs, twigs, or large plants, choose a shear with ¾ inches s the least size.
Alternatively, if you`re not good with estimating, you can check on the manufacturer’s recommendations to see which size the shears can deal with easily.
When pruning, you want to work comfortably, without getting bogged by the weight of your pruner, especially if you tend to prune for long hours each day.
Therefore, when choosing your ideal pruner choose a pruner with a weight which you`re comfortable with.
Remember that even for short-term use, a heavy pruner will put a strain in your hands just by holding them so choose your pruner wisely.
The material of the Blade
The material of the blade plays an essential role in the performance of the pruner.
There’re dozens of options to choose from with regards to the material of the blade.
However, the metal-based blades such as aluminum or steel should be a good bargain for your pruning needs.
In most cases, the metal-based blades are durable, sturdy and effective.
Besides the blade material, also look out for those with a coating that improves on the performance of the blade.
For instance, one of the most popular coatings is chrome or titanium, which help in preventing rusts as well as improving the overall aesthetics of the blade.
Good ergonomics will ensure that you have a hassle-free and comfortable pruning experience.
Proper ergonomics will also ensure that you`re able to prune the hard to reach spots without necessarily having to twist your wrists painfully.
Ergonomics range from padding of the handles, gear and a joint mechanism for less strain to angled blades.
Ease of Disassembling and Availability of Materials
As time passes, you will need to maintain and sharpen your pruners.
Therefore, it`s essential that when choosing a pruner, look for one that is easy to disassemble with the least effort.
Also, ensure that you find a pruner that you can replace individual parts easily, and whose manufacturers produce these parts for.
Ans: A majority of the shears have blades that can be resharpened, meaning you don`t have to throw them away or replace them when they go dull. Instead, you can sharpen the blades using a hand file, or get a professional do the job or you.
Ans: Most of the pruning shears are designed to cut through relatively thin plants and stems. In any case, as we mentioned above, pruners can only tackle anything that is within their size, which is mostly 1-inch in size.
Ans: Once you`re done with your shears, wipe them and ensure they`re completely dry before stowing them.
Store them somewhere safe and dry. And for safety reasons, keep them away from kids, and always store them with the blades closed and locked
Having a quality pruner will ensure that you perform your pruning more efficient and fast.
Now that you have a list of the top 5 pruners in the market, your pruning task has become a lot easier.
Choose a pruner that you feel will address your gardening needs to your satisfaction.