Good Garden Hedge Maintenence – Become the world’s best hedge trimmer!

by Jack Gardener on October 8, 2009 · 0 comments

in Garden Tools

Our hedges mark out the edge of our property, enabling us to enjoy privacy and security on our land – however big or small that may be!

During the summer months these wonderful green walls grow wildly and lose their formation and so require trimming at least twice a year to keep them under control. This also maintains the good health of your hedge. Keeping your hedges pruned and trim will also improve the appearance of your garden and home.

An Electric trimmer makes light work for those even with the biggest of gardens and will save you many hours compared to tackling the job with a pair of shears! There are a number of different types of hedge trimmer on the market it’s worth bearing in mind these differences before you make your purchase to ensure you buy the type of trimmer right for you, your garden and your hedge.

Power Source

A hedge trimmer can be powered by either electricity, battery or petrol. Electrical hedge trimmers are lightweight and have an immediate and continual energy source. However this type of trimmer will need to be plugged into your mains supply of electricity. So check that the cord length on your trimmer will stretch from your mains socket to the furthest point of your hedge. You may need a pretty long extension cord. Remember you will not only be trimming the hedge inside of your garden but also on the side which is facing out of your garden. This power source is not ideal if you have a large garden and also can be dangerous (you will be at risk of cutting through the mains power cord.) Circuit breakers are advised!

The battery option is very popular, this type of trimmer has a rechargeable energy source and is extremely clean and efficient to use. It has no power cord so is far less dangerous than the electric trimmer. Do remember though to charge the batteries for up to 7 hours before carrying out any cutting activity. The battery trimmer is less powerful than the petrol version which may in fact suit female or slightly older gardeners as it is easier to handle.

Petrol trimmers are often heavy noisy and smokey but boy do they trim! With no charging necessary simply top this type up with petrol and away you go. This is definitely a version worth considering especially if you have a large hedge to tackle.

Trimmer Blades

A hedge trimmer can cut using either a single or double action.  On single action trimmers the top blade oscillates cutting against the lower stationary blade, where as the double action trimmer has a pair of double sided toothed blades that slide back and forth at a high speed enabling you to sweep across your hedge in both directions. This type of trimmer is far more efficient and effective.
Blade length should play a big part in your purchasing decision. Firstly consider the size of your hedge – if you have large areas of hedgerow choose a trimmer with a larger blade as they will save you a lot of effort in the long run. However, the bigger the blade the more power your trimmer will require. So a heavier motor will be used which will be noisier than on a shorter bladed trimmer. Blade lengths range from 14-30 inches. Blade widths will also vary, this is the space inbetween the teeth on the blade and the maximum thickness a trimmer can cut through. For instance a 20mm blade can cut through a 20mm branch maximum.

Special features on a trimmer

Some manufacturers are using special features on their hedge trimmers to increase ease of use. Some of these worth looking out for are the following:

Double position trimmers – Enables extended reach whilst on the ground by allowing you to adjust the handle into a right angle from the blade so you can successfully cut horizontally across the top of the hedge.
Clipping collector – As you trim any stray cuttings are collected giving your hedge a neater finish.
Automatic cut out – Safety feature
Hand Guard – Safety feature that protects you from the moving blades.

Whichever trimmer you believe to be right for you and your garden do remember that with a rotating blade all hedge trimmers are dangerous items which need responsible use.

Here are my top safety tips:

  • Keep all people, children and animals out of the area you are working within.
  • Always hold the hedge trimmers correctly using two hands.
  • Always switch off and allow the blades to fully stop before attempting to remove any jam.
  • Wear protective clothing and safety goggles to protect yourself.
  • Do not use an electric trimmer in wet weather
  • Electrical trimmers – ensure cord is kept well away from the blade and where you are cutting at all times.

Alternatively for an easy life check out our fantastic range of garden fencing panels that are a wonderful alternative to time consuming hedges!

Happy trimming!

Gardener Jack :)

About The Author

Jack Gardener has been gardening all his life, and is passionate about passing on his experience to the next generation of gardeners.

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