For a lot of us, gardening is so much more than a chore: it’s a hobby that brings fruitful results. Having a beautiful garden around your home increases its value. It also makes every member of the family want to spend more time outdoors, which is something we should all be doing more often.
But to really bring out the potential of your outdoor space, you need to make sure you have the best garden scissors and the best pruning shears. After all, these tools made it to our A Nest With A Yard list of the best gardening tools.
Overwhelmed with the choices on the market and not sure what to look for? Don’t worry, I can help.
In a rush?
Let's take a quick glance at the products we will talk about here.
Why Buy Garden Scissors or Shears and What’s the Difference?
Scissors vs. Pruning Shears
Before continuing, I feel like there is one question I should address that many gardening beginners have in mind: what’s the difference between garden scissors and pruning shears?
While it’s not that difficult to see the visual differences between them, a lot of people think they can be used interchangeably. But, this isn’t the case and I’ll tell you why:
● Both scissors and shears are used for cutting, but they have different applications. Scissors are multi-purpose tools and are available in a lot of different designs, whereas shears are very limited in this aspect.
● Shears are often used for bigger gardening tasks because their blades are sharper and cut better. Scissors, being smaller and lighter, are better for smaller gardening tasks.
● When you have to cut big branches and leaves, shears are a much better choice. However, if you have a pair of scissors that are large and have very sharp blades, they just might be able to replace a pair of shears, if need be.
● Shears are large and sharp, which can make them difficult to use for gardening beginners. If you’re new to gardening, you might want to use scissors first and switch to shears when you’ve gained some cutting dexterity.
Types of Pruning Shears
Hand pruners are a must-have in the tool shed of every homeowner. But, in order to choose the very best pruning shears, one must first know the differences between each type.
When you come across a set of pruning shears, it falls into one of the three following categories:
● Anvil garden pruners, much like the name suggests, have a sharp blade that cuts through branches, stems, and plants by pushing them against a flat lower blade. Generally speaking, anvil garden pruners are very bulky, which makes them difficult to use in tight spaces or on plants with dense foliage.
● Bypass garden pruners have a cutting mechanism very similar to scissors. They are made with two blades that pass by each other when you close them, providing a very clean cut (assuming that the blades aren’t dull). Typically, one of the blades has a sharp external edge that passes by the other unsharpened blade.
● Ratchet garden pruners are anvil pruners with a ratchet mechanism. This means that the actual cutting process is done in stages. Designed for gardeners with less physical strength, ratchet pruners will lock onto the branch you’re trying to cut, adding more power to the blades.
Keep in mind that pruning shears are designed to be used with a single hand.
If you come across pruners that require two hands, they are called loppers and they are best suited for medium-size cuts. For really large and difficult cults, a pruning saw might be more useful.
6 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Buying Garden Scissors or Shears
Naturally, there is no “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to pruning shears. So, when you’re looking to buy the best garden scissors or the best pruning shears, remember that this is very subjective and dependent on your personal gardening needs.
A pair of pruners that works really great for someone with small hands will be very uncomfortable for someone with larger hands. With that in mind, before scouting the market for scissors and pruners, ask yourself the following questions:
● How much money am I willing to spend on a gardening tool? The market has everything from ridiculously cheap to rather expensive options.
● What exactly am I planning to cut? This is a very important question because scissors and pruning shears designed for cutting small shrubs will not work on thick branches. Conversely, you don’t want a bulky pair of pruners to trim rose bushes. You get the idea.
● How tall are the plants I want to trim? It’s important to avoid pruning anything above your height, as this increases the likelihood of you dropping the prunes or scissors and getting hurt.
● Do I have any health conditions that might limit my mobility? You’ll notice that some products are advertised as being easy to use by people with problems such as arthritis, so look out for this if you have health issues that make gardening difficult.
● Is durability important to me? If so, you want a product with a warranty against defects and preferably one that’s made from stainless steel.
● Do I have “butterfingers”? If you do, look for handles covered with an anti-slip material. This is also useful if your palms tend to sweat a lot during the summer.
If you want to get the best yield from your plants through pruning, check out this helpful video showing you just how to do that!
Know Before You Buy
One of the most valuable pieces of advice I like to give shoppers is to know the product before you buy it. Thankfully, in this era of the internet, there is so much information available online. So, it would be a shame to not do your homework and research a product before spending money on it.
Besides everything I’ve already told you above, there are three common and important questions that are often asked when it comes to pruning scissors and shears:
Q: Can pruning shears be sharpened?
A: Yes. In fact, sharpening your pruning shears is just as important as sharpening your kitchen knives. I’ll go into more detail on this below, but there are some important things to keep in mind.
Cleaning the blades of your shears is crucial to effective sharpening. You don’t want rust or gunk to get in the way. If you sharpen your knives, you may be able to use the same sharpening tool for your shears. This might be a special stone or another kind of sharpening tool.
The process of sharpening your shears is fairly simple: scrape the sharpener on the blade until the blade becomes sharp (you might need more strokes, depending on how dull the blade is).
Q: What are bypass pruning shears?
A: Unlike anvil pruners, which have a single sharp blade that moves past a flat blade for cutting, bypass pruning shears have the same mechanism as scissors: the top blade is as sharp as the bottom. When cutting with bypass pruning shears, the top blade passes by the lower one.
Q: What are pruning shears used for?
A: Pruning shears are a must-have tool for all homeowners who take particular interest in the health and look of their yard. With pruning shears, one can easily remove plant and bush branches that are either damaged or dead. This not only prevents unwanted growth, but also keeps the plants and bushes safe from pests and disease.
Prolonging the Lifespan of Your Scissors & Shears
As with every other gardening tool, you will have to care for your gardening scissors and pruning shears if you want to be able to enjoy them for years to come. While different in terms of their use, shears and garden scissors have similar maintenance requirements.
Cleaning Garden Scissors & Shears
When cleaning the blades of your scissors or shears, you may notice that there are multiple things you have to remove, from dirt to rust. While there is no rule saying you have to clean the blades before sharpening them, you want them to function at their best. So, make a habit out of cleaning your gardening tools for the best results and durability.
Surprisingly, it’s actually very simple to clean your garden scissors and shears and you most likely have the needed materials around your house.
Important note: the more often you clean the blades, the easier it is. When you haven’t cleaned them in a long time, the debris and potential rust covering them will take longer to get rid of.
Here are the steps:
- First, grab some dish soap and smear it over the blades.
- Allow the blades to soak with the soap on for a few minutes and then remove the soap using a damp cloth.
- If there’s lots of gunk on the blades, you might need a scrub brush and to put some elbow grease into it.
- Remember to clean the handles, as well.
It’s not uncommon even for the best garden scissors and pruning shears to end up with rusty blades. But it’s not a tragedy either because rust isn’t that difficult to get rid of. If you want to have the best pruning shears, you’ll have to remove some rust from time to time.
Follow these steps:
- Get a wire brush from Amazon.
- Start scrubbing the rust around the edges of the blades.
- When you’re done, use steel wool you can find on Amazon for the rust that’s on the blade itself.
- For difficult rust spots, put the wire brush into action again.
Again, depending on how much rust has accumulated on the blades, it can take anywhere between five minutes and half an hour to clean them, so frequent maintenance is key if you don’t want a triceps workout every time you clean your scissors or shears.
Sharpening the Blades
If you don’t own a sharpening tool, it’s high time you bought one. They come in different shapes and sizes, but for garden scissors and shears, files or small sharpening tools should do the trick.
Also, if you already have a scissor sharpening tool, there is a chance it will work on your shears as well, so give this a try before you go out shopping.
Sharpening your shears for the first time may seem a bit odd, but it’s something you’ll get the hang of after trying it a few times. It basically involves one repetitive motion, as you scrape the sharpener down the blade of your scissors or shears, making sure that you cover the full length of the blade in the process.
This can take a while, depending on how dull the blade is. If you have a set anvil pruners, only sharpen the blade used for cutting and leave the flat one alone. When you’re done, test the blade to make sure it cuts. You can cut a piece of paper or a few leaves or branches.
Here are two handy videos that show you the step-by-step process to turning dull and rusty blades into shiny and sharp cutting tools for your dream garden:
This is the second video:
Iconic Industry Brands & Values
Gonicc is a brand that manufactures different products for home use. The company was born back in 2000, which means they have nearly two decades of experience in a market that’s constantly developing. Gonicc has made it their mission to make their customer’s lives more enjoyable.
By 2005, the brand already had more than 100 items in their shop, including top-notch gardening tools, pet supplies, gadgets for kitchen use and also accessories for sports, such as knee sleeves and ankle braces.
Fast forward 16 years from the brand’s launch and their products are now sold in more than 20 countries, in all corners of the world, making Gonicc one of the most popular global brands in terms of home-use products.
Born in a village with the same name, Fiskars is a Finnish brand established back in 1649 and they have developed their products and brand power through the centuries. Once founder Peter Thorwöste established a blast furnace in this small Finnish village, the company quickly became well-known for making fine cutlery and sharp scissors.
Their orange-handle scissors are iconic and made with the recycled plastic left over from their juicer production. Today, the company has manufactured and sold more than 1 billion pairs.
There are many things that sets Fiskars apart from other brands: the thousands of workplaces they’ve created globally, their availability in more than 60 countries, and the lifetime guarantee that accompanies their premium products.
Based in Los Angeles, California, Vivosun is a brand that delivers a complete line of products for indoor gardening. With more than 10 years of experience in the field, Vivosun aims to be the brand that people turn to for their hydroponic and indoor gardening needs.
The company’s main focus is to be a global brand with a friendly approach, which is why they channel a major part of their efforts into providing around-the-clock customer care. They currently offer more than 200 products, ranging from fans and filters to lamps and reflectors.
Top 5 Garden Scissors & Pruning Shears
Gonicc Anvil Pruning Shears (Model GPPS-1011)
If you’re looking for a pair of pruning shears that are lightweight, yet extremely efficient for your gardening needs, these Gonicc beauties are bound to do your plants justice. Made with SK-5 steel, these shears are meant for precise cutting, making them ideal for shrubs, bushes, and thin tree branches.
The handle is made with a chrome vanadium steel, offering a tight grip thanks to the combination of the design and materials. The handle is also anti-slip, which is an important feature to have when you’re working with a sharp tool like this one.
These shears feature a ratcheting mechanism, which increases the pressure to offer a powerful cut all the way through. This mechanism works by identifying the different stages of a cut, adding power as the blade moves through whatever you’re cutting at the time.
The Gonicc 8” Anvil Pruning Shears aren’t just the best overall garden shears because of their quality, but also because of their impeccable customer service. Offering a lifetime guarantee, the company stands by its products and even offers replacements, free of charge.
Gardenite Power Drive Pruning Shears
When buying a garden tool designed for cutting, you should focus solely on the sharpness and quality of the blade. You also need to find a product that provides the best comfort possible because trimming your hedges shouldn’t be a chore, it should be a hobby.
These Gardenite pruning shears have an anvil-type of mechanism, which features a sharp blade that meets a flat lower blade. There’s also a ratcheting mechanism that promises to bring cutting comfort to the next level. As you start cutting, this mechanism latches onto the branch and then moves to the next setting, enhancing the power of the tool up to five times.
Because they are made to have a lot of power with less pressure, these Gardenite shears are designed for people with a not-so-powerful grip, or for people who have arthritis or carpal tunnel, etc.
However, there is one little flaw that doesn’t contribute to the usefulness of this feature and that’s the wide opening of the handles. This does, however, make these shears easier to use by people with larger hands.
The blades are made with carbon steel, meant to be strong and long-lasting. They are also coated with Teflon, so that even when you’re cutting through sap-covered branches, the blades won’t get all sticky.
Fiskars Pro Pruner
Let’s move on to the next level in gardening pruners because sometimes there’s heavier work to be done. While the two options I spoke of earlier are perfectly useful for smaller cuts, most of you will also need a pair of pruners for larger or more stubborn plants (like these ones).
These Fiskars pruners are best for big cuts and heavier work, functioning on a bypass system with adjustable blade tension. What I love about the Fiskars pruners is how durable they feel. Most other pruning shears feel a bit flimsy or cheaply made, even if they do prove their strength in the end. With Fiskars, it’s all about sturdiness and steel.
The angled blades are perfect for those awkward gardening situations where you’re trying to reach through branches to make a clean cut. Although the blade is sharp, the low-friction coating makes it easier to cut through branches without having much effort and prevents sap from getting all over the blades.
Even the handle is made from steel and it features an end loop, so you can hang the shears in the tool shed when you’re not using them. Unfortunately, there is no anti-slip material or design that prevents any potential accidents, but I strongly believe you’ll be fine, just as long as you use a good pair of garden gloves.
Gonicc Bypass Pruning Shears (Model GPPS-1002)
Sappy flora can be quite tricky to cut, particularly since the sap makes the blades of your shears all sticky and gooey. Because of this, you need a product like these Gonicc shears, which are the best for cutting sappy flora.
The blade is made with SK-5 carbon steel, but coated in order to prevent sap from getting in the way of a clean and precise cut. The handle is made from aluminum, making sure that it’s durable for the long term.
The aluminum handles are PVC coated, to prevent the shears from slipping through your hands. This safety feature is particularly important for those who don’t use gardening gloves. Hands can get sweaty and slippery during the summer, so an anti-slip coating is something you want to look for.
These lightweight pruning shears make them easy to use by people with small and large hands alike. While useful for light trims and cuts, make sure you also have the above mentioned Fiskars shears, for bigger and thicker branches.
Vivosun Pruning Shears
Not everyone is looking to invest in high-end gardening tools and that’s perfectly fine. If you’re not an avid gardener or you don’t have any difficult plants or shrubs to care for, you need an affordable, yet practical set of pruning shears. And here’s where Vivosun steps in.
These tiny pruning shears are small enough to fit into the tiniest of hands, giving you more dexterity when trimming your plants. The sturdy spring pushes open the blades once your hand pressure is released, to make cutting faster.
The blades are made with stainless steel, which not only adds durability to the product, but also helps them to cut clean, without pinching the plant in the process. However, the micro-blades make these shears suitable for finer cuts, particularly for flowers and vegetables, like tomatoes, berries, or beans.
These shears make a great addition to the toolbox of those passionate about indoor gardening, because of their precision and ease of handling. If you’re looking for the best pruning shears on a budget, you really can’t go wrong with this Vivosun pair.
Best Garden Scissors: A Clear Winner
For both beginner and expert gardeners, I recommend the Gonicc Anvil Pruning Shears from Amazon because they offer a complete list of features that can benefit any landscape. The quality blades are combined with a strong anti-slip grip, helping you avoid any potential accidents while you trim your way through your garden.
The ratcheting system is amazing, especially considering their reasonable price, making it easy for people with less strength to cut through stubborn bushes and plants.
Because they are lightweight, these shears are also portable and easy to handle, so you can carry them in your pocket when you’re off to the garden. And, best of all, the company backs them up with a lifetime guarantee.
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Last update on 2020-09-28 at 04:39 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API