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Trimming hedges when you can't bend easily

Trimming is the job of cutting your hedge regularly to encourage strong growth for a full, dense, hedge. Trimming maintains shape and keeps the hedge at a manageable height and width.

Top tips to make trimming hedges easier 

  • Trimming hedges
    Avoid very fast-growing species and keep the hedge to a height that is easy for you to reach. Also, keep the hedge narrow to avoid reaching across and straining.
  • You may find trimming the lower areas of a hedge easier from a kneeling position.
  • Keep shears and other cutting tools sharp, clean, well oiled and adjusted. Don’t try to cut material that is too thick with shears – carry secateurs to cut through any thicker stems and use long reach secateurs if needed. 
  • If you find cutting the hedge difficult, an alternative such as a wall or fence - with climbing plants - can be wildlife-friendly, attractive options.
  • Depending on the size of your hedge, this is a job that you might decide to get regular help with.

Taking care 

  • Always ‘warm up’ with a few gentle stretches before starting work, keep your back straight and only work for short periods, to avoid strain. Only cut where you can reach
    comfortably, tackle a bit at a time and take rests.
  • Conventional hedging shears can often cause neck, back and arm problems. Try to work with the shears as close to your body as possible and hold them just below chest height.
  • If you are sitting or kneeling to trim
  • Wear suitable shoes and clothing to protect your feet and legs. Safety glasses are necessary when using powered trimmers.


Equipment and tools

  • Telescopic loppers
    A half-size pair of hedge shears is lighter than conventional shears and will take less effort to use. 
  • Super sharp shears, with shorter blades and long handles, are lighter, and suitable for more delicate trimming, such as topiary, or you can use one-handed shears.
  • A lightweight telescopic hedge shear helps you to reach further.
  • Battery powered shears are ideal for trimming soft foliage and for light hedge trimming.
  • A long-reach battery powered trimmer can be useful if you have good balance and upper body strength.


Lightweight telescopic hedge shears  

Lightweight telescopic hedge shears

Easy-to-use catches on the handles allow you to adjust the handle length, and each handle can be set to meet your needs.

Find out more about Lightweight telescopic hedge shears


Lighter telescopic battery powered hedge trimmer  

Lighter telescopic battery powered hedge trimmer

Ideal for small to medium size hedges, this model has a telescopic handle for trimming higher up or when you garden sitting down.

Find out more about Lighter telescopic battery powered hedge trimmer


Super sharp shears  

Super sharp shears

For use with two hands, these light shears have short blades and long handles. Good for trimming topiary and small hedges.

Find out more about Super sharp shears


Telescopic battery powered hedge trimmer  

Telescopic battery powered hedge trimmer

This slightly larger tool is not so light and easy to handle but cuts branches up to 14mm in diameter

Find out more about Telescopic battery powered hedge trimmer