Removing briars, chopping your way through overgrown shrubs and cutting off wayward branches are all a part of keeping your garden looking in pristine condition all year round, and when you factor in deadheading and cutting back old growth, it can all seem a little overwhelming.
However, it’s not all in vain. Of course, keeping everything trimmed and looking good won’t only add to the aesthetic appearance of your garden, but it will also ensure that your plants are kept happy and healthy, and they’ll reward you for it with a glorious display of flowers and foliage for years to come.
If your garden is looking a little overgrown, then a pair of garden secateurs is the best tool to help you neaten things up and give your plants a little bit of tender loving care.
But with so many options available to us, and with varying styles of secateurs, finding the correct pair for your gardening needs can be a bit confusing.
To help make things a little clearer, we’ve put together a list of five of the best garden secateurs available, along with a handy buying guide that will help you find the perfect pair of secateurs for your garden the first time around.
So sit back, keep reading and pretty soon you’ll be the proud owner of an amazing pair of garden secateurs that will help you keep your garden in tip top condition!
If you’re in a hurry and are looking for pair of garden secateurs that will help you keep your garden looking amazing, and ensure your plants grow as healthily as possible, check out our top pick below.
In a hurry? This is our winner!
Best Garden Secateurs – Comparison Table
Best Garden Secateurs – Reviews
Best Garden Secateurs – Buyer’s Guide
If you want to keep your garden looking neat and tidy all year round, as well as making sure that your plants are as healthy as possible, then a decent pair of secateurs as what you need to get the job done!
However, before settling on your final decision, there are a few things you need to give some thought to. We’ve outlined some key points below, that will help you find the perfect pair of garden secateurs for your needs the first time around.
Secateurs come in two different designs – anvil and bypass. Each of these is designed to do something different, so the first thing you need to do is think about the job you are trying to achieve in your garden, and what it is that you’re pruning.
Anvil secateurs have a more rounded looking blade, and these are designed to cut through thicker stems and hardwood, leaving you with a clean cut on each stem. This style of secateurs is not suitable if you’re cutting through thinner stems or new growth, as they will crush the soft stems rather than cleanly slice through them.
If you’re looking to cut back new growth for plant maintenance or for taking cuttings, or if you’re looking for a pair that you can use for cutting flowers or snipping herbs, then a pair of bypass secateurs would be the style to go for. The super sharp, curved blades neatly are ideal for smoothly cut through softer growth without crushing, but they will struggle to cope with thick branches or stems.
The material that your secateur blades are made from is another important thing to look for. Ideally, you need them to not only be really sharp, but durable enough to tackle a variety of pruning jobs without bending or breaking.
Japanese 5K steel, stainless steel or carbon alloy steel make the perfect choices for secateur blades, as their sharp edges will ensure a clean cut is achieved each and every time.
Any blades that struggle to cut through stems and branches may snag or tear on the plant, which greatly increases the chance of disease setting into the open wound. By getting a quick, clean slice, you’re able to reduce these chances greatly.
Some secateurs have blades that have been treated with a non-stick coating, and this is a fantastic way to ensure that you get glide as smoothly as possible through each stem without worrying about the blade getting stuck and snagging the wound.
The above materials are also highly durable, which is perfect for undertaking tougher jobs, and are usually quite easy to sharpen at home. This means that you can keep your secateurs in top condition without having to take them to a specialist or purchase another pair when they start to become blunt.
Some secateurs come with the ability to switch between gears, which makes them able to handle tougher jobs when needed, and means you can apply less pressure to other stems when you need to. This is a great feature to look for if you’ve got lots of different plants to prune, and can help you achieve that clean cut with ease.
Spring loaded handles are another good thing to look for when researching the strength of your secateurs, as you’ll be able to apply a lot more pressure to thick, woody branches without worrying about it affecting the secateur’s performance.
Pruning and cutting back is a job that can leave your hands feeling sore and can even lead to wrist strain when done incorrectly, so it’s a good idea to look at the way the secateur’s handle has been designed, and at what it offers in terms of comfort.
By far, an ergonomic handle is the best feature you can look for here, as it will have been designed solely with comfort in mind. Designed to contour to the shape of your hand, an ergonomic handle will allow you to operate the secateurs with a more natural feel and reduces the risk of you holding them at an awkward angle.
Some secateurs also feature locking mechanisms that allow you to find the perfect handle expansion distance, helping you avoid overstretching and applying the pressure of your fingers equally across the tool for a more balanced feel.
A handle that features extra grip or non-slip capabilities is also another good feature to keep an eye out for, as this will reduce your chances of accidentally losing your grasp on the secateurs as you prune your way through your garden.
Gardening means being out in nature, and we all know how unpredictable the Great British weather can be. What was once a beautiful, sunny day can soon turn into a torrential downpour. But, the show must go on, regardless of the weather conditions.
So, if you find yourself caught in a sudden shower of rain when you’re pruning, you’ll want to be certain that your secateurs aren’t going to be affected by the water. With this in mind, look for a pair that have been treated with an anti-rust coating, which will allow you to carry on snipping without them getting damaged.
A pair of secateurs that have been treated with a weather resistant coating will also allow you to get back out into the garden and carry on pruning as soon as the rain stops, as they won’t be affected by wet stems or branches.
There’s nothing worse than finding the perfect pair of secateurs and then finding that you’re unable to use them because they’ve been built for right-handed only use. So, to avoid this happening, take a look to see if they offer ambidextrous properties.
A lot of secateurs have been designed to be used with either the left or right hand, and some even feature special ratchets that allow you to switch between the two, making them suitable for every gardener regardless of their dominant hand.
Secateurs are designed to last, but that doesn’t mean that things can’t go wrong sometimes. That’s why it’s always a good idea to see if they come with any guarantee that will cover you for repair or replacement if they were to stop performing as well as they could.
Many secateurs now come with guarantees of around 10 years, and some even cover you for a lifetime of use, which is a testament to how well they have been designed and constructed.
A guarantee will give you ultimate peace of mind, so it’s definitely something that we would recommend looking for before purchasing.
A decent pair of secateurs can be a pretty expensive investment, so it’s always worth setting yourself a budget before you start shopping for a pair, and try to stick to it as much as possible.
When you take the time to research the design, materials and features of a pair of secateurs, you may be surprised to find that you’re able to find a really good pair at a reasonable price. And, as always, make sure you’re paying for the quality of the product rather than just for the brand.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between anvil and bypass secateurs?
Anvil secateurs are designed to cut through tough wood and thick stems cleanly, and are ideal for tackling large shrubs, juvenile trees and overgrown roses. Bypass secateurs are designed for slicing through fresh, new growth and deadheading flowers, and will give you a clean cut each time.
What secateurs are best for pruning roses?
Depending on what you’re cutting, both anvil and bypass secateurs are a good choice when it comes to pruning roses. If you’re cutting overgrown stems and briars back to the ground or back to a bud in spring of autumn, then a pair of anvil secateurs would be best. However, for deadheading or cutting flowers, a pair of bypass secateurs will give you the clean cut you need.