Keep Your Hedges Under Control with These Hedge Trimmers

One of the first things Tom and I agreed on when we finally decided the time has come to leave the crowded and busy streets of our hometown and move somewhere a bit more “in the country”, was that our future garden needed to be magnificent.

We wanted plenty of greenery, a vegetable patch, flowers and fruit trees, a space to maybe one day build a pool (if summers in the UK keep becoming ever more sunny and hot) and space for a sun deck.

At one point while we were looking at houses, we were even ready to settle for a smaller one, just because the garden it came with was breathtaking.

(This is probably the point where I should say that neither Tom nor I knew anything about gardening, growing fruit or veg, or pruning and trimming and weeding.)

But, you live and you learn, and we really did want to be that stereotypical old age pensioner duo that goes on and on about their garden.

Today, as I look out across our front lawn in Midsomer Magna, I know we have made the right decision in going for a smaller garden instead of the acres and acres we originally wanted.

Because for starters, I still don’t know how to use a bloody hedge trimmer.

Which finally brings us to the topic of this post: hedge trimmers to buy in the UK.

How to Choose a Hedge Trimmer

Let us first go over some hedge trimmer basics, shall we?

There are two main options you can go for: with cord or without cord. I would suggest going for a cordless hedge trimmer, as it will be more manageable. You won’t have to drag an extension cord around the garden (and risk tangling yourself in it with a working hedge trimmer in your arms).

As for some of the other features to keep an eye on, I’d suggest the following:

Size: hedge trimmers can be small or large, and there are some that I would classify as somewhere in the middle. Smaller hedge trimmers are usually less powerful and only able to cut thin and small branches. They are also lighter and easier to use though. Larger models are heavier and more expensive, but they are much better equipped for any heavy-duty hedges, so depending on what you intend to do with yours (and how strong and capable you are), choose a smaller or a slightly larger model.

Battery life: larger batteries will enable you to trim hedges for longer periods of time in one go. On the other hand, they will also demand a longer charging time, so weigh these two factors carefully. Larger batteries tend to be heavier too.

Weight: if you need to lift the hedge trimmer high above your head, you definitely want something lighter, especially since you want to avoid any possible injury. On the other hand, lighter models are not as powerful, so it will be a very user-specific trade-off. Before you buy one, I suggest lugging its equivalent in weight around the garden, just to make sure you can handle it (it will also likely be a nice workout).

Noise: depending on where you live, you might want to carefully consider the noise levels your hedge trimmer will produce. Smaller and lighter models tend to be less loud, but as you already know, not as powerful.

Safety features: needless to say, any kind of automatic saw terrifies me to death. Which is why safety features in a hedge trimmer would be my main focus. Some of the things to look for are automatic breaks (meaning the blades will stop when you hit the off button), dual switches (meaning you need two hands to turn the hedge trimmer on, and you can’t accidentally power it up when not ready) and hand guards.

Now that we have all of that down (and since I do hope you know a bit more about this intricate apparatus than I do), here is my rundown of the top hedge trimmers to look for in the UK.

(Bear in mind that they were all selected by Tom and our gardener (yes, we do have a gardener who does all the heavy maintenance – we just potter around in the vegetable patches, water the flowers and come up with wild new ideas for next year’s plants) – I am just the messenger.)

1 – Husqvarna 122HD60 21.7 Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: No
  • Power: 600 watts
  • Weight: 6.5 kilograms
  • Length of blade: 59 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 28 milometers 
  • Battery included: No 

To start this list off, here is the hedge trimmer we actually own.

It has a brushless motor and is powerful, efficient and fast. It is also rather compact, so you won’t feel dragged down by its weight either, although it is definitely not light. It comes with an anti-vibration system that won’t tire out your arms too soon, so you can use it for longer periods of time.

The handle rotates which makes it easy to get that awkward angle and to trim even the most pesky branches, especially those that grow at higher levels where you need to raise the hedge trimmer above your head.

It comes with a blade guard made of rigid and strong plastic, making it rather safe and sturdy.

What I like about it is that it’s not too loud – it’s not exactly silent, but we’ve never had a complaint from the neighbours, so I do feel it’s not as disruptive to your fellow humans.

I would recommend this hedge trimmer if you are not tackling insane bushes and shrubs – the power and weight are both quite adequate for your regular, garden variety garden work (see what I did there?).

Pros
  • Powerful enough for everyday hedge trimming and a bit more
  • Not too loud
Cons
  • Heavy

2 – Flymo SabreCut XT Corded Telescopic Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: Yes
  • Power: 500 watts
  • Weight: 4 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 48 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 25 millimetres 

If you are looking to trim taller hedges, this telescopic hedge trimmer might be a great choice. Its handle extends up to 3 metres, which means you can reach around 9 metres in height with both of your own feet planted firmly on the ground.

The tilting blade is adjustable up to 90 degrees to the shaft and it has 15 different positions – in other words, you can also cut the tops of tall hedges from the ground (depending on their height, and your height).

It can be corded or cordless, so if you don’t want to worry about tripping over a tiresome snaky bit, go for the cordless option.

It comes with twin action diamond-ground blades, 42 centimetres long and with a 16 millimetre cutting capacity – ideal for light and medium hedges. If you are working with something very thick and sturdy, this might not be the hedge trimmer for you though.

You can also use this guy to trim growth on the ground, making it easier on your back, as you won’t have to be bending all the time.

A great option if you are looking for a telescopic hedge trimmer for some lighter trimming.

Pros
  • Light and easy to use
  • Multifunctional: can be used as a hedge and grass trimmer
Cons
  • You might be bothered by the cord

3 – DEWALT DCM563PB-GB 18 V XR Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: No
  • Power: 18 volts 
  • Weight: 2 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 55 centimetres
  • Blade gap: 19 millimetres
  • Battery included: No 

This Dewalt hedge trimmer is a great option if you are looking for a model you can use for extended periods of time. It is sort of on the lighter side (at 2 kilograms) and its design features a wrap-around auxiliary handle which means it is comfortable to use and it won’t hinder your cutting results.

The blades are 55 centimetres long and have a 19 millimetre cutting gap. They are laser cut and precise, and can make working on those medium and large hedges a piece of cake. They are also perfectly balanced with the handle, so you won’t have a difficult time manoeuvring this hedge trimmer.

The one downside of this model is that you need to purchase the actual tool and the battery separately. However, with a 5.0Ah battery you can get up to 75 minutes of use out of this model, which should be plenty of time to spruce up your garden.

Overall a safe and efficient model that can help you tackle sturdier bushes and hedges that does not come in either too heavy or too cumbersome.

Pros
  • Light and easy to use
  • Safe and fits nicely in your hands
Cons
  • Does not include a battery

4 – Gtech HT30 Cordless Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: No 
  • Power: 18 volts 
  • Weight: 2.4 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 315 millimetres 
  • Blade gap: 15 millimetres 
  • Battery included: Yes 

Another extendable hedge trimmer model here, with a total reach of 3 metres. It has a 90 centimetre extension arm, and it is also semi-lightweight, coming in at just under 2.5 kilograms.

However, the extension arm cannot be removed, which would have made trimming at waist level a bit more straightforward. You can work through 135 degrees though, as you can angle the head differently, so you should still be able to tackle lower-level trimming as well.

While this hedge trimmer is a bit top heavy, its blade is strong enough to cut through branches that are as much as 6 centimetres in diameter, which is much more than we can say for most other domestic-use models. In other words – whatever you have to throw at this one, it will likely come out on top.

The battery should last you around an hour, but it will take up to four to charge, so bear that in mind when planning a trimming session.

All in all, another cordless model that is definitely worth your attention.

Pros
  • Long extension arm
  • Light and easy to use
Cons
  • The extension arm can’t be removed

5 – Bosch AHS 45-16 Electric Hedge Cutter

  • Cord: No
  • Power: 18 volts
  • Weight: 2.5 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 45 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 20 millimetres
  • Battery included: No

Now here is a brand I know you have heard of, with this reliable and powerful hedge trimmer model. While this is one of their more basic models, it gets the job done well, does not have too many bells and whistles, and will be your trusted gardening ally.

It has a tooth gap of 20 millimetres, so not for your tougher jobs, but great for everyday use. It’s powered by 18 volts, so again, not over the top, but plenty for regular at-home use.

It comes with a built-in anti-block technology and some very carefully designed front teeth, providing for smooth and continuous trimming. However, since it is a bit heavier (at 3 kilograms), you might want to consider something lighter.

On the other hand, you might find 3 kilograms light and easy to use, who am I to tell.

You will need to buy a battery for this hedge trimmer separately – but it’s compatible with all other Bosch batteries used in their power tools, so that shouldn’t be a problem, especially if you already have one in the home.

Pros
  • Great for regular hedge trimming
  • Built-in anti-block technology
Cons
  • Battery sold separately

6 – STIHL Hedge Trimmer HSA 56

  • Cord: No
  • Power: 36 volts 
  • Weight: 4 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 45 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 26.5 millimetres 
  • Battery included: No 

Here is another even heavier model, coming in at 3.7 kilograms – so again, if you don’t want to be bothered by a slightly heavier hedge trimmer, maybe skip this one.

This one also comes with a slightly smaller blade but with plenty of battery life – the AK10 provides 40 minutes of power, the AK20 comes with 80, and the AK30 with 120.

If you are looking for a reliable and safe hedge trimmer and as little noise as possible, this one should be able to cover all of your bases. Not built for major gardening projects, but ideal for trimming those pesky shrubs.

Bear in mind that STIHL is a very renowned model in the gardening tools arena, so if you are looking for that kind of big brand quality guarantee, this model fits the bill.

Pros
  • Popular brand
  • Safe and reliable
Cons
  • Battery not included

7 – Ryobi OHT1855R ONE+ Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: No
  • Power: 18 volts 
  • Weight: 2.8 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 55 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 22 millimetres 
  • Battery included: No 

This hedge trimmer model combines power (at 18 volts) and a large tooth gap (at 22 millimetres), which should be more than enough for most of your regular gardening work. Unless of course you are working with some serious hedges, in which case you will need a pro tool.

The handle on this one is comfy and it comes with a hand guard that can be rotated, meaning you can easily access those more difficult areas and aim your blade carefully. It will provide better control over your edges and corners as well.

It comes with an anti-jamming system and an attachment that helps clear debris off the hedges you have just trimmed, so it truly is a neat little tool for a neat little garden.

The battery is not included, so you should consider that purchase as well when considering this model.

Overall, a good and efficient tool, a little on the heavy side.

Pros
  • Great control
  • Anti-jamming tech
Cons
  • Battery not included

8 – VONHAUS 550W Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: Yes
  • Power: 450 watts 
  • Weight: 2.6 kilometres 
  • Length of blade: 41 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 16 millimetres 

Another slick and smooth hedge trimmer is this Vonhaus model. This one is 3.5 kilograms heavy, and it does come with a cord, so bear that in mind if you are looking to take it out to the very end of your very large garden.

However, it is a rather affordable option, so if you just want to do a bit of trimming right outside the house or in areas where the extension cord can safely reach, are not looking for a tool that will last you decades but want to take care of a current problem without throwing too much money at the it –this is your solution.

The cutting blade of this model is 41 centimetres long which should have you covered. And since it has a 450 watt motor – it is a bit loud. It does come with a two-stage safety and has a hand protector, so you are sure to remain safe while doing your trimming.

Not the best of the bunch, but not to be underestimated either.

Pros
  • Affordable model
  • Safe and easy to use
Cons
  • You may not like the cord
  • A bit on the loud side

9 – BLACK & DECKER GTC36552PC Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: No 
  • Power: 36 volts 
  • Weight: 3.1 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 55 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 22 millimetres 
  • Battery included: Yes

To this day, when I think of power tools, the first brand that comes to mind is Black & Decker. I guess we just grew up with it being popular.

This is an all-round hedge trimmer that can take care of practically any task you throw at it. It’s heavy at 3.1 kilograms, but it is cordless so you can take it anywhere, the blade is 55 centimetres long and is dual action (meaning there are teeth on both sides), so you can reach whatever you need, and it is powerful enough to take care of both thick and thin branches.

The gap between blades is 22 millimetres, so you really are fully equipped to do your gardening with ease. The battery will last you around 50 minutes of cutting time, so you should be able to get away with one or two charges.

A reliable, sturdy and powerful hedge trimmer from a major household name – what more could you want?

Pros
  • Popular brand
  • Dual action blade
Cons
  • None that I can think of

10 – Greenworks Tools G40HT Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: No 
  • Power: 40 volts 
  • Weight: 2.8 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 61 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 27 millimetres 
  • Battery included: No 

If you are looking for what I would call “a safe option” – meaning that it’s not the most brilliant tool out there, but that it combines your basic needs at a reasonable price, I’d check this model out.

This is a hedge trimmer that has some okay battery life (around an hour and twenty with a 4Ah battery – note that you can also buy a 2Ah one) and performs reasonably well. You can cut anything up to 1 centimetre thick with it easily. As for something thicker, it will still be able to perform, but much more painstakingly.

It comes with two safety devices and has a good grip, so don’t worry if this is your first hedge trimmer purchase. You can also rotate the handle making it easier to reach some of those less accessible spots.

In short – reliable and easy to use, safe and not too pricey, but it won’t wow you either.

Pros
  • Affordable and easy to use
Cons
  • Nothing particularly wow about it

11 – AL-KO HT 2050 Hedge Trimmer

  • Cord: No 
  • Power: 20 volts 
  • Weight: 2.7 kilograms 
  • Length of blade: 51 centimetres 
  • Blade gap: 15 millimetres 
  • Battery included: Yes 

Finally, if you are in the market for something light and easy to work with, here is this hedge trimmer that is great for shaping your hedges and shrubs.

It appears deceptively simple, but it does in fact pack a might punch – it won’t be able to deal with the biggest branches though and will simply get stuck. Think of it as a hedge trimmer for maintaining your neat trim, rather than as a heavy duty tool that will take on the worst of your garden.

This one also comes with a very interesting addition in the form of a spirit level. However, I’m not actually sure how you are going to keep one eye on the hedge and your blade, and the other on the actual spirit level – but maybe you are just better at this kind of stuff than I am.

This is again a very safe tool, it has a hand guard made of hard plastic and its balance is great so you won’t have to worry about accidents due to weight or imbalance.

The one flaw I need to point out is that it does not have a battery indicator – so you might find yourself out of power at the worst possible moment. However, other than that, this is a neat and efficient model you should definitely check out.

Pros
  • More powerful than it appears
  • Safe and reliable
Cons
  • No battery life indicator

12 – Bosch ASB 10.8 LI Shrub Shearer

  • Cord: No 
  • Power: 10.8 volts 
  • Weight: 900 grams 
  • Length of blade: 20, 12 and 10 centimetres 
  • Battery included: Yes 

And last but not least, here is this tiny and neat little tool that is technically not a hedge trimmer – it is called I believe a shrub shearer, but I’ve decided to include it here because it’s small and could come in very useful.

This is a handheld model that you use with just the one hand, and it comes with a 10 centimetre grass blade, a 12 centimetre shrub blade and a 20 centimetre shrub blade, all of which are very easy to switch around.

It is very, very light (900 grams in total), so you will definitely be able to use it easily and won’t get as tired. Depending on the kind of trimming and shearing you are looking to get done, this might be the perfect tool, or it might be the complete opposite of what you are looking for.

I honestly think this would be a great grandma gift – however, I am in the middle of reading a collection of Miss Marple stories, so I might just be fixating on the fact that Victorian old ladies used to garden a lot.

Pros
  • Easy to use
  • Very light
Cons
  • None I can think of – if this is the kind of tool you need

Which Hedge Trimmer Should I Buy?

Now that is the question, isn’t it?

However, like I keep telling you (and I can imagine just how annoying that sounds) – I really am no true gardener, and my knowledge of hedge trimmers is very limited.

I would have to say – check out the ones I have listed and see what your particular needs are. Only then can you decide which one would best fit them.

If you are, like me, a complete noob when it comes to hedge trimmers – I say buy any one of these, as they have all been vetted by a couple of more experienced hedge trimming experts (I use the word expert lightly here, since Tom certainly is not one).

J.

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