What are the Best Pruners

Personal Experience

As the first installment in my low maintenance gardening series, I want to touch on pruners.

In my original post, I described the importance of buying quality tools.  For the longest time, I would buy Fiskars brand from Home Depot.  

The blades became dull in a matter of weeks.  The cut wasn’t clean, and they mangled branches. 

I was wasting time and money.  Occasionally I would sharpen the blade, but the soft metal never seemed to hold an edge. 

After 4 years of this nonsense, I finally pulled the trigger on the $70 Stihl PP 80.  Nearly a year later they are still sharp and cut like brand new. 


I’m not saying that everyone needs to invest that much for their tools.  But I do encourage everyone to spend a little bit more on quality tools with great reviews. 

If you are paying $15 or less for your pruners, you should probably upgrade. 

Some decent pruners that I have had in the past include:

Corona – This is my favorite budget pruner.  They are super durable.  I like to buy these for my laborers since they are fairly inexpensive, but still cut great, and stay shard for a month or two.  They do cause blisters though since there is not a lot of padding on the handles.

Leonard – A step up from the pruner listed above,  this guy remained fairly sharp over a few months of use.  They also sell replacement blades for this pruner.  One thing that I did not like, is that the handles are quite large and wide when fully opened.

Felco Model 2 – This pruner is pretty awesome.  It offers some cool features and many replacement parts.  The cutting blade is hard and maintains its edge.  If you do not want to spend $70 but still want quality, these pruners are perfect.

Stihl PP 80 – This is my all time favorite pruner.  More on the expensive side, but well worth the money.  These pruners fit perfect in your hand.  They cause very little fatigue and strain.  Additionally, they have the hardest cutting blade that I have come across.  I haven’t even had to sharpen mine, and it’s been nearly a season! 


There are a few other recommendations that I would like to make. 

An accessory that I highly recommend is a pruner sheath.  I like the kind that clips onto your belt the best.  If you are anything like me, you probably lose your pruners in the garden daily.  Stop wasting time and buy a $15 pruner sheath. You will always know where your pruners are (on your hip).  The sheath provides easy and convenient access. 

Tool oil is a must!  Oil is very cheap and can be found on Amazon.  I use oil to wash my pruners at the end of each day. Oil prevents rust, cleans sap and resin, and ensures smooth cutting. 


Assess your gardening needs. Decide which pruner is right for you.  If you have only a few plants to be pruned, invest in one of the more economical options.  If you think you will be doing a lot of pruning, I recommend making a larger investment. 

I know that spending $70 on pruners, $15 in a sheath, and $10 on oil hurts.  I’ve done it.  But I have not regretted the purchase at all and I can better serve my customers with the right tools!