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gardener pruning dry branches

Tree Trimming Safety Begins With Proper Tool Safety

Of the various tips our arborists give to clients who are into gardening and touching up their landscaping, one of the most important involves the tools you use, their condition, and how you use them. Some of the tools used by professional arborists and tree service technicians have similar versions for home gardening, and the same safety measures apply to both. With this in mind, here are a few specific tips for you to follow about tree-trimming tools.

Hand Pruners and Shears

You should only use these tools when they are fully sharpened. A dull pruner will force you to exert undue pressure and overcompensate when cutting, which increases the risk of the tool slipping out of your hands. You always want to make clean cuts with sharp blades because this is how trees heal and recover faster; if you leave tears and splinters on branches and petioles, they may invite some types of fungal disease. If your shears are equipped with safety latches or mechanisms, be sure to enable them to protect the blades so that you don’t cut yourself by accident.


A lopper is like a more sophisticated hand pruner designed to tackle thicker branches. While these tools provide more cutting power, they also require extra caution while you use them. Since loppers are similar to shears, the blade sharpening recommendations are the same. Choose a lopper that is appropriate for the branch thickness and height. These tools work better when you have both feet firmly planted on solid ground; if you can’t reach the branches, you don’t want to operate loppers while overextending or standing on your tiptoes; this can make you lose balance while trying to operate a tool that is heavier than hand pruners.

Hand Saws

When the tree canopy and its extending branches are too high for shears or loppers, you may be able to get the job done with handsaws, but now you are adding heights as an element of risk. Hand saws are great for tree trimming if you can get a comfortable height and solid footing on a ladder with someone holding it on the ground. If you need to climb a tree to use a hand saw, you need professional arborists’ services. When working with a new hand saw, be sure to test it on a fallen branch to get a good feel for it.

Hedge Trimmers

The hedge trimmers we use are far more powerful than the ones you buy at your local hardware store; nonetheless, you still need to operate them with both hands for safe control and leverage. Never go for overhead cuts; get a ladder or stool instead, and don’t forget to wear eye protection to avoid getting hit by plant debris.

When you need tree trimming and other landscaping services, please don’t hesitate to contact Heartland Tree Service of Greater Tulsa.