Different Types of Pruning Shears

So you're looking for the best pruning shears for your yard? We hear you! All gardeners know that when working outside, the right tools are a must. Today we'll be telling you all about the different types of pruning shears, an elemental tool of every gardener new or experienced. If you plan to get rid of excess growth or keep your plants trimmed to an appropriate size, then it is necessary to have the best pruning shears. Gardening needs commitments and having the right tools will make all the hard work worthwhile and far more enjoyable. Now that you know how important pruning shears are, getting to know the different types of pruning shears is a great place to start. Though it may be a little confusing knowing which one to get, choosing the right tool doesn't have to be a complicated matter. Continue reading and find the pruning shears that belong with you.

Different Types of Pruning Shears FAQ's

What are the different types of pruning shears?

There are basically three types of hand pruners: bypass, anvil, and ratchet.

Bypass garden pruners

This tool makes a nice clean cut using two curved blades that bypass each other in the same manner as scissor blades. Being the most popular, it cuts as it slides tightly across a thicker unsharpened blade.

Anvil garden pruners

These present a single straight cutting blade that closes down on a flat edge or anvil. Anvil pruners have a slicing action similar to a knife against a cutting board. These are usually used for removing brittle deadwood.

Ratchet garden pruners

These are basically anvil pruners with a mechanism that performs the cutting action in stages. If you are doing a great deal of pruning, ratchet pruners might save your hand and wrist some strain and fatigue.

What are the most popular brands of pruning shears?

This is largely a subjective question, but Corona, Fiskar, and Felco are going to be the three brands you’re most likely to encounter at most hardware stores.

Things to consider when choosing a pair of pruning shears?

Operating style

The operating style will depend on the type of pruning shears you choose. Each type has its fans, but because of the cuts' closeness and cleanness, a bypass hand pruner is normally the best choice for most home gardeners. Others have a special notch in the cutting blade for trimming wires and plant ties. Experienced gardeners often choose to own more than one pair of hand pruners.


Pruners can be found in a wide range of prices. The best pruners will come in a range of sizes. For an expensive set of pruners, it is also worth it to get a leather holster. You also want to check for styles made from high-tempered carbon steel, which can be repeatedly sharpened.


Pruning can tire the hardiest hands; look into ergonomically designed models. There are cushioned handles to reduce pressure, rotating handles to lessen wear on your wrist, even models with a horizontal inclination to allow the hand to remain in an unbent, neutral position.

When should you use your pruning shears?

  • Prune shrubs that flower in the springtime after the blooms fade. For example, azaleas should be pruned after they bloom before they set the growth for the next year.
  • Prune shrubs that flower in the summer before they bloom in the spring.
  • Prune roses after the last frost in spring.
  • Tender, flowering annuals can be pruned mid-season to get the most out of your plants. For example, cut back begonias and coleus when they get leggy in mid-summer, and the plants will grow back bushy and full.
  • Perennials benefit from pruning after the flowers fade. Give them trim with pruning snips, keep them watered and fertilized, and you may get a second flush of blooms in late summer and early fall.

Tips for pruning:

  • Remove diseased stems back to where the healthy wood starts.
  • Disinfect the blade between cuts utilizing bleach and water or alcohol wipes. This extra step will keep the plants in your garden healthy.
  • When cutting shrubs or trees, please direct your attention to dead branches at the base, and remove them.
  • Cut just above the leaf bud on the outside of shrub branches.
  • Get rid of branches growing at narrow angles to main, vertical branches.

Pruning shears maintenance

To get the most out of your pruning shears, there are two basic rules you need to follow to keep it in optimum conditions:

  1. Always use the right tool for the job. Delicate pruning snips are not meant for pruning shrubs, just like you wouldn’t use your everyday bypass pruners to take off tree branches.
  2. Keep your tools clean. You can rinse them with water, scrubbing if necessary, then dry with a soft cloth.

Types of Pruning Shears

Fiskars PowerGear2 Steel Pruner

Patented design with modified gears and cam mechanism optimizes your cutting power through the middle of the branch, the toughest part of the cut. A fully hardened bypass-style steel blade includes a low-friction coating for smooth cutting, less gumming, and rust resistance. A contoured, rolling handle fits your hand's shape and natural motion for comfortable use and reduced hand fatigue.

Different types of pruning shears: Fiskars PowerGear2 Pruner, Steel


  • Advanced Mechanics
  • Advanced Blade Design
  • Advanced Comfort and Control
  • Patented Gear Technology

Sun Joe Rapid Cutting Cordless Rechargeable Power Pruner

Prune your way to a greener yard and garden with Sun Joe PJ3600C 3.6-Volt Cordless Pruner. Proper pruning encourages plants to thrive and is key to maintaining healthy flowering plants and fruit trees. Ideal for greenwood, woody stems, twigs, and branches up to 1/2-inch, Sun Joe’s cordless pruner provides a clean, precise cut to allow your plant to heal while eliminating the stress and strain.

Different types of pruning shears: Sun Joe Rapid Cutting Cordless Rechargeable Power Pruner


  • 3.6-volt, 2000 mAh cordless rechargeable power pruner
  • Easily trim green wood, branches, twigs, and stems to help plants thrive
  • Trims branches up to 0.5 inches thick in less than 0.6 seconds
  • Safety features include dual onboard LED lights, and a safety switch to prevent accidental cuts

Felco Classic Manual Hand Pruner

The premium pruning clippers are constructed of forged aluminum handles and hardened steel blades. All pruner components can be replaced in this dependable model. Hardened steel blade and screw-mounted anvil blade ensure reliably clean, precise cuts. A narrow-pointed anvil blade allows easy access to twiggy branches and assures a close cut to the trunk.

Different types of pruning shears: Felco Classic Manual Hand Pruner


  • Anvil blade with a sap groove
  • A hardened bolt and nut to assure exact adjustment
  • A rubber cushion and shock absorber
  • Strong blades with a wire-cutting notch
  • Lightweight metal handles

Corona Hand Ratchet Pruner

The Corona Clipper 3/4-inch ratchet action pruner features a 3/4-inch cutting capacity and a power-multiplying ratchet action for easy cutting. Its versatile design is suitable for right and left-handed use, and the non-stick-coated blade makes for smooth cutting and easy cleaning all season long.

Different types of pruning shears: Corona Hand Ratchet Pruner


  • Rachet Pruner
  • Allows you to stop mid-cut, open back up for more leverage, and continue cutting
  • Coated Non-Stick Blade
  • Suitable for right and left-hand use
  • 3/4 Inch Cut Capacity: best suited for medium and small-sized hands

TABOR TOOLS Straight Pruning Shears with Stainless Steel Blades

With these shears, you will reach stems inside bundles, making picking and trimming a fun and easy task! Ideal for deadheading, trimming, shaping, and other quick snips on small plants. Suitable for hydroponics and indoor herb growing.

Different types of pruning shears: TABOR TOOLS Straight Pruning Shears with Stainless Steel Blades


  • Stainless-steel design blades
  • Open-Close clip
  • Shock absorbing spring
  • Strong and durable
  • Adjustable stainless steel blades
  • Coated handles

Fiskars Pruning Softouch Micro-Tip Snip

Spring-action design gently opens blades after each cut to help reduce hand fatigue. Ideal for deadheading, trimming, shaping, and other quick snips on small plants.

Different types of pruning shears: Fiskars Pruning Softouch Micro-Tip Snip


  • Easy Action Design
  • Micro-Tip Blades
  • Softgrip Touchpoints

Hydrofarm Precision Curved Blade Pruners

These are a favorite of horticulturists, from weekend gardeners to professional growers and flower trimmers. They feature razor-sharp stainless steel blades, perfectly balanced construction, and a lightweight, ergonomic design.

Different types of pruning shears: Hydrofarm Precision Curved Blade Pruners


  • Curved blade tips for ultimate cutting precision
  • Right or left-handed use
  • Surgical stainless steel
  • Ergonomic design
  • High quality