Investing in one of the best hedge trimmers is extremely worthwhile if you're struggling keep your garden design looking neat and tidy. These machines can help you keep your shrubs in check, and enable you to trim and shape your hedges and plants with pinpoint precision.
If this is your first point of call on your journey towards topiary perfection, and you're unsure of what to look for, then consider this: hedge trimmers need to be easy to operate and comfortable to use. Factors such as blade size and power type (cordless or corded) are also important depending on the size of your hedges.
When it comes to finding the best hedge trimmer for your needs, use this guide to the best tools available to buy now.
The Best Hedge Trimmers
1. Bosch AHS 55-20 LI
The best hedge trimmer for ease of use
Power: 18V | Type: Cordless | Blade length: 55cm | Weight: 2.6kg
The Bosch AHS 55-20 LI is a superb machine which is easy to use and comfortable to grip. It has a multi-position front handle which makes it convenient to work in a variety of positions, and it's even won an AGR certificate for its superior back friendliness.
It's best used for trimming medium-sized hedges, utilising Bosch's Quick Cut Technology for a clean cutting performance, and its 55cm blade (the longest on this list) has 20mm tooth space which is great for clean, precise cutting of branches.
Plus, it has a fast cutting stroke of 1,500 strokes per minute, which will noticeably speed up your cutting jobs. It also comes with a tip protector to help you avoid damaging the blade when cutting along walls and paths.
You can buy the trimmer with the 2.5Ah battery and charger included, (the battery lasts roughly two hours without needing a charge), or you can buy just the bare model below. The rechargeable battery is also compatible with other 18V Power4All lithium-ion cordless products.
2. Cobra LRH50-24V
The best machine for taller tasks
Power: 24V | Type: Cordless | Blade length: 50cm | Weight: 3.7kg
If you're looking to tackle taller tasks without the need for step ladders, then the LRH5024v from Cobra is a must-have.
This long reach trimmer has a telescopic shaft which extends to 2.5 metres, providing ample reach for trimming small trees, and it features an articulating head which flips between 0-90° - this is great for chopping the tops off tall hedges.
Its powerful 24V battery is notable too, and because it's cordless it's naturally easy to manoeuvre. The 2Ah battery pack and charger are included too - the battery lasts around an hour when used continuously.
3. Flymo Easicut 460
The best hedge trimmer if you're on a budget
Power: 450W | Type: Corded | Blade length: 45cm | Weight: 3.1kg (with battery)
Flymo's corded Easicut 460 offers good value for money and is designed for easy, effective spruce ups of smaller hedges.
Its standout feature is the dual action blade, which not only speeds up your task of choice but helps to ensure a neater finish. The central handle is a good design choice too, which ensures it’s comfortable to use.
While you lose some of the ease of movement with corded models, this trimmer comes with a generous 10m power cord which offers plenty of length, and weighing just 3.1kg it's very easy to handle.
Plus, it has a long blade length and powerful motor, meaning you can handily tackle ornamental trees and shrubs.
4. Ryobi OHT1845 ONE+
Great for shaping and sculpting
Power: 18V | Type: Cordless | Blade length: 45cm | Weight: 3.4kg (with battery)
Ryobi's OHT1845 18V ONE+ is one of the best hedge trimmers if you're looking to shape or sculpt your hedges and shrubs. This is because it features a wraparound front handle which provides increased user comfort and manoeuvrability, making it easy to use over long periods of time.
It's compact and lightweight too, which is useful for less-able gardeners or those buying a hedge trimmer for the first time, and it delivers a surprisingly powerful performance. The 45cm diamond-ground blade will cleanly cut stems up to 18mm.
It's a high quality tool, overall. It also includes a blade sheath for protection when not in use, and the blade guard is reassuringly sturdy. And it comes with a three-year warranty.
You'll need to buy the battery and charger separately, or you can use the battery and charger from any Ryobi ONE+ system tools you may already own.
5. Bosch EasyHedgeCut 18-45
The best hedge trimmer for beginners
Power: 18V | Type: Cordless | Blade length: 45cm | Weight: 2.3kg
This trimmer is for you if you're a garden tools novice more familiar with using handheld shears, or if you're looking for a trimmer that nails the basics.
Bosch's EasyHedgeCut 18-45 is designed for optimal balance, so it's easy on your arms and back, and Bosch's anti-blocking system for continuous use means you'll be able to cut through thicker branches without stalling.
It's a joy to use, and the 15mm tooth openings make it very effective on small-to-medium sized gardens.
6. Stihl HSA56
Offers long-term reliability
Power: 36V | Type: Cordless | Blade length: 45cm | Weight: 3.7kg
The Stihl HSA56 is a premium cordless trimmer that is well-suited for tackling hedges and shrubs in larger gardens. This is primarily due to the wide 30mm tooth spacing on the blade, which can cope with mature, woody growth.
It may be expensive, but the quality is undeniable. It's lightweight, efficient, quiet, and comes with a two-year warranty for peace of mind. Plus the blade has a tip protector to prevent it getting damaged on nearby fences or walls.
It comes with Stihl's AK10 battery, which runs around 40 minutes. But you can alternatively use Stihl's AK20 (80 mins' run time) or AK30 (120 mins) batteries.
How to Buy the Best Hedge Trimmer
If you’re not sure which is the best hedge trimmer for your garden, use this handy guide below to help you get started.
Cordless vs corded
Cordless hedge trimmers are generally more manoeuvrable as they're not restricted by how near your nearest power socket is, plus you don't have to worry about slicing through the cable. They're better suited for those with a larger garden because you don't need to worry about extension leads when you're trimming hedges at the back of your garden.
Corded hedge trimmers, meanwhile, aren't affected by battery run times, and are good options for those with smaller gardens and hedges. They also tend to be very reliable in terms of power.
The running time of cordless trimmers can vary, and knowing your hedge trimmer's battery life can help ensure you get your job done in one go. Plus, look out for whether the battery and charger are included with your hedge trimmer or whether you'll need to buy them separately.
Blade size is an important consideration so you know whether your hedge trimmer can tackle your plants. The longer the blade, the more hedge you can cut at once, making it quicker and neater. Blades under 50cm should be suitable for small hedges, but it's best to go longer than this for larger hedges.
Long reach hedge trimmers like the Cobra LRH50-24V let you trim high hedges with ease. Some models also a pivoting head so you can trim across the top of hedges.
More Best Buys for Regular Gardening Jobs
Jack is News Editor of Homebuilding & Renovating and strives to break the most relevant and beneficial stories for self builders and renovators. Having bought his first home in 2013, he and his wife have renovated almost every room and recently finished a garden renovation. Jack reports on all of the latest news that could affect your project.
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