When you shop through links on our site, we may receive compensation. This educational content is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice or consultation.

7 Best Pruning Shears of 2024

Updated
Pruning shears that can cut, crush, trim and shape your favorite plants.

With hundreds of pruning shears available, it can be almost impossible to know where to start. What is the best option for your flowers, shrubs, hedges, and trees?

That’s where I come in. As a garden enthusiast, I have spent hours creating this list and reviewing the seven best pruning shears available. As well as applying my own experience, I also studied genuine customer reviews and expert advice.

Keep reading for a comprehensive buying guide and great product recommendations, including electric shears, shears for small hands, and more.

Our Top Picks

We independently assess, research, and evaluate all recommended products and services. If you click on the links we provide, we may receive compensation.
Image
Model
Product Comparison Table
Features

Product Image of the Vivosun Hand Pruning Shear
Safest Pruning Shears
Vivosun Hand Pruning Shear
  • Super sharp blades
  • Spring mechanism reduces hand fatigue
  • Long narrow tip for hard-to-reach places
Product Image of the Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears
Best Bypass Pruning Shears
Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears
  • Self-cleaning rust-resistant blades
  • Non-slip handle
  • Cuts up to ⅝ inches thick
Product Image of the Fiskars Micro-Tip Pruning Shears
Best for Small Hands
Fiskars Micro-Tip Pruning Shears
  • Good for clean precise cuts
  • Looped handles for all hand sizes
  • Sharp stainless steel blades
Product Image of the Swansoft Electric Pruning Shears
Best for Trees
Swansoft Electric Pruning Shears
  • Comes with two batteries for 8 hours battery life
  • Brushless motor produces less noise
  • Up to 100 cutting times per minute
Product Image of the The Gardener's Friend Ratchet Pruning Shears
Best Ratchet Pruners
The Gardener's Friend Ratchet Pruning Shears
  • Brilliant for delicate cuts up to one inch thick
  • Suitable for right & left-handed users
  • Hardened and durable carbon steel blades
Product Image of the Weichuang Professional Pruning Shears
Best Budget Pick
Weichuang Professional Pruning Shears
  • Suitable for left & right-handed users
  • Safety locking mechanism
  • Easily adjust the screw tightness
Product Image of the iGarden Combo Garden Tool Set
Best for Hedges
iGarden Combo Garden Tool Set
  • Low friction coating for easy cutting
  • Contoured & ergonomic handle
  • Handle has a small hole for hanging


The Best Pruning Shears of 2024

Take your gardening to the next level with fantastic pruning shears. To create this list, I studied dozens of pruning shears, snipping out the fluff and faff so that you don’t have to. I also investigated genuine customer reviews, expert advice, and my own experience.

Whether you need to prune hedges or stick to a tighter budget, there should be something for everyone on this list. Let’s cut to the chase.

Vivosun Hand Pruning Shear

Safest Pruning Shears

These pruning shears offer added safety features for worry-free pruning. This pair of scissors features a micro tip snip and a secure sideways lock mechanism that is easy to operate. Not only does this protect the blades when you’re not using the shears, but it also prevents damage to other objects and fingers.

These tools are designed for right-handed and left-handed users to ensure safety for all.

Besides the safety, this is great for precise cuts. You can use these in hard-to-reach places without damaging other parts of your plants.

Cleaning Tip

It’s important to clean pruning shears after each use to ensure the durability of the blades and performance of the shears.

Pros

  • Super sharp blades for trimming, shaping, and deadheading.
  • Spring mechanism reduces hand fatigue.
  • Long, narrow tip allows you to cut in hard-to-reach places.
  • Budget-friendly price, about $10 cheaper than the average cost.
  • Easy to lock in place when you’re not using it.
  • Great for right and left-handed users.

Cons

  • Locking mechanism is a bit flimsy.
  • Springs back open quickly after cutting.

Product Specs

Type Anvil
Cutting diameter Less than 1/2 inch
Safety lock Yes
Blade material Stainless steel and titanium
Warranty Not specified

Our Ratings

Blade Quality
4.5 / 5
Cutting Capacity
4 / 5
Ergonomics
5 / 5
Durability
4.5 / 5
Total Rating
4.5 / 5

User Experience

These pruning shears have been a great addition to my gardening routine. They're sharp and precise, making it easy to trim my tomato plants and thin out seedlings. The size is comfortable to hold and the curved design allows for better access in tight spaces. While they may not feel exceptionally rugged, they have proven to be a reliable and valuable tool at an affordable price.

Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears

Best Bypass Pruning Shears

Check out these brilliant bypass shears if you need to trim stems and light branches up to ⅝ inches thick in diameter.

What can you expect? The blade is made from hard, precision-ground steel, which remains sharp even if you use it frequently.

You’ll notice how easily the blade glides through plants and woods. This prevents frayed edges and a build-up of sap and debris on your blade.

If you experience any issues, these shears are covered by a lifetime warranty. So you can rest assured that the manufacturer will deal with any problems.

Pros

  • Rust-resistant blades with a self-cleaning function.
  • Non-slip handle so you can use it even in the rain.
  • Cuts through stems and branches up to ⅝ inches thick.
  • Lifetime warranty to back up the product’s durability.
  • Low-friction blade.
  • Steel blade stays sharp for a long time.

Cons

  • Some customers found that anything over ½ inch thick was too much for the shears.
  • Safety locks can come loose quite easily.

Product Specs

Type Bypass
Cutting diameter ⅝ inch thick
Safety lock Yes
Blade material Steel with a non-stick cover
Warranty Lifetime warranty

Our Ratings

Blade Quality
5 / 5
Cutting Capacity
4.5 / 5
Ergonomics
4.5 / 5
Durability
4.5 / 5
Total Rating
4.5 / 5

Personal Perspective

I'm an avid gardener and I recently tried out these Fiskars pruning shears to see if they were up to the task. At first glance, they're a decent budget option for those not wanting to splurge on high-end pruners. They've been useful for light to medium pruning jobs, and the spring-loaded mechanism and easy-lock feature are nice touches, though I worry about the plastic components wearing out over time. The shears have managed to cut through branches and stems up to 1" thick, but the cuts can sometimes be a bit ragged, possibly due to blade sharpness or technique. While the tool is easy to clean and hasn't shown any rust on the blade, the handle's square shape and thin, rubbery coating make it uncomfortable to hold for extended periods, even while wearing gloves.

Fiskars Micro-Tip Pruning Shears

Best for Small Hands

These pruning shears from Fiskars might be a great match if you have small hands. As more of a scissor shape, they are more natural and comfortable to hold.

The shears have long, evenly sharp blades for clean cuts, even in tight spaces. The stainless steel blades stay sharp even with frequent use.

Customers appreciate the large handle loops that accommodate both small and large hands, as well as gloves.

Pros

  • Good for clean, precise cuts the entire way up the blade.
  • The looped handles are comfortable and suitable for all hand sizes.
  • Stainless steel blades stay sharp throughout use.
  • Full lifetime warranty.
  • Affordable price point.
  • Great for making intricate cuts.

Cons

  • Some customers found the blades dulled quite quickly.
  • No safety lock.

Product Specs

Type Anvil
Cutting diameter Not specified
Safety lock No
Blade material Stainless steel
Warranty Lifetime warranty

Our Ratings

Blade Quality
4.5 / 5
Cutting Capacity
4 / 5
Ergonomics
5 / 5
Durability
4 / 5
Total Rating
4.25 / 5

Community Feedback

My experience with these pruning shears has been incredibly positive, as they offer a comfortable grip, a sharp stainless steel blade, and brightly colored open handles. I've found them particularly useful for trimming my indoor plants, as well as harvesting herbs and vegetables from my small garden. As a left-handed person, I appreciate that they are easy to use and cause no discomfort or issues.

Swansoft Electric Pruning Shears

Best for Trees

Cutting through tree branches with pruning shears is not the most effective. But if you need something for trees with branches up to one inch thick, these will be the best pruning shears for you.

These electric power pruning shears are easy to use; they’ll handle the hard work for you when you encounter a stubborn branch.

With over 100 cutting times per minute, it’s less stressful for you, easing hand fatigue and frustration. You get about three to four hours of battery life per charge, ensuring lots of pruning time in one go.

Pros

  • Sharp and durable steel blades.
  • Comes with two batteries, giving you up to eight hours of battery life.
  • Brushless motor produces less noise.
  • Up to 100 cutting times per minute, which takes the pressure off you.
  • Cuts branches up to one inch thick.
  • Easy to use and reduces hand fatigue.

Cons

  • Only one year warranty for such an expensive product.
  • No safety lock.
  • Difficult to remove the battery.

Product Specs

Type Power
Cutting diameter One inch
Safety lock No
Blade material Hardened SK5 steel
Warranty One year

Our Ratings

Blade Quality
4.5 / 5
Cutting Capacity
5 / 5
Ergonomics
4.5 / 5
Durability
4 / 5
Total Rating
4.5 / 5

First-Hand Impression

I recently purchased these electric pruning shears and I have to say, they've made my gardening tasks so much easier. Though it took some time to figure out the power sequence and understand the beeps for operation, once I got the hang of it, these shears proved to be a powerful and efficient tool. I was able to tackle overgrown bushes and small tree limbs, and my hands didn't feel tired or sore after extended use. Battery life is pretty impressive, but be sure to charge them regularly to avoid any issues.

The Gardener's Friend Ratchet Pruning Shears

Best Ratchet Pruners

These ratchet pruners make cutting branches and stems quick and easy. The mechanism uses leverage so you can cut more branches with less effort. This includes shrubs, trees, and flowers up to an inch thick, which is incredible for handheld manual pruning shears.

The manufacturer claims that these pruning shears are helpful for people with arthritis or weak hands. If that sounds like you, and you don’t want to fork out the cash for power pruning shears, then this might be up your street. In fact, if you’re a senior — this was designed with you in mind.

Pros

  • Brilliant for delicate cuts up to one inch thick.
  • Suitable for both right and left-handed users.
  • Hardened carbon steel blades for durability and sharpness.
  • Lightweight aluminum body that’s comfortable and rust-resistant.
  • Included sponge to clean the blades.
  • Soft rubber handle to ease hand fatigue.

Cons

  • Too big for small hands.
  • Some customers said it didn’t last longer than one season.

Product Specs

Type Ratchet
Cutting diameter One inch
Safety lock Yes
Blade material Hardened carbon steel
Warranty Lifetime warranty

Our Ratings

Blade Quality
4.5 / 5
Cutting Capacity
5 / 5
Ergonomics
4.5 / 5
Durability
4 / 5
Total Rating
4.5 / 5

User Experience

I'm thrilled with these shears, as they've made pruning less of a chore and more enjoyable for me. The ratchet feature is particularly helpful for my weaker hands, allowing me to cut through thicker branches with ease. Although the blade may need occasional sharpening and the oil pad can be a bit finicky, overall, this product has been a game-changer in my gardening experience.

Weichuang Professional Pruning Shears

Best Budget Pick

The price of pruning shears can vary significantly. But if you only want to spend a few dollars, the Weichaung pruning shears may tick your boxes.

Despite the low price, the blades are made of high-quality stainless steel. They have been heat-treated and are high in hardness, allowing for sharp, quick cutting of small branches up to 1/3-inch thick in diameter.

The pruning shears are super light, weighing only 3.5 ounces, so they are ideal for small hands.

Pros

  • Suitable for left and right-handed users.
  • Safety locking mechanism keeps blades closed.
  • Easily adjust the tightness with the screw on the blade.
  • Spring tested to last 100,000 times.
  • Very lightweight (3.5 ounces) and easy to carry.

Cons

  • Not suitable for branches thicker than 1/3 inches.
  • Not the best for larger hands.

Product Specs

Type Bypass
Cutting diameter ½ inch
Safety lock Yes
Blade material Stainless steel
Warranty Not specified

Our Ratings

Blade Quality
4 / 5
Cutting Capacity
3.5 / 5
Ergonomics
4.5 / 5
Durability
4 / 5
Total Rating
4 / 5

Personal Perspective

For someone in need of a simple and affordable solution for pruning berries and roses, this product is a good option. I found it easy to use and perfect for small gardening tasks, but I noticed that these shears tend to lock when cutting tougher materials. They are quite small, so having an additional, larger pair of clippers is essential for dealing with bigger branches. Unfortunately, I experienced the spring flying off after only a few uses, which was disappointing. Despite this issue, the shears remain comfortable and efficient for daily garden trimming. Just keep in mind that they may not be suitable for tackling thicker twigs.

iGarden Combo Garden Tool Set

Best for Hedges

Pruning hedges with shears may take a while, which is why I am recommending this combo set. While you can certainly use the pruning shears for more delicate cuts, hedge shears and loppers can speed up your hard work.

This three-piece set features a soft grip on every tool, ensuring the user’s comfort and ease of use. The high carbon steel blades allow for quick and easy cutting on tree branches as well as hedges. The blades are hard and precision-ground, so they will stay sharp and resist rust.

Pros

  • Low friction coating for easy cutting.
  • Contoured and ergonomic handle to prevent hand fatigue.
  • Small hole on handle so you can hang it to store it.
  • Rust-resistant and built not to bend or break.
  • Includes lopper, hedge shears, and a bypass pruner.

Cons

  • The pruners are quite low in quality.
  • Best for light-duty work.

Product Specs

Type Bypass shears, plus lopper and hedge shears
Cutting diameter Not specified
Safety lock Yes
Blade material High carbon steel
Warranty Not specified

Our Ratings

Blade Quality
4 / 5
Cutting Capacity
4 / 5
Ergonomics
4.5 / 5
Durability
3.5 / 5
Total Rating
4 / 5

Community Feedback

Love the overall functionality of this product for backyard gardening needs; however, I encountered some issues with durability. On my first day of use, the large-handled shrub trimmers bent, making it difficult to cut effectively. The lopper and hedge shears have held up well, but the pruner shears were made of an inadequate alloy, causing them to break on my second attempt at trimming a small branch. While the product is suitable for regular yard maintenance, it may not provide the long-lasting durability some users are seeking.

Product Comparison Chart

Product Best Type Cutting diameter Safety lock Blade material Warranty
Vivosun Hand Pruning Shear Safest Pruning Shears Anvil Less than ½ inch Yes Stainless steel & titanium N/A
Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears Bypass Pruning Shears Bypass ⅝ inch Yes Steel with a non-stick cover Lifetime
Fiskars Micro-Tip Pruning Shears For Small Hands Anvil N/A No Stainless steel Lifetime
Swansoft Electric Pruning Shears For Trees Power 1 inch No Hardened SK5 steel One year
The Gardener’s Friend Ratchet Pruning Shears Ratchet Pruners Ratchet 1 inch Yes Hardened carbon steel Lifetime
Weichuang Professional Pruning Shears Budget Pick Bypass ½ inch Yes Stainless steel N/A
iGarden Combo Garden Tool Set For Hedges Bypass N/A Yes High carbon steel N/A

Types of Pruning Shears

Before you dive into my product recommendations, it’s important to know the different types of pruning shears, as they all have different benefits and drawbacks.

Bypass

Bypass shears are best for sharp and clean cuts. They are the best for the plant’s health since frayed and ragged edges can attract diseases.

Bypass pruners have two sharp blades that can cut through stems and soft branches up to ½ inch thick. Note that you shouldn’t use these pruners for dry or weak branches in case you clog or bend the shears.

Pros

  • They make sharp, clean cuts to encourage plant health.
  • Good for stems and soft branches up to ½ inch thick.
  • Many are made with comfortable and ergonomic handles.
  • Suitable for various tasks, including pruning shrubs and trees.
  • Available in a variety of sizes.

Cons

  • There are fewer budget-friendly options on the market.
  • Not suitable for dry or weak branches in case the blades bend.

Ratchet

These shears are similar to the shape of the anvil, but they have a catch-and-hold feature to ease hand fatigue. They also work for cutting larger branches, up to ¾ inch in diameter.

It might take a while to get used to as it’s a bit of a difference to employ the catch-and-hold feature. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll love these shears for dry, dead branches, especially if you have weaker hands.

Pros

  • The catch-and-hold feature eases hand fatigue.
  • Good for people with weaker hands.
  • Works well for thicker branches, up to ¾ inch thick.
  • Sharp blades that stay sharp.

Cons

  • Takes a while to get used to.
  • On the more expensive side.

Power

Power pruning shears are battery-operated. They’re ideal for reducing hand fatigue, so if you’re going to be pruning for a while or just have weaker hands — these are right for you. Simply squeeze the handle gently, and the power pruner does the hard work.

These can cut branches up to one inch thick and are available in an anvil or bypass style.

Pros

  • Many have long battery lives, lasting up to eight hours.
  • Ease wrist and hand pain while pruning.
  • The pruner does all of the hard work for you.
  • Quickly gets the job done.
  • They don’t get dull as quickly.

Cons

  • You have to remember to charge up the pruning shears.
  • Much more expensive than manual shears by about $100-200.

Anvil

Anvil pruning shears crush rather than cut. They’re best for dry, dead branches that will snap off easily. I don’t recommend these for softer branches since the anvil shears can fray them. Anvil shears are also for smaller stems and branches, so don’t cut anything more than ½ inch in diameter.

Pros

  • A good way to get rid of dead, dry branches.
  • A variety of options available to choose from.
  • Powerful with sharp blades for effective crushing.
  • Great for dead-heading annuals.

Cons

  • May fray softer bran,ches which can damage plants.
  • Not suitable for thicker branches.

How To Choose the Best Pruning Shears

Let’s look at some of the most important details to consider before making your purchase.

Type

Recap the pros and cons of each type and what each is used for to decide which is best for you: anvil, bypass, ratchet, or power?

Size

Consider the size of the shears and how compact they will be for you to hold and transport. But also consider the size of the branch that the shears can cut.

Most have a maximum of about ½ inch, ¾ inch, or one inch. Choose a larger capacity if you have tree branches you want to prune.

Safety

Pruning shears are sharp. Consider one with a safety lock, especially if you have kids or pets around. Some also have a cover that covers the blades when you aren’t using the shears.

Ease of Use

Consider how easy it will be to use the shears. Firstly, check the material type and how sharp the blade is. The sharper it is, the easier it will be to cut.

Take note of the cutting mechanism and if it will be easy on your hands or cause fatigue. Overall, power pruning shears are one of the easiest types to use because you don’t have to do the hard work. Ratchet shears are also brilliant for weaker hands.

Durability

Choose something that’s built to last and can handle repeated use throughout the pruning season. You should consider the blade type for this, as certain materials will last longer.

Titanium-coated blades and carbon steel blades are the most durable. Stainless steel is also a great choice. Non-stick blades are great for stickier plants, but they aren’t as durable.

Budget

Pruning shears come in a variety of prices, from less than $5 all the way up to about $250 for power shears. The majority of shears sit between $10 and $20, though. Consider your budget and shop within it.


Pruning Shears FAQs

Which Is Better: Bypass or Anvil Pruners?

Both are suitable for different things. For dry or dead branches, anvil pruners are better. For stems and soft branches, use bypass shears.

What Are Anvil Pruners Good For?

Anvil pruners are best for cutting away dead or dry branches. They crush the stems and branches rather than making sharp, clean cuts, so you don’t want to use these on stems or soft branches as they could fray healthy plants.

Can I Use Scissors for Pruning?

Scissors won’t be effective. They won’t make sharp, clean cuts, and the thickness of the branch or stem could cause your scissors to snap or bend.

What Is the Difference Between a Lopper and a Pruner?

Loppers have long handles to help you get into hard-to-reach areas, whereas pruning shears are short and compact, like small scissors.

Pruning shears usually have a maximum cutting diameter of about one inch, whereas loppers can go up to 2.5 inches thick. If you have trees or vines, a lopper will be more effective than pruning shears.

Why Are Shears So Expensive?

Shears can be expensive because they are made from quality materials, like Japanese steel. Not all shears break the bank. Many domestic models are available at reasonable prices.

How Do You Maintain Garden Pruners?

The best way to maintain garden pruners is to rinse the blades in soapy water, use wire wood to remove stains and stubborn marks, and then dry them with a clean rag.


Feedback: Was This Article Helpful?
Thank You For Your Feedback!
Thank You For Your Feedback!
What Did You Like?
What Went Wrong?
Headshot of Beth McCallum

About the Author

Beth McCallum

Beth McCallum is a freelance writer & book blogger with a degree in creative writing, journalism, and English literature. Beth firmly believes that a tidy house is a tidy mind. She is always looking for new ways to sustainably clean and tidy her house, that's kind on the environment but effective in the house, too!