How To Use Hedge Trimmers – Electric Hedge Trimmer Usage And Care

Trimming A Hedge With Electric Hedge Trimmers
(Image credit: Zbynek Pospisil)

Nothing “furnishes” a backyard like hedges, bushes and shrubs. They make patios, walkways and garden patches look alive and vibrant and can be an important privacy element, not to mention raising the value of your home. 

But hedges and even individual evergreen bushes need to be maintained, and if left to their own devices they can look sloppy. You can remedy that situation quickly with an electric hedge trimmer. If you are new to this tool, you may have questions. What are hedge trimmers for? Should I use an electric hedge trimmer? When to use hedge trimmers? Read on for the answers you need.

Should I Use an Electric Hedge Trimmer?

Everybody considering clipping a hedge may have doubts about electric hedge trimmers. What are hedge trimmers for? The simple answer is that just like grass needs to be mowed, hedges need to be constantly trimmed and shaped. Hedge trimmers help a home gardener accomplish this. They help sharpen up the shape of your hedge, or can transform the shape into something more sophisticated. You can use a manual hedge trimmer, that works like a big scissor, a gas-powered trimmer or an electric trimmer, with or without a cord. The purpose for all of these trimmers is to help you maintain your hedges and bushes, but using an electric hedge trimmer may be the easiest and fastest choice.

Electric Hedge Trimmer Usage

Before you start using an electric hedge trimmer, be sure to take a few safety precautions. Make sure there is not a lot of activity in the area, especially kids playing nearby. Then take a look at the weather. Electric hedge trimmer usage when the hedge is wet can be dangerous. 

When to use hedge trimmers that are electric? Wait until the hedge and area around it are completely dry.

Be sure your trimmer is working properly. Before you plug in an electric cord, check to see that it’s in good condition, with proper insulation and with a plug that connects well. If all is in order, connect the trimmer with the power source. 

How to Use Hedge Trimmers

The best way to learn how to use hedge trimmers is to read the user’s manual, and then have an experienced gardener walk you through the process. You will need to figure out the best time of year to prune (for evergreen hedges, it’s late summer), and also determine the shape your hedge or shrubs should take.

Start your electrical hedge trimmer project using the lowest trimmer speeds. This gives you time to get used to the machine’s movement. Two hands on the machine is always safer than one. Step back from time to time to get an overview of the hedge. When you are done, rake up the foliage and dispose of it.

Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler has been gardening for 30 years. She is a docent at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her passion is trees, 250 of which she has planted on her land in France.