Most people think of pruning when they have a plant or tree that is overgrown or in
Pruning your plants on a regular basis can avoid damage before it occurs and enhances appearance and condition in so many ways.
There are many good reasons to prune, including maintaining plant shape and size, increasing fruit and flowers and directing and managing growth. Among the many reasons to prune, the most important is to keep your plants healthy.
In addition to knowing why and when you need to prune is knowing how to keep your pruning tools in top condition. Regular maintenance will keep the cutting edges of your pruning tools razor sharp. Sharp blades provide clean, straight cuts that will heal quickly.
Gardeners using pruning tools occasionally for one or two hours at a time should maintain their tools after every use. Lubricate the friction surfaces where the blades touch. Cleaning the blades with an oily rag coats them with a layer of oil that helps protect them against rust. Cleaning and oiling will keep your tools’ actions smooth and fast.
Get the quality tools you need to prune on a regular basis to maintain the best of health for the plants in your garden. Secateurs are great for those with a green thumb and have been scientifically designed and tested for more comfort, less fatigue and greater efficiency.
Use a tungsten-carbide sharpener, not a file, to sharpen your secateurs blades. Start at the base of the cutting edge and stroke outward and off the tip of the blade. Apply light pressure. About five or so strokes should do the trick. The curve of the blade is important, so if your blade becomes flat or uneven consider replacing with a new one.
Top Tips for Pruning
1. Cut on an angle: Angled cuts always drain better than straight cuts, ensuring each cut leaves a clean surface and not a jagged edge.
2. Use the correct tools: Sharp secateurs for small shoots, long-handled loppers for higher or thicker ones and a saw for small branches.
3. Dress for the job: To prevent scratches, wear a long-sleeved shirt and trousers. Closed-toe shoes and thick gloves with good rubber or leather grips are also recommended.