Hedge Trimming Tips for Everyone
Why do hedges need to be trimmed?
Hedges need to be trimmed for a variety of reasons. The first is safety. If hedges are overgrown, they may interfere with walking paths or impact infrastructure like electrical wires.
How often for hedge trimming?
Any hedges that don’t flower should only be trimmed when necessary. For example, when they need to be reshaped. Some plants are picky about when this happens, so be sure to only trim your plants when it is best for them.
Typically, hedges will need to be trimmed every 6-8 weeks minimum in the warmer months and much less or not at all in the colder months.
It is best to trim newer hedges frequently, so they retain the desired shape.
Tools needed to trim hedges
You can use many tools to trim your hedges. There are electric trimmers that are good for small to medium hedges. Gas trimmers can be used if you have a wider surface area. You can also use hand shears or loppers. These are best for small or hard-to-reach areas or for areas that require more detail. Pruning saws are great for hedges with very thick branches.
Trimmers cut through hedges very quickly. It is helpful to have a face covering of some sort, like safety glasses or a face shield, to protect from flying debris. Also, if you have allergies, a face shield might help keep pollen and other pollutants out of your face.
Hedge trimmers are very sharp and dangerous. It’s best to use grippy, cut-resistant gloves to hold the trimmers.
Hedge trimming with any kind of trimmer
- Start with the easy part. Clear any problem areas or branches that are sticking out.
- Refine the shape of the hedge by cutting off areas of overgrowth. Start slow and slowly refine the shape.
- Thin out the inside of the bush as much as necessary. For this part, hand shears are best. You want to ensure enough air and sunlight can get through the outside branches and reach the inside of the hedge.
- Trim the bottom of the hedge near the roots.
- Very slowly, start to create the shape you want. Make sure to take breaks to reassess where you’re at and what you want the hedge to look like. Remember, the hedge will likely grow back if you make a mistake.
Tips for beginners
- Make sure your tools are sharp. Dull tools could ruin the shape of your plants but could also cause irreversible damage to the plant’s health.
- If you want a straight vertical or horizontal line, check the angle of your blade when cutting. It can be difficult to hold the edge completely vertical or horizontal, so you will have to keep adjusting as you move.
- It can be beneficial to leave the bottom part of the hedge a bit wider than the top. This will help sunlight reach the base of your plants and keep the lower levels of the hedge healthy.
- Be sure to grip the trimmers with both hands at all times.
- In between trims, take a rake or your gloved hands and pull out any severed branches or leaves inside the hedge. These might be distorting your view of the hedge.
- Instead of throwing the severed leaves and branches away, compost them!
If you don’t want to take on hedge trimming yourself, give us a call or complete an online request. We can set you up for regular maintenance to keep your yard looking amazing. We have. been serving the Southwest Florida area for years and already work for thousands of your neighbors.