Using the right tool for the right job

Friday, 19 June 2020 | Gardener Expert
Posted in Garden Trader Blog, Gardening Advice

Using the right tool for the right job

It can be difficult to know what equipment to use for what garden jobs and let’s face it we all have a tendency to make do with what we have, which doesn’t always achieve the best results. Sometimes it pays to invest in a new piece of garden equipment in order to fulfil a particular task rather than making do and damaging what you already have. Using the wrong tool can also be dangerous so it’s important to get the right thing.

Here we look at the correct use of three misunderstood pieces of garden machinery.


Strimmers are perfect for cutting long grass and weeds, especially if you’ve left an area too long to go over with your lawn mower. They are great on awkward corners that you can’t get your mower into.

They are also ideal for dealing with ivy growing up fences that you want to trim back. But you need to make sure you keep the spool away from any hard surfaces, so that you don’t cause any damage.

What you shouldn’t use a strimmer for is cutting thicker foliage, in particular hedges. The delicate string or spool will break straight away on anything too thick.

Bed Redefiners

If your beds are edged with bricks or stones then it is likely that your strimmer will be able to keep the edges tidy, however if you don’t have anything solid on your borders then a bed redefiner might be the best tool for the job.

If your beds have previously been defined then a bed redefiner will keep the edge looking tidy and will help to give it a better finish. A bed redefiner is a handheld piece of machinery so it’s easy and light to manoeuvre. 

However, if you are cutting a new bed you will require a more heavy-duty piece of machinery. A bed edger has wheels and it is probably the best option for you. 

Hedge Trimmers

There are several different types of hedge trimmer on the market so it’s important that you find the right one to meet your needs. A light weight hedge trimmer is a good option for someone unsure of what they are doing – this allows you to stay in control of the piece of equipment and it won’t destroy your hedges. Blades that are very long make precision more difficult too. Picking a trimmer with wide teeth is important if you have some stronger branches to cut through, but you will need a more powerful motor to help with this, so bear this in mind. Strong secateurs or loppers/pruners are needed for thicker branches.

General safety tips

Always follow the safety guidance given with any piece of garden machinery and take care with any children, pets and wildlife in your garden.

Many strimmers and hedge trimmers are now battery operated and will mean you can avoid cutting through cables. However, if you are using one with a cable then ensure you have it plugged into a circuit breaker.

It is essential you are standing safely and can avoid losing your balance or falling over with a rotating blade/cutter. Gloves and goggles might be a good idea too.

For more specific information about your individual gardening needs contact your local dealer. Use our dealer locator to help you.