Now, I know pruning shears are a personal topic. Us gardeners have a weird loyalty thing going on with our shears. You want to make a pro mad? Tell them how much better your shear is than theirs.
We got the Corona peeps in one corner, saying flatly, “I’m not paying $50 for pruning shears!” “These are fine!” they insist. Uh huh.
Then we’ve got the Felco crowd circling with their shiny red handles. They did care enough to buy the best. We got the replaceable parts, the matching holster, the fancypants sharpener… I was one of these people. I had the Felco 8’s, the ones with that fancy dip in the handle so I could prune bigger branches with less wrist effort. I thought I was pretty hot stuff.
Unfortunately, my buddy Simon wouldn’t shut up about his shears. “Bahco”, he said, spitting tobacco juice, “these are the best.” He gave me a pair last Christmas, and out of simple politeness I gave them a go.
I chose the medium spring (yes, they come with three springs for different levels of, well, springiness), popped it on, and began pruning. It was my day off, and I wasn’t in the mood for pruning, but I pruned for a good hour – everything I could get the shears around, exclaiming all the while first to my partner and then to my more-patient cats about the fantastic super greatness of it all. “It’s like cutting butter!,” I crowed. I didn’t know pruning could be that good.
These suckers will prune through anything – I can easily prune branches the diameter of a nickel and can usually muscle my way through any fat stem I can fit in their jaws- they rarely need sharpening, and the spring has never fallen off.
They come in an unattractive shade of orange, which I guess has the upside that I never lose them (note to Bahco – I want them in purple please!). Other than that they are pretty near perfect. They come with normal handles (which I prefer) and rotating handles for people who are doing a lot of little nipping, like if you are a serious propagator, and different sizes for different hands.
Check them out on Amazon.com, I use the Bahco #PX-M2 which is about $40.