Tim Harland and I tried out the latest Burgon & Ball range of pruners in his forest garden. We have both used many different makes of pruning tools, from the very expensive to bargain buys, with sometimes unexpected results in terms of ease of use and longevity. Our selection from the range consisted of telescopic loppers, a ratchet pruner, folding pruning saw and a pair of professional bypass secateurs.
Telescopic Compound Loppers
Starting with the Telescopic Compound Loppers, Tim was impressed with the speed and ease with which they cut his bamboo and over-grown hazel and I liked the build quality which is much better than the loppers I own.
The Ratchet Pruners were a bit of a revelation to both of us. They easily pruned hard, dead fruit wood that would have been difficult with ordinary secateurs. Two gentle squeezes per cut was it all it took.
Not that the Professional Bypass Secateurs were any slouches on the cutting front. They were comfortable to use and cut quickly and cleanly. Our only criticism was that you needed fairly big hands to use them but otherwise were one of the best pairs either of us had used.
The folding Pruning Saw was very well made and the blade can be locked at two different angles making it particularly useful for cutting in hard to reach places. We found it cut very nicely (above) and being large pocket sized should prove useful for foraging sticks as well as general pruning tasks.
We also tried a Perennial Spade, part of B&B's RHS approved range of tools. It is designed to divide perennial plants with the minimum of fuss and disruption, which it did with aplomb.
John Adams and Tim Harland both produce Permaculture Magazine. A range of Burgeon & Ball quality garden tools are available from Green Shopping.