Best hedge trimmer: 7 top buys for neat garden borders

The best hedge trimmer will help keep shrubs, hedges and bushes neat with very little elbow grease. Explore our top picks of corded and cordless models

Best hedge trimmer: Bosch AHS Electric Hedge Cutter lifestyle image
(Image credit: Bosch)

The best hedge trimmer is a must for maintaining bushes, hedges, and other green borders. Not only do hedge trimmers garden looking neat, but they also help keep your green borders healthy. 

Keeping your hedges trimmed also adds to your home’s kerb appeal and is a must if you’re thinking of putting your property on the market this summer. To help you determine which product is the best for your garden needs, we’ve selected the best hedge trimmers for beautiful borders.

Want only cordless models? Check out the best cordless hedge trimmers.

Best hedge trimmer 2020

Bosch AHS 55-20 Electric Hedge Cutter

(Image credit: Amazon)

1. Bosch AHS 55-20 LI Cordless Hedgecutter

Best hedge trimmer you can buy: this Bosch trimmer is kind to backs, but hard on tough branches

Best for: a comfortable grip
Power: Battery, 18V
Cordless?: No
Blade length: 55cm
Weight: 2.6kg
Reasons to buy
+Lightweight, back-friendly design +Powerful performance+Easy to use
Reasons to avoid
-Cord can get in the way-Smaller gardens may be better with a more compact model-Quite expensive

An all-round winner, this Bosch hedge cutter is well designed for both comfort and safety.

Easy to use

The fact that this hedge cutter has earned an AGR certificate for its superior back friendliness is partly testament to why it’s made our top spot, but it’s also our winner for the fact that it doesn’t cut down on power for the sake of that comfort. Its impressively light 2.6-kilogram body still packs a powerful motor, putting considerable heft behind the laser-cut, diamond-ground blade for cutting performance that left users very impressed indeed. 

Recommended for

Those who aren’t used to handling a hedge cutter, as well as people who suffer from a bad back.

Added features

Its 20mm tooth spacing with sawing function allows you to cut branches that don’t fit in between the teeth for a thorough job. It also comes with a tip protector to ensure you don’t damage the blade when cutting along walls and paths.

  • Buy the Bosch AHS 55-20 LI Cordless Hedgecutter

Best lightweight petrol hedge trimmer: McCulloch Superlite Hedge Trimmer, black and yellow

2. McCulloch Superlite 4528 Hedge Trimmer

Best petrol hedge trimmer: a pretty lightweight cordless petrol trimmer ideal for large gardens

Best for: when you need to work far away from the house/mains
Power: Petrol
Cordless?: Yes
Blade length: 45cm
Weight: 4.8kg
Reasons to buy
+Lightweight and easy to hold+Powerful 600W engine+Easy to start up
Reasons to avoid
-Can feel heavy when used for long periods-Petrol can be a tad messy-May need a bit more welly to go going

Offering excellent cutting power, this petrol design is great for small to medium hedges and bushes where there’s no power connection.

Easy to use 

It might not seem like it compared to some of our electric picks, but for a petrol trimmer this is ‘superlite’. Users love how easily it slices through even thicker branches and its ability to handle big jobs like really overgrown hedges, as well as how simple it is to start compared with other petrol models. Put simply, for all the power of petrol with a lot less of the faff you might expect, give this one a go. 

Recommended for 

Use in areas where you need to work away from the house and away from a power connection. 

Added features

As well as fitting comfortably in the hand, this hedge trimmer is surprisingly quiet for a petrol model. Its Soft Start system is easy to use while the air filter can be removed for maintenance without the need for tools.

  • Buy the McCulloch Superlite 4528 Hedge Trimmer

Best hedge trimmer for medium hedges: Black & Decker Hedge Trimmer, orange and black

3. Black & Decker GT6060 Hedgetrimmer

Best electric hedge trimmer: a powerful electric trimmer ideal for medium hedges

Best for: a powerful yet user-friendly corded design Power: Electric
Power: Electric, 600W
Cordless: No
Blade length: 60cm
Weight: 4.46kg
Reasons to buy
+Two-handed starting switch for safety+Ergonomic design+In-built cable management
Reasons to avoid
-May have a shorter lifespan than others-Quite noisy-Blades can become blunt 

Whether you’re tidying up the front hedge or doing a bigger landscape project out the back, this powerful 600-watt hedge trimmer makes fast work of overgrown greenery.

Easy to use

The thoughtful design of this Black + Decker hedge trimmer makes it tops for safety and convenience. The two-handed starting switch means that it can’t be started by accident, either by you or any little hands that might come across it in the shed or garage. It also features cable retention to safely and securely manage the lead while you’re mid-lop. Reviewers found it to be user-friendly too, even the self-confessed gardening loathers say it feels sturdy and safe, but is still lightweight and easy to manoeuvre. 

Recommended for

Use on small to medium hedges and choose this model if you want a trusted brand with plenty of safety features.

Added features

This two-handed trimmer has a powerful motor and dual action, asymmetric blades for efficient trimming of medium hedges and branches up to 25mm diameter.

  • Buy the Black & Decker GT6060 Hedgetrimmer

Best hedge trimmer for speed: Honda Hedge Cutter, red and black

4. Honda Hedge Trimmer HHH25D75ET

Best hedge trimmer for speed: when you need a job done quickly, this petrol trimmer is the one for you

Best forA low vibra: a low vibration design that gets on with the task in hand
Power: Petrol
Cordless?: Yes
Blade length: 72cm
Weight: 6.6kg
Reasons to buy
+Low-vibration+Quiet for a petrol model+Ergonomic adjustable handle 
Reasons to avoid
-High price tag-Can be heavy if held over long periods

Number one for low noise and low emissions, Honda has come up trumps with this cordless petrol model.

Easy to use

If the prospect of a powered hedge trimmer leaves you quaking, you might want to consider this Honda model. Not only is it specifically engineered to operate with minimal vibration, but it also tops up the comfort with ergonomic controls and an adjustable handle, both intended to minimise fatigue while you go about your business. It allows you to change your grip for cutting the face of the hedge as well as the height while a fierce double blade and four-stroke engine take care of thick branches. 

Recommended for

All types of hedge, even overgrown and rough greenery.

Added features

As well as being low vibration, this hedge trimmer is ergonomic, easy and comfortable to hold and uses four-stroke oil.

  • Buy the Honda Hedge Trimmer HHH25D75ET

Best hedge trimmer for small hedges: Bosch Cordless Shrub Shear Set, green and black

5. Bosch Cordless Edge Grass and Shrub Shear Set

Best small hedge trimmer: this cordless set is perfect for everyday jobs around the garden

Best for: Shaping small hedges and borders
Power: 3.6V Lithium Battery
Cordless?: Yes
Blade length: 12cm
Weight: 549g
Reasons to buy
+Quick and easy to use+Anti-blocking system+Multi-click attachments available
Reasons to avoid
-Not for use on larger projects-Users may get fed up recharging the battery-Short blade

When you just need something for a quick tidy up, this one’s for you and it’s fast charging, too.

Easy to use

The Shrub Shear Set from Bosch is our best hedge trimmer for arthritis sufferers and gardeners with mobility issues or fatigue, all thanks to its light weight and ability to be operated one-handed. Of course, it won’t make light work of big hedges, but it’s perfect for neatening shrubs, detailed work, short box hedges and otherwise sharpening up the look of smaller gardens where a larger trimmer would be overkill. Users love that the battery was so small and quick to charge, proving that electric trimmers are coming on leaps and bounds. 

Recommended for

Those with small gardens or mobility issues, which make using a traditional sized hedge trimmer out of the question.

Added features

Compact and lightweight, this cordless edging shrub and shear set comes with a range of attachments including a sprayer and spreader. These can be swapped in easily thanks to the Multi-Click system.

  • Buy the Bosch Cordless Edge Grass and Shrub Shear Set

Bosch UniversalHedgePole 18 Extendable Hedge Cutter

(Image credit: John Lewis & Partners)

6. Bosch UniversalHedgePole 18 Extendable Hedge Cutter

Best extendable hedge trimmer: when you need to reach up high for hedges and trees, this one comes with a telescopic extendable pole

Best for: reaching the tops of tall hedges
Power: electric, 18V
Cordless?: Yes
Blade length: 43cm
Weight: 3.6kg
Reasons to buy
+Extendable telescopic pole+Shoulder strap+Pivoting cutting head
Reasons to avoid
-May feel heavy after a while-Not as strong as the petrol version

Perfect for trimming tall, awkward and hard-to-reach hedges, this model comes with an extendable pole, which also enables you to cut back low hedges without having to bend down.

Easy to use

Thanks to its telescopic 2.6m reach, this trimmer is ideal for taller hedgerows and the blades cut cleanly and evenly up to 16mm in diameter. It’s also powerful with a 518 V Lithium-ion battery and is fairly lightweight, so it’s easy to handle with rubber handles for a comfy grip.

Recommended for

Anyone who needs to tackle taller hedges and branches but doesn’t want to call the professionals in. It’s also great for those who suffer from a bad back or knees, as the extendable pole means you can reach low as well as tall shrubbery, without having to bend down.

Added features

An adjustable, 135° pivoting cutting head allows for easy trimming while dual action hardened steel blades are strong and sturdy. There’s also an electronic anti-blocking system for continuous action.

  • Buy the Bosch UniversalHedgePole 18 Extendable Hedge Cutter

Flymo 9671028-01 Easicut 460 Hedge Trimmer, 450 W, Cutting Blade 45 cm

(Image credit: Flymo, Amazon)

7. Flymo Easicut 460 Hedge Trimmer

Best budget hedge trimmer: make light work of hedges and bushes in a smaller space

Best for: Lightweight trimming
Power: electric
Cordless?: no
Blade length: 45cm
Weight: 3.74kg
Reasons to buy
+Dual action blade for a neater finish+Central handle for safer use+Powerful motor
Reasons to avoid
-Not ideal for larger projects-Some prefer a heavier model-Not cordless

Flymo’s hedge trimmer is designed especially for small gardens and it weighs in at just 3.28kg so it’s easy to handle.

Easy to use

With diamond ground, dual reciprocating blades, this trimmer is easy to use and is lightweight too. The centralised handle is comfy to operate and feels safer as well.

Recommended for

Compact city gardens and smaller hedges that just need a quick tidy up.

Added features

Buyers recommend it for those who don’t want the heavy, unwieldy, larger hedge trimmers. The long blade length and powerful motor are also great on ornamental trees and shrubs.

  • Buy the Flymo Easicut 460 Hedge Trimmer

What is the best hedge trimmer 2020?

We think the best hedge trimmer you can buy right now is the Bosch AHS 70-34 Electric Hedge Cutter, as its ergonomic design is comfortable and safe to use.

How to buy the best hedge trimmer 2020

If you’re not sure which model is the best for your garden, check out our handy guide below to help you get started. It’s also wise to do your homework when it comes to the legalities of trimming a neighbour’s hedge or any branches that are overhanging your outside space. Before you do anything, have a chat with your neighbour if you can, as this will dispel any worries and it’s the polite thing to do – plus, if you get their permission you’re in the clear. Essentially, it’s ok to snip back any branches or roots that creep onto your property but you must only go as far as the boundary line and no further. If you do, your neighbour could take action against you. Never trespass onto their land and make sure there are no bird’s nests or other wildlife making its home in the hedge.

What are the legalities of trimming a neighbour's hedge?

Over half of gardeners said they would chop down a neighbour's branch without asking if it was hanging over into their garden – or even if they weren't sure what the property boundaries were. 

The potential legal repercussions of this? Your neighbour could take you to court for criminal damage, and you could face a fine. And while this is unlikely to happen, if you don't know your neighbours, you can't predict how they will feel about their foliage, invasive or not. So always ask first.

Cordless vs corded

If you have a big garden or simply don’t want to run the risk of slicing through the power cable, look for a cordless hedge trimmer. However, if you’re happy cord-wrangling, corded hedge trimmers tend to be more reliable in terms of power. The other big choice is between electric and petrol hedge trimmers, where the former are lighter and tend to be cheaper while petrol designs usually pack a bit more power. We’ve included both types in our list but have erred more on the side of electric, as the offerings in the shops right now tend to be more varied and with the advent of the 36V battery, are beginning to compete with petrol. 

Further Advice

The big names are all here, from Bosch to Black + Decker, but be sure not to unduly dismiss relative newcomers such as Ryobi – they have a lot to offer for a small price. 

For more garden-related buyer's guides and advice, visit our dedicated garden hub page. Keep the lawn in check too with our best lawnmowers buying guide and keep on top of garden jobs with our month-by-month guide 

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