Best hedge trimmers for large hedges for 2020
By Adele Dyer
We pick five great, top-scoring hedge trimmers with the power and reach to cut tall, wide, long or overgrown hedges down to size.
These hedge trimmers all cut quickly, so you spend less time cutting a large hedge. Most have a long blade that will take off more growth in a single sweep, and can all slice efficiently through thick branches.
We put hedge trimmers through a series of tough tasks to see how they manage with a laurel hedge's thick branches, soft, sappy conifer growth and the whippy branches of privet. We also carefully rate them for ease of use.
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Best hedge trimmers for large hedges
If you find petrol hedge trimmers hard to start, heavy and noisy, you could look at our highest-scoring corded electric model. It has a 70cm-long blade, so you can cut more hedge in a single sweep. In our tests, it had no problem with thicker laurel and conifer branches, and left a great finish on privet hedges. It's a similar price to petrol models.
This Best Buy hedge trimmer is the best long-reach model we have tested. Unlike many models, this one is light and easy to manoeuvre, so you can use it to cut the sides of a hedge as well as the top. It has a powerful, 55cm-long blade that can cut thicker branches, so it's great for overgrown hedges. It's expensive, but if you have a lot of large hedges to cut it's worth the investment.
This is our highest-scoring Best Buy petrol hedge trimmer. It's 60cm-long blade cuts quickly and efficiently, letting you remove a large amount of growth in a single sweep. It makes short work of thicker branches, leaving a clean, smart cut. These petrol trimmers score well for reliability, and 90% of members who own one would recommend it to a friend.
Not found the hedge trimmer for you? Browse all our reviews.
And here's three hedge trimmers to avoid
You need a powerful hedge trimmer with sharp blades to slice through thick growth when cutting a large hedge. These hedge trimmers are underpowered and leave a messy, ragged finish.
Worst hedge trimmers
The short blade on a long-reach hedge trimmer is a strange choice, and means that this model isn't really suitable for large or small hedges. It's slow to cut, leaves a ragged finish and you can't alter the length of the shaft, so overall it's best avoided.
Choose a great hedge trimmer for tall hedges
Cutting tall, long or overgrown hedges can be hard work. Their sheer size will mean they can take hours to trim, and it can be hard to reach the top of tall hedges. In addition their twigs tend to be thick and woody as many are plants that would naturally grow into trees, such as conifers, beech or hawthorn.
There are a few factors to weigh up:
- A hedge trimmer with a powerful motor will cut quickly and easily through even the toughest growth. This could be a petrol or powerful cordless battery model, but these can be heavy and so tiring to use.
- A long blade will speed up cutting as you can cut more in a single sweep of the trimmer.
- If you have a tall hedge that needs cutting frequently it might be worth investing in a good long-reach hedge trimmer, so you can cut the tops without the risk of climbing a ladder.
- It's also crucial that the hedge trimmer is easy to use, as you will be cutting for a long time.
To find out more about hedge trimmers, read our guide on how to buy the best hedge trimmer.