Telescopic long reach pole pruners
Telescopic pole saw and lopper head pruners.
Long reach pole pruners are designed for cutting higher branches without the need for a ladder. The pole itself can be of a fixed length or telescopic for added versatility and easy storage. Pole pruners are particularly useful for pruning fruit trees.
Most pole pruners offer the option of fitting either a saw attachment (for cutting thicker branches) or a lopper head for general pruning. The lopper head is normally activated by the user pulling on a length of cord although some models have a rigid length of wire running inside the pole itself.
Telescopic pole saw tree pruners are easier to use than the fixed pole pruners because you can set the pole to the exact length required. Fixed length pole pruners are also more cumbersome to store when not in use.
Pole pruners are available from around 2.5 metres in length up to 7 metres for professional models. Remember to allow for your own height when estimating the length required.
When looking to purchase a pole pruner with a lopper cutting head, try to get one with a double lever action (where the cord passes through a couple of pulleys - most lopper heads will have this feature). The mechanical advantage created by the pulleys will make the cutting through thicker branches much easier. Ratchet action lopper heads allow you to gradually cut through the branch with multiple pulls on the operating cord.
Multi-tool manufacturers Wolf Garden make a decent 4 metre telescopic pole pruner that will accept a variety of attachments including a lopper head, pruning saw and fruit picker.
Tips for using a long reach pole pruning saw.
When sawing a horizontal branch at height, try to cut halfway through both sides of the branch to prevent the bark from tearing. Some pole saws will have a curved 'bark cutter' at the base of the blade for this reason. Alternatively, remove most of the branch with the first cut, then remove the stub with your final cut. Always remove larger branches in sections.
Don't stand directly underneath the branch whilst cutting, not only will you get neck ache, you may get a head ache!
IMPORTANT - Never use a long reach pole pruner anywhere near overhead power cables - call the professionals instead.