It’s no secret that I’ve always been a fan of using Fiskars tools, whether it’s in the garden or for home use. I simply have never had any issue with them and they seem to last forever compared to a number of other tools I’ve had. I have a pair of scissors, for example, that have been used for nearly everything under the sun and, believe it or not, they’re like the Energizer bunny – they just keep going and going, whereas I have a knack for wearing out about everything else. In other words, their stuff is made not only to get the job done but to last.
So last year I was fortunate enough to try out various pruning tools from the company. And, as would be expected, I was not disappointed. This time around I got the chance to put some of the Fiskars Clearing Tools to use. These gardening tools work well for tackling those overgrown areas of the landscape and garden. I’ve even found them useful for clearing out areas for new beds – I mean can you really have too many?
Now I have to admit that when it comes to tools, I am a bit selective in that I’m not a very big person and I tend to be somewhat on the clumsy side. I once broke my nose with a hammer after all! Yes, I know…but that’s another story for another day. So needless to say, I am often supervised when handling any tool that could be potentially hazardous, like anything sharp or heavy. It is for this reason that I decided to start small.
First, I took on my routine spring cleanup, although it feels more like winter. This is where the 13-inch (33 cm.) Billhook came in. This nifty little tool is much easier for me to handle and not as intimidating as some of the larger ones. It’s specifically designed to tackle smaller jobs in the garden like dividing plants or edging, but its 6-inch (15 cm.) hooked blade is ideal for trimming shoots and stems too, and will also cut through grasses. I found it especially useful for cutting back the old mangled growth of my liriope. The handle and soft grip was comfortable throughout use and, to the relief of my family, it includes a finger guard for added protection, making it safe to use even for someone like me, which is a good thing because the blade is really sharp.
Of course, sometimes those clearing jobs call for something a little bigger. That’s when the slightly larger 18-inch (46 cm.) Billhook Saw comes in handy. While this tool includes all the same features as its little cousin, it has a 9-inch (23 cm.) blade for sawing through tough branches and clearing thick, woody growth. This was very useful for cutting down and removing the unsightly brush just behind the garden at the edge of the woods. I found both these billhooks to be amazingly easy to use and worked well for both cleanup and clearing.
My least favorite tool actually turned out to be invaluable when it came to slicing up roots in the new bed. While I normally won’t touch a hatchet (traumatic childhood event), with the encouragement, and supervision, of my grown son, I took on the task of chopping out the greenbrier vines using the Fiskars Hatchet. It’s about the same size as the larger billhook and also has a 9-inch blade, which was sharp enough to make cuts with ease, including those pesky roots as we got down into the soil.
And it was my son that took on the even bigger clearing obstacles. Sometimes, you just need something mightier for cutting through more fibrous plants. It was time to break out the Machete, which made the job of clearing brush seem like nothing, or at least looked that way to me. The machete’s 15-inch (38 cm.) blade powered through some of the toughest overgrowth we came across in no time. And, oddly, my son seemed to enjoy swinging that thing about as he laid out a path of downed weeds and brush.
Last but not least, there’s the Machete Axe, my son’s ultimate tool of choice. This bad boy is roughly about 29 inches (74 cm.) long with an 18-inch (46 cm.) curved blade ideal for clearing thick brush, chopping roots, cutting branches and more. It also goes one step further with an axe-like blade head that provides powerful, controlled chopping and splitting. It worked so well in our wooded area that he’s decided to use it some at work where, as a lineman, they are often faced with removing brush and overgrowth when replacing or putting in new power poles.
All these tools have a lifetime warranty and they include sturdy nylon carrying sheaths to keep them (and yourself) protected while not in use. Regardless of the specific one you choose, these clearing tools are definitely perfect for tackling just about any overgrown garden brush you come across quickly and easily. Once again I was not disappointed.