Pole Saw VS Hedge Trimmer: What is the Difference?

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Maintaining a lush and well-groomed garden is a task that requires the right tools. Two confused tools are the pole saw and the hedge trimmer. While they might look like the unable eye, they serve very different purposes. But how do you pick one? Our blog post compares each tool’s pros and cons to help you choose for your green paradise.

Pole Saws

A pole saw, a chainsaw on a stick. It is designed to trim tree branches that are difficult to reach from the ground. With its long, extensible pole, you may chop high branches without a ladder.

Types of Pole Saws

  • Electric Pole Saws: Ideal for jobs within a limited range where power is available, these need an electrical cord.
  • Battery-Powered Pole Saws: Offer more mobility than electric models and are ideal for use in more extensive gardens.
  • Gas-Powered Pole Saws: The most potent option, suitable for extensive and heavy-duty cutting tasks.
Pole Saw VS Hedge Trimmer

Pole Saws Pros and Cons


  • Pole saws are perfect for reaching high branches without needing a ladder.
  • With a chain saw design, they cut through thick branches.
  • Some models are convertible and can be used as handheld chainsaws.


  • They can be heavier and more bulky, causing fatigue during prolonged use.
  • Precision in trimming is more complex to achieve with pole saws.

Hedge Trimmers

Trimmers for trees and bushes make it easy to keep them in good shape. They consist of a blade that oscillates back and forth. It allows gardeners to trim hedges into clean lines and shapes.

Types of Hedge Trimmers

  • Electric Hedge Trimmers: It is best suited for small to medium-sized gardens.
  • Battery-Powered Hedge Trimmers: They are ideal for more significant properties.
  • Gas-Powered Hedge Trimmers: They work well for extensive and thick growth.
Pole Saw VS Hedge Trimmer

Hedge Trimmers Pros and Cons


  • Hedge trimmers are built for shaping and can give you that perfect look.
  • A hedge trimmer can cover a large area, making it efficient for bigger jobs.
  • They’re adaptable to different types of hedges and bushes.


  • For taller bushes, the size of the blades may make it hard for them to reach.
  • They are not ideal for cutting through thick branches or tree limbs.

Differences: Pole Saw vs Hedge Trimmer

Ease of Handling

Pole Saw: Pole saws have long handles or blades to reach high branches without a ladder. Due to their extended reach, they are heavier than hedge trimmers and need a steady hand to use.

Hedge Trimmer: As hedge trimmers shape and manage hedges, they are lighter than pole saws. The shorter reach means they’re more painless and more accessible to trick when sculpting hedges and bushes.

Sheer Power

Pole Saw: Pole saws are potent tools equipped with a chainsaw at the end of the pole. They need to be strong enough to cut through thick tree branches. Pole saws can be found in manual, electric, and gas-powered variations, each offering different levels of power.

Hedge Trimmer: Electric and gas hedge trimmers cut leaves and thinner branches. They can cut hedges and bushes, but not as a pole saw.


Pole Saw: A pole saw doesn’t offer much versatility apart from cutting high, hard-to-reach tree branches. Its primary purpose is to trim or prune tree limbs, and it performs this task.

Hedge Trimmer: Hedge trimmers cut and shape hedges, making them more versatile. Attachments or changeable blades aid with varied vegetation types and shapes.


Pole Saw: The design of a pole saw is straightforward: a long pole with a small chainsaw at one end. The design is ideal for branch cutting without a ladder, even though they can only cut branches.

Hedge Trimmer: Hedge trimmers have a different design focus. For complex tasks like sculpting and trimming hedges, they include double-sided blades.

Cutting Capabilities

Pole Saw: Pole saws can chop heavy branches up to eight inches in diameter without climbing trees.

Hedge Trimmer: You wouldn’t use a hedge trimmer for thick branches. Instead, clip and style thinner branches and leaves up to a half-inch diameter to keep your garden’s appearance.

Safety Considerations

Pole Saw: Pole saws are risky if not handled due to their weight and height. Always wear safety gear, and be aware of the prospect of falling branches.

Hedge Trimmer: Hedge trimmers can be risky due to their sharp blades. Always ensure that the area is clear of people and pets, and wear gloves and eye protection.

Can You Use a Pole Saw as a Hedge Trimmer?

Considering their design and typical usage, it is not recommended to use a pole saw as a hedge trimmer. The pole saw’s powerful cutting mechanism is overkill for the delicate trimming and shaping that hedges need. Such misuse could lead to damaged plants or even personal injury.

Frequently Asked Questions: Pole Saw vs. Hedge Trimmer

Can Pole Saws Trim Hedges?

While pole saws are pointed for branch cutting, they may trim tall hedges where smaller trimmers cannot.

Can a Hedge Trim Trees?

Hedge trimmers are not recommended for use on trees. Tree branches need a saw-type blade, but hedge trimmers are for thinner hedge branches.

Are Pole Saws Safe to Use?

Pole saws are safe when used. Always follow the manufacturer’s safety instructions, wear PPE, and stand on solid ground away from obstacles.

Which is Better for Small Gardens: A Pole Saw or a Hedge Trimmer?

A hedge trimmer’s precision and ease of use suit small gardens with standard hedges and shrubs.

Can the Same Battery Work for Both Pole Saw and Hedge Trimmer?

Tools from the same brand and product range that use similar batteries may use the same battery. Always check compatibility before attempting to interchange batteries between tools.

Final Thought on Pole Saw Vs Hedge Trimmer

Selecting the right tool comes down to the specific needs of your garden. If your goal is to keep your hedges in picture-perfect shape, a hedge trimmer is the go-to tool. On the other hand, when dealing with tall trees and thick branches, the pole saw will make your life much easier.

Choose the right gardening tools by considering ease of handling, power, versatility, design, cutting capabilities, and safety. Remember that whatever tool you choose, safety should always be your top priority.

Leave a Comment