If you've recently taken an interest in landscaping and have just bought your first pair of hedge trimmers, here are a couple of tips to remember when you start using this landscaping tool.
1. Assess the hedge you need to trim before you switch on the hedge trimmers
If you want your hedge-trimming work to go smoothly, you should not attempt to tackle any unruly-looking hedges with your tool without assessing them first. You should, for example, make sure that there are no birds in the hedges you want to cut (so that you don't injure them). Giving the hedges a good shake will ensure that any small birds that are hiding inside them will take flight before you start cutting the hedges.
If you come across any nests, you should avoid trimming the section of the hedge in which they're located. Due to the speed and sharpness of a set of electric hedge trimmers, any nests they touch (and any eggs inside these nests) will be destroyed in seconds.
Additionally, if there are trees near the hedges, you should check for fallen twigs and branches, too. If the branches are quite thick, your hedge trimmers might get jammed whilst slicing through them. Although this is unlikely to break the trimmers, you might end up accidentally taking a chunk out of the hedge whilst trying to free them.
2. Use timber and string to achieve a professional finish on your hedges
It can be tricky to achieve clean lines when you first start using a pair of electric trimmers, as much like with any landscaping tool, it takes a while to get used to operating it. To ensure you achieve a professional finish when trimming your hedges right from the outset, you should get a couple of cheap planks of timber and some string. Stick the timber into the ground lengthways beside the hedge and make sure that is it perfectly perpendicular to the ground; you can then use this as a guide when you want to create straight vertical lines.
To create level horizontal lines, tie a piece of string to two objects (such as tree trunks or fence posts) on either side of the hedge and use this as a guide. You should then take a step back and ensure the string is parallel to the hedge at every point. Additionally, you should try to avoid trimming the hedge beneath it too quickly so that you don't accidentally slice through the string when lifting your trimmers' moving blades away from the hedge.