Gardening Tips with Charlie Albone



When doing a Spring garden clean-up, it’s always best to start at the top and work your way down. This way, you will get the best overall finish at the end of the day. Start by pruning all your trees and large shrubs first. These large elements will play a key role in the feel of your garden and create microclimates under their canopies, so give them a once-over annually to maintain their shape and to keep the canopy under control. These elements are also the ones you will miss the most if they were to suddenly disappear, so inspecting them for pests and diseases as you prune is a good idea.


Charlie’s top tips for tree pruning

  1. Before you start pruning, develop a plan as to where the cuttings are likely to fall and lay a tarp.
  2. The telescopic shaft on STIHL Battery Pole Pruners like the HTA 86 can be extended to 3.9m with one quick action, reaching trees up to 5m high.
  3. Maintain an angle of no more than 60° to the limb you are working on. This
    will make sure you are not under it when it falls!
  4. For stability, keep your arms at waist level; do not extend them overhead.
  5. When pruning, focus on removing the three D’s – Dead, Damaged and
  6. Only apply light pressure when you cut and avoid using the tip of the bar.
  7. To stop the guide bar being pinched when pruning heavy branches, make
    a small relieving cut in the compression side first (usually at the bottom of the branch), then a second cut (called a bucking cut) at the opposite side.


Charlie’s top tools for tree trimming & shaping

  • For low hanging branches, take a look at STIHL’s new GTA 26 Battery Garden Pruner. The GTA 26 is a versatile tool with a wide range of uses. Perfect for pruning trees or shrubs, cutting up garden waste, DIY projects and building with wood.
  • For branches up to 5m high, the HTA 86 Battery Powered Pole Pruner with telescopic pole from STIHL’s AP Battery System is the tool you need. Whether you are pruning trees, removing dead wood, trimming breakage due to storms or cutting back fruit trees, the HTA 86 delivers with every cut.

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