How to Prune Tall Trees Without a Ladder

Let’s face the truth: not always can you get on a ladder to do some job. Some of us are too prone to vertigo, others may feel unstable, and some may just have no ladder suitable for that job. But does this mean you need to let your trees grow rampant where you cannot reach, putting everything around in the shade? No way. Some methods and tools will not make you leave solid ground. And now, let’s see them.

Pole Saws

Among different types of saws, specialized tools are designed for pruning trees above one’s height — pole saws. The namesake pole is usually telescopic, which allows for adjusting its height. These saws are battery-powered, enabling you to accelerate the job and not depend on the nearest socket.

With a cordless electric pole saw, the task gets much easier. If its height reaching up to 15 ft isn’t enough, you can use a ladder with it (well, we know you’d like to avoid it). It won’t be hard because these saws are lightweight, up to 10 lbs., and have a comfortable ergonomic grip. So you can stand on the ground while trimming branches on tall trees.

Chinese manufacturers develop the most popular (and the most affordable) ones. But there are also models by brands like Makita and Black+Decker. All of them come with decent customer service and warranty. As for convenience, the best way to choose is to hold the model you consider in your hands and check how it will feel.

Last but not least: while using a pole saw, you should wear glasses and a mask and care about your safety. Not only will sawdust and leaves fall from above. The branch falls too, and no matter how big it is, you better not stand under it as you feel it’s about to crack. Anyway, it’s safer for you than climbing a tree or even a ladder if you have reasons not to.

Rope Saws and Saw Chains

If you don’t want to buy a special tool for pruning and prefer DIY solutions, some tricks enable you to cut trees well above your reach. While some are rather tricky, we can focus on the most popular of them.

The most popular ones require a rope and a chainsaw chain. Attach ropes long enough to the chain on both ends. Then attach some weight to one end of the rope and throw it up so it falls from the other side of the branch. Let it go, so you can grab that other end and adjust it so the chain gets right against the branch. When it’s in place, alternate pulling both ends of the rope so the chain starts doing its job and cutting the branch.

If you don’t want to use a regular chainsaw blade, there are special rope saws designed for use in such a manner. Using them, as you may have guessed, is the same — except these are better suited for this use case. This method requires some muscle effort and precision while you do the throw, so the rope lands on the branch right where you want to cut it.

This method can be recommended if you cut a thick branch that your pole saw may be unable to handle. Or (maybe) if you don’t want to buy a pole saw. It’s quite good as a one-off. If you trim them systematically, buying a pole saw makes sense.

Hope you have learned something from these instructions. No matter which of these methods you choose, stay focused and take care of your safety. Don’t forget your glasses and a mask. And good luck!

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