Pruning out dead and damaged branches and foliage is an important part of keeping your landscape healthy - When a storm comes through and breaks a branch, it can leave a ragged stub that attracts insects and fungi. Keeping a good pair of hand pruners and a pruning saw in your tool bag is very important!
These are the hand pruners and pruning saws that I personally recommend. These particular tools keep both quality and affordability in mind.
The Best Handheld Bypass Pruner
Fiskars Softgrip Bypass Pruner
I have both this pruner and the more expensive Corona pruners - While I do like my Corona tools, the Fiskars Softgrip bypass pruner is actually quite a bit easier to use!
If you have small hands, you might find the spread of the normal Corona pruners to be too much - The Fiskars pruner is very streamlined, making it my personal choice for pruning seedlings and perennials.
This pruner is also affordable - It comes in about half the price of the Corona pruners. The only caveat is that you're only going to be able to cut branches up to about 1/2" in diameter.
The Best Handheld Anvil Pruner
Corona ComforGEL Anvil Pruner
Corona makes excellent pruners, and the introduction of their ComfortGEL line reinforces that! Standard pruners have hard handles, and after a whole afternoon of pruning, your hands can start to get sore. Corona's ComfortGEL grips put an end to that.
Anvil pruners are a little more reliable than bypass pruners for pruning out old wood - As wood ages, it tends to harden, and bypass pruners can sometimes spread and slip when cutting through older branches.
The Best Lopper
Corona Compound-Action Anvil Lopper
If you have an orchard, you know good pruning tools are extremely important. For older wood and larger branches you need to prune, a pair of anvil loppers is definitely necessary!
These Corona loppers have comfortable foam grips and a hardened steel blade with a low-friction coating, making them comfortable and easy to use. The offset linkage from the handle to the blade gives you a lot more cutting power, as well.
The Best Floral Shears
Gardenite Ultra Snip Pruning Shears
A pair of good floral shears is a must-have in any gardening toolbag. With stainless steel blades and alloy zinc handles with soft rubberized grips, these pruners will hold up to plenty of hours of work.
Floral shears are good for deadheading flowers and pruning back perennials, and they can be used for taking cuttings as well, since they produce a good, clean cut. When dealing with soft, green tissue, larger bypass and anvil pruners usually crush the stems. With floral shears, you get a good, clean cut.
Floral shears are named because they are typically used by people that are harvesting cut flowers - It's important to have a clean cut for the stems to pull up water after they're put into a vase.