Best hand saw 2021: 6 top buys to keep trees and shrubs pruned to perfection

If you're on the hunt for the best hand saw to keep your garden trimmed, tidy and looking its best, look no further...

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Best hand saw
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Together with a handy set of secateurs, the best hand saw is just the thing you need to keep your garden in tip-top shape. Providing the means with which to prune both trees and shrubs, a good-quality hand saw will help you tackle any unruly branches, as well as weed out any potentially diseased or dead branches from your garden. 

Tackling the jobs that other tools like secateurs and loppers can't handle, the best hand saw is just the thing when you want to trim back a few branches but don't fancy dragging out a big power tool from your shed or garage.  

To help you choose the best hand saw for your needs, we've chosen our favourite models - both manual and electric - all of which can help with a variety of different pruning and cutting needs. We've also included some handy buying advice at the bottom of this page to help you narrow down your choices.

Simply scroll down for our selection of the best hand saws on the market - which we've marked with handy pros and cons to make your life easier - and if you find something you like the look of, our handy widget buttons will bring you straight through to the best deals available on the net today. 

If however, you're looking something for those bigger gardening jobs, take a look at our best hedge trimmer guide for our favourite buys to help you keep your plot looking its best all year round.

The best hand saw 2021

Flora Guard hand saw

(Image credit: Amazon)

1. Flora Guard Folding Hand Saw

Best all-round hand saw: comfortable to hold and with a super sharp blade, this will help keep the garden neat

Specifications
Best for: Both small and bigger branch trimming
Materials: High carbon steel blade
Dimensions: H2.03 x W7.39 x L26.92cm
Reasons to buy
+Triple cut blades+Comfortable to use+Foldable
Reasons to avoid
-Not suitable for very thick branches

Ensure shrubs remain neat and tidy and trim back any overgrown tree branches with this compact, folding design. 

Super sharp

The anti-rust, 17.7cm blade features three layers of teeth to make cutting quicker and easier, and as it's foldable, you can even bring it camping.

Sturdy grip

Designed with an ergonomic handle so long pruning sessions won't cause you any discomfort, the handy non-slip grip also ensures a safer hold while you work.

Lockable design

It features a safety latch which locks the blade into position whether opened or closed, making it both safer to use and safer to store.

Wilkinson hand saw for pruning

(Image credit: Robert Dyas)

2. Wilkinson Sword Bow Saw

Best hand saw for tree pruning: lightweight and strong, this will tackle larger garden jobs

Specifications
Best for: Tree trimming and firewood
Materials: Steel blade
Dimensions: H2.5 x W21.5 x L62cm
Reasons to buy
+Blade guard for safe storage+Lightweight+Excellent value for money
Reasons to avoid
-You’ll likely need a smaller hand saw, too

If you have a garden with several trees which you need to keep in shape, this great value hand saw will make light work of thick, overgrown branches.

Tough teeth

The triple ground teeth on the 60cm blade are extra hardened for durability, while the powder-coated steel finish ensures it remains rust-free.

Lightweight

Weighing just under half a kilo, the saw is pretty lightweight, all thanks to the tubular handled design. This all means you can use it for longer without fear of fatigue.

Safe storage

It comes complete with a plastic storage guard that you can use to cover the blade, perfect when it's stored away or simply when you're not actively using it.

Draper hand saw from Amazon

(Image credit: Amazon)

3. Draper Expert Soft Grip Pruning Saw

Best hand saw for keen gardeners: sized for bigger branches, this curved saw is a top choice

Specifications
Best for: Tough jobs
Materials: Steel blade
Dimensions: H11.5 x W21.4 x L105.4cm
Reasons to buy
+Both large and small teeth+Curved blade+Soft-grip handle
Reasons to avoid
-Slightly unwieldy for smaller tasks

Slice through bigger branches and smaller tree trunks with this nifty curved design.

Tackle tight spots

While you may struggle to get a bow saw into some spaces, this model will squeeze into the narrowest of spots thanks to its curved blade. What's more, it'll cut sizeable diameters, too.

Quick cutter

The long 50.8cm length blade features a combination of small and large teeth - the small teeth will handle straight cuts, while the while the larger ones will grip and slice though wet or damp wood, quickly and easily.

Easy to use

To ensure maximum comfort, the handle of this saw features both a soft grip and an ergonomic design. It also weighs just half a kilo so your muscles won't tire as much as they would if you were using a heavier saw.

a folding hand saw with a lime coloured handle by Spear and Jackson

(Image credit: Amazon)

4. Spear & Jackson Kew Gardens Razorsharp Folding Pruning Saw

Best foldable hand saw: this smart saw will get through the pruning and store tidily away

Specifications
Best for: Space efficiency
Materials: Carbon steel blade
Dimensions: H3.5 x W7 X L25cm
Reasons to buy
+Locking blade+Precision ground teeth+Very light and portable
Reasons to avoid
-Not suitable for very thick wood

Developed with the in-house team of horticulturalists who work at Kew Gardens, this folding hand saw has been given their expert seal of approval.

Top slice

Perfect for cutting old and new wood, this saw features a 17.8cm blade made from carbon steel with hardened and tempered teeth.

Portable design

As it's foldable, you can close it and pop the saw in your pocket as you move around your garden. Then once you’re finished, it's easily stored away in a tool box.

Featherlight

At just 190g, this super light saw won’t weigh you down or cause muscle fatigue. It’ll feel comfortable when you’re using it, too.

Bosch Keo Electric Cordless Li-ion Garden Saw

(Image credit: B&Q)

5. Bosch Keo Electric Cordless Li-ion Garden Saw

Best electric hand saw: boost your effort with this electric design, which is cordless for convenience

Specifications
Best for: Reducing effort
Materials: Metal and plastic
Dimensions: Not stated
Reasons to buy
+Electric+Cordless+Two year guarantee+Safety lock+Rust resistant
Reasons to avoid
-A pricier option

If you loathe to prune or find it difficult due to limited ability or strength, then this cordless garden saw is here to make your life a whole lot easier.

Cost vs benefit

There's no denying it - this cordless model is much more expensive than your average manual hand saw. However, if it's an easy life you're after, this handy helper will cut branches up to 8cm in diameter, so the cost may be well worth the time and effort saved.

Holding on

This model features a nifty, detachable 'A-Grip' which basically holds branches steady while you slice through them like a hot knife through butter.

Powered up

This hand saw comes complete with a battery that takes up to three and half hours to charge fully. However, when it's ready to go, you’ll be able to make anything from from 30 to 190 cuts on a single charge.

GRÜNTEK Barracuda Pruning Saw

(Image credit: Amazon)

6. Grüntek Barracuda Pruning Saw

Best hand saw for comfortable use: an ergonomic handle and sharp teeth ensure cutting jobs are a cinch

Specifications
Best for: Efficient work
Materials: Carbon steel blade
Dimensions : H2.5 x W13 x D52cm
Reasons to buy
+Lightweight+Suitable for both the left and right handed+Soft-touch handle
Reasons to avoid
-Won’t cut very large branches 

This easy-to-spot green and yellow hand saw is designed to make cutting a lot quicker and easier.

Cut through

Made with high carbon steel with seven teeth per inch, the blade on this saw measures 30cm in length. There are three cutting edges to make work speedier and more efficient, and also to avoid any annoying clogging.

Ergonomic design

Thanks to the curved, soft-touch handle, this saw is easy to hold and the slightly bent grip is designed to avoid any slipping while you work.

On the go

It comes with a protective sleeve as well as a belt loop, so you can carry this model around the garden and up ladders comfortably and safely.

How to choose the best hand saw

close up of a hand saw cutting through a tree branch

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Choosing best hand saw for your garden tasks will all depend on what exactly it is that you need to prune. Furthermore, if you have large trees and shrubs to cut back, as well as smaller branches, it's very likely that you'll need more than one tool to tackle all of your tasks. Combining a hand saw with the best secateurs and best loppers means you'll have all the tools you need to handle your pruning and trimming tasks. 

What types of hand saw are there?

If pruning trees and large shrubs is the bulk of your work, consider going for a bow saw. Not only will one of these cut on both the push and the pull stroke, but the handle also offers you a choice of grip positions making it a far more flexible option. It's also suitable if you tend to cut fallen branches and firewood often.

Alternatively, if all you need is something to trim back smaller branches, a pruning saw is a much better choice and it will fit it into areas where a larger blade won't reach. 

Straight or curved blade?

Manual hand saws come with either straight or curved blades. A straight blade is best if you tend to saw areas that are on a level with the top half of your body. If you're more likely to have to reach upwards (or downwards), a curved blade is an easier option as the curved edge with help you put more pressure on each cut.

Foldable or not?

If you don't have a great deal of storage or you go camping or hiking often, you'll find that a folding design is a far more convenient and versatile option. These are best used for smaller tasks though, as cutting larger branches with a smaller blade can be hard work.

Electric or manual?

Pruning a small garden little and often? Then a manual design is a perfect option for your needs. If however, you have a large plot, or a garden that's packed with plenty of shrubs and trees, an electric saw will make your workload a lot more manageable.

Handle design

Always for an ergonomically designed handle with a non-slip grip to ensure comfortable and strain-free working. You might want to consider wearing a pair of the best gardening gloves too. 

Safety features

Hand saws are obviously extremely sharp, so if you have children or you have the tendency to be a little clumsy, it might be worth looking for a design that features a locking mechanism and/or a safety sheath for added protection. 

Sarah Warwick
Sarah Warwick

Sarah is a freelance journalist and editor writing for websites, national newspapers, and magazines. She's spent most of her journalistic career specialising in homes and gardens – long enough to see interiors that blur the indoor/outdoor link become a must-have. She loves investigating the benefits, costs and practicalities of home improvement, both indoors and out, and it's no big surprise that she likes to put what she writes about into practice, so she's a serial house revamper.