While it may seem tempting to curl up on the couch on chilly days, autumn can be a great time to get out in your garden before winter sets in.

Pruning shrubs, bushes and trees is an important gardening task in autumn. Pruning plants encourages new growth, and can help to shape trees, and prevent long branches from breaking. Pruning can also give your garden a neater look throughout winter when branches are often bare.

Most plants have specific pruning needs but there are general guidelines to follow when it comes to the job, using the right type of tools from Sunshine Coast Mowers.


Use secateurs to trim back small growth and deadhead flowers to reinvigorate shrubs and flowering plants. We recommend you only use secateurs on stems and small branches up to 10mm thick. Give the Stihl Anvil Secateurs a try for hard wood, plastic profiles or hoses.

Pruning saws

Use a pruning saw to give you fine control over cuts when removing tick branches that are growing in the wrong directions or crossing over other branches. Pruning Saws can be used on small branches up to about 35mm, for which we recommend the Stihl HANDYCUT folding saw.

Pole pruners

Use a pole pruner, which is like a pair of secateurs on an extendable pole, for high branches in trees (fruit) that need a cut back to a level where you can reach the flower or fruit. Power models have a bar cutter at the end and can cut through thick branches with ease, such as the Stihl HLA 85 Cordless Pole Pruner.


Cut hedges back in autumn to promote tight, green growth that has a chance to harden off before there is frost. Use shears as they let you make very precise cuts for rounded shapes and small hedges. Look for shears with wavy blades and gears to minimise tearing and make the job easier, such as the Stihl HLA 65 Cordless Long Reach Hedge Trimmer, to make short work of a long, straight hedge.

What you should be pruning:

  • All dead and diseased wood competing branches
  • Undeveloped buds or buds that have blossomed and any seed stems.
  • Dead leaves on bushes and grasses.

What to leave:

It’s a good point to remember that cold mornings are not good for branches if they have been left bare. So it’s always best practice to cut less away and monitor the bush or shrub during the colder months and continue with this practice as it becomes more established.

Come and see the team at Sunshine Coast Mowers at Mooloolaba or Caloundra, for any advice you need on pruning or trimming.