Terms of the Trade: What Is a Lopper?

Loppers are shears used for pruning twigs and branches that are less than 2 inches in diameter. As compared to pruning shears, loppers have longer handles and require two hands for use. There are two kinds of loppers--bypass and anvil. Bypass loppers work like scissors with two blades passing next to each other, while anvil loppers have one blade coming down on top of another. Many avid gardeners prefer a bypass lopper because of the clean cut the blades give as they pass completely through a branch. Anvil loppers have a tendency to crush and bruise stems as the blades come from either side of the branch to cut it. Bonus: Check out our video on the pruning process for expert landscaping tips!