Which Type of Control Ladder Should You Choose

Which Type of Control Ladder Should You Choose

27th April 2015

Many keen gardeners here in the UK will be rejoicing at the great weather we’ve been having lately and the forecast of another warm and sunny summer.  Most of us will be working on our gardens, preparing the ground to get the garden looking fab for the summer.  One of the most risky jobs in the garden is hedge and tree trimming which involves working at height.  Many gardeners just use a normal household ladder, totally unaware that they’re putting themselves at risk as the ladder is just not suited to many of the tasks undertaken in the garden. 

Nowadays, it’s possible to buy specialist ladders for the garden and there are many types available with something to suit just about every garden situation.  We’re all probably familiar with the traditional style orchard ladder, a free standing step ladder designed to reach into the very depths of fruit trees for both picking and pruning – these have now been updated.  Most orchard ladders nowadays incorporate a 3-leg easel design that provides a more stable base from which to work and are usually made from aluminium rather than wood.  Antique wooden orchard ladders are very much in demand as pieces of home décor.

A ladder brace is a handy item of equipment – it turns an ordinary extension ladder into a free standing ladder that’s useful for light tree pruning and hedge cutting.  The wide base is attached to the base rung of the ladder in order to stabilise the ladder over a wide piece of ground.  You’ll need to make sure that you have sufficient stable, level ground in the places where this type of ladder extension is to be used.

It’s also possible to buy a heavy duty tripod ladder which can also be used for hedge trimming – this looks like a great buy as it’s so versatile.   However, for anybody with a large tall hedge, accessing the top can present quite a problem so looking at a specialist hedge trimming ladder is always a good option.  Many hedge ladders nowadays have actually been redesigned and act as mini work platforms.  Platforms are the ideal choice for maximum stability and freedom of movement (which is important when working on a large hedge).  Many of these platforms have wheel fitted for extra manoeuvrability, but don’t forget if you use one of these that every time you move it, you should check that the ground underneath the platform is stable and level. 

For those with larger gardens and tall hedges that need regular trimming and maintenance work, the best buy is probably a garden platform.  A garden platform is usually fabricated from aluminium and looks like a small piece of mobile scaffolding or work platform.  They’re not the cheapest option, but can save so much time for gardeners who have a lot of hedge to deal with.  They usually have a set of wheels in the centre so that they can easily be moved from place to place by one person.  They have rungs on each side and a work platform with a guard rail around it for added safety.

However large or small your garden, if you need to do any sort of work at height, then a dedicated garden ladder is always the safest option, particularly for those who attack their hedges with power tools such as electric hedge trimmers.  Safety the in the garden is a must if you want to enjoy the coming summer months to the full.