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Leveraging the Power of Great Tools with a Fiskars Giveaway!

April 12, 2012
Fiskars PowerGear Small Bypass Shears

Fiskars PowerGear Small Bypass Shears - Perfect in the Greenhouse!

My most precious gardening tools are my hands. Without them, I couldn’t hold a shovel or shears or pencil.

Unfortunately, as we age, our hands may lose strength or become shaky or just plain achy.

Fortunately, tool designers are innovating products that take some of the strain off our bodies. Leveraging the power of the tools — letting them do the harder work — helps reduce the pain folks like me might otherwise suffer after a long day weeding and pruning and doing whatever else our garden demands.

This month Fiskars is featuring their PowerGear line of tools. These tools are designed to bear the brunt of the hard work so your hands and arms and shoulders and back (and etc…) don’t have to. Many in the line have even won the Ease of Use Commendation by the Arthritis Foundation.

Over a decade ago, I sustained an injury that temporarily left me with a barely working right hand. And, yes, I am right handed. And, yes, I refused to stop gardening when this happened. Along with embarking on a long stretch of physical therapy to regain my hand’s functionality, wearing a ridiculous brace that kept my thumb immobile, and screaming profanities every time I stretched my thumb inward toward my palm, I began using a pair of Fiskars PowerGear Large Bypass Pruners.

I’ll admit that the rolling action was a bit of a surprise at first, but now I look forward to that motion in my hand. And today, although my right hand works pretty darn well, I still reach for one of my PowerGear Bypass shears more often than not. Small or Large. Although I now have several pair of these pruners, I still keep the original pair I purchased many moons ago tucked in my kitchen tool drawer, right by the back door. That way, I know they’re always handy when I need to run out to harvest herbs or veggies while I’m cooking dinner. (Other pairs are tucked in my work truck to share with clients and in my greenhouse where I’m always snipping and tipping to keep things growing their best.)

Fiskars PowerGear Large Bypass Shears

Fiskars PowerGear Large Bypass Shears - Great for Small or Big Cuts!

Want a pair of these great tools for your very own?

The fine folks at Fiskars have generously offered to give away some of these great tools via gardenhelp.org to celebrate this fantastic line in April 2012. If you would like a chance to win one of these freebies, you may enter throughout the month of April 2012 by commenting below. Here’s the deets:

In your comment, tell us:

Be sure to include your contact information, so we can contact you if you win.  (If you don’t include contact information, you will be automatically disqualified.) We’ll be drawing one name each week until the end of April — that’s three chances to win a pair of great shears! Winners will be chosen at random — names in a hat sort of thing. Winners will be contacted by email and announced on gardenhelp.org as well.

Note: GardenMentors is a paid garden expert writer for Fiskars tools. You can read more of our articles on caring for aging hands and tool use on the Fiskars gardening information pages here:

34 Comments

  1. stuuse says:

    Wow, where to begin? I haven’t used the fiskar brand yet but I do always admire them when I see them in the store. I’m a young father, novice but eager gardener and to be painfully frank, I can’t afford my own! My daughter takes what little money I have (I happily give it to her) and so I don’t have much in the way of spare cash for nice things. My pruners have all lost their springs and I have bodged together a series of Frankenstein tools for my use. I try to grow a lot of my own food to help supplement our groceries. I have my successes and my failures. One thing that is always tough is keeping up with all of the pruning and other tasks in the garden. PowerGear Bypass Shears would be amazingly helpful, and they look great too! Please consider me for this contest. Thank you. (email address omitted in public post by admin)

  2. Margaret Lanphier says:

    I bought a PowerGear® 15-inch Anvil Super Pruner last year and love it! It’s so easy to use and makes filling the yard waste bin a breeze. ;-)

  3. mary lajoie says:

    I have been using a old pair of cutters that i got from the dollar store. They seem to be ripping the stems more than doing a clean cut. I think that these new cutters would be alot better than what i already have and Fiskars is a very well trusted brand. I would love to get a pair and use them instead.

  4. Mike says:

    I love the idea of mechanically assited tools!
    My mother instilled her love of gardening in me, she is now in her mid 70′s and her rheumatoid arthritis has set in. I swear that pruining is her all time favorite thing to do, her liberal use of pruners and shears would regularly cause disagreement between us but now her ailment has left her unable to keep up with her yard. She still get’s out there but it’s in short bursts. I’ll be on the lookout for some of these.

  5. Danita Day says:

    I have not used any of the PowerGear Fiskar products yet, but I have used the regular Fiskar hand pruner for years for my roses and other small pruning jobs. As a new resident of the state of WA I am looking forward to starting my gardening projects, and with the prolific growing season here I’m sure PowerGear bypass shears would be put to frequent use.

  6. James McDonald says:

    zI’ve only bought Fiskars for their office products. But I really like what I have seen so far about the Fiskar’s Reel Mower. I’d love to give one of the babies a test run.

  7. KGriffin says:

    I would LOVE to try some PowerGear pruners!! Anything that makes pruning easier is a win in my book!! Thanks, Fiskars!!

  8. Brandon says:

    I would love a good, sharp, bypass shear – even though I don’t suffer from arthritis. Yet.

  9. Sara P. says:

    I would love a pair of PowerGear bypass shears, as I do not have a pair of proper garden shears!!!

  10. Madeleine Lagerstedt-Hooks says:

    I was born and raised in Sweden, so Fiskars is a well known brand for me. Came to the US almost 20 years ago and brought with me a Fiskars pair of scissors. Over the years I have bought many a pair of additional scissors for different kind of projects, but inevitably they eventually get dull or break and get thrown out. The only pair of scissors still in my arsenal of tools are my original pair of Fiskars. The quality is outstanding, and I just this year decided to start growing quite a bit of our own food, and I have been eyeing the Fiskars’ gardening tools. I am also trying to convince my husband to get rid of the gas lawn mower and get Fiskars’ push mower. Still working on that part ;-)

  11. Jeremy M. says:

    Ive got several great Fiskars products but not this. It’d make a great, and frequently used, addition. I try to limit the number of tools I have, so the ones I do have need to be good.

  12. Madeleine, Thanks for the comment. I adore the Fiskars Reel mower & I’m not just saying that because we work with the company. It is nearly silent and cuts so darn easily and beautifully. Friends have borrowed mine & can’t get over how great it is. Keep working on your husband & thanks for your comment!

  13. James, thanks for your comment. The reel mowers are fantastic! I hope you get a chance to try one soon!

  14. Mike, thanks for sharing your (and your Mom’s) story. If you follow the links at the bottom of this post, you’ll find an interview I did with my Mom for Fiskars a while back. She too suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, but she won’t let that stop her in the garden. She shared quite a bit about tools that work for her and how she manages to get her gardening done without hurting terribly at the end of the day.

  15. Mary, thanks for sharing your story. Definitely, you want to get clean cuts when you prune. Ripping and tearing can do irreparable damage to your plants!

  16. Alison says:

    The older I get the more my hands hurt after a day of pruning or weeding. I haven’t been diagnosed with arthritis, but every once in a while I can actually feel the thumb joints grating. I’m sure I would get good use out of these cool tools!

  17. I used to read all those articles on making gardening easier as you age and think: that will be me someday. Well guess what, I’m there! I need these tools!

  18. Jezibels says:

    I have a pair of Friskars loppers and have used them for about 10 years, without even having to sharpen them. I always know which one to look for by the orange handles. I would love a pair of Friskars bypass pruners because I do not have a pair of handheld pruners that are nice and new with no problems, my current pair the lock has rusted permanantly on, my standby pair has an 1/8″ gap where the blades are supposed to meet and well the 3rd pair do not cut thru anything. Gosh I would just love to have a pair of new handheld bypass pruners!

  19. Mary Ann says:

    I am moving to a house with more outdoor space and more opportunity for gardening (yay!!). These sheers sound like a great tool – I would love to try them. The ones I have were my husband’s grandmothers.

  20. Deborah Robertson says:

    I love Fiskar tools because w/ their orange handles, I don’t lose them in the garden. With developing arthritis in my hands , I could use their new pruners.

  21. Julie says:

    I love the idea of these sheers. When I saw that they were recommended by the Arthritis Foundation I got really excited. I am a young amateur gardener who was hit with psoritatic arthritis at a very early age. I am constantly looking for tools that will help make gardening easier.

  22. Patty Hicks says:

    I have used a pair of the by-pass pruners that a friend owns and really liked how easy they were to use and kind on my aging paw. I also liked them because they were lighter weight than my professional pruners that I have used for years. Would love to win a pair of my own.

  23. Carmen says:

    If I won I would give it to my mother who is 80 years old, still living on her farm in western ND. She has 5 big gardens than she insists on tending every year. Any instrument that would make her love of gardening easier is my dream for her. That and when I help her, I get to use the cool tools too!!

  24. Hilary says:

    I am an avid, amateur, gardener and newly committed to growing only edibles this year in my mostly container/raised bed garden. However, after a day of trimming a couple of weeks ago, I found I could barely move my arthritic thumb for days afterwards. I would love a tool that would take some of this pain and aggravation away, since *I* cannot stay away from my garden.

  25. Pam English says:

    I am a brand new gardener – just got a plot in our local community garden – and I’m very excited to begin! A new pair of Fiskars would be a delightful way to start my tool collection. Thank you for your excellent ideas on this website. Pam

  26. Nancy Morrison says:

    As an aging professional gardener, I am getting quite worried about my right hand. I am very dependent on my right hand, as my job requires a lot of dexterity. In the past two years I have developed arthritis in just my right hand. My doctor says it is from overuse and that I need to develop gentler techniques in my gardening. I would love to try out the PowerGear bypass pruners to see if it will take the strain off my hands. I plan to continue gardening for many years to come, and I do not want my arthritis to be career ending.

  27. Our first winner is Shane Kaufman! Shane: we’ll be in touch via email to coordinate getting you a pair of shears.

    Everyone else who has already commented is still “in the hat” for future drawings later this month!

  28. Stephen Hackett says:

    I’ve just set up my own gardening business, and am mainly using tools and equipment I have had for my home garden. PowerGear bypass pruners would be a fantastic addition to my kit, as I do a lot of heavy cutting back and clearing in the gardens I look after. I have also recently developed ‘tennis elbow’ in my left elbow, which I guess might be eased by tools like these: ridiculous as I haven’t played tennis for ages – but there is no such thing as ‘pruning elbow’it seems…

  29. Our second winner is Mike. Mike, I hope you (or perhaps your Mom) will enjoy using these Powergear shears from Fiskars. I know my own mom, who also has rheumatoid arthritis, finds them easier to work with.

    Everyone else: if you haven’t already won, you’re still in the hat for our final drawing later this month. Cheers!

  30. Lyn Anderson says:

    I have nerve damage that affects my hands and having a pair of these would be much better than the others I’ve tried. The idea of having a pair that will work to trim my heirloom roses, or harvesting my garden and herbs. I love having a garden around the house, veggie, herb and flowers and bringing more bees, birds and creatures to my yard. Too many homes are only landscaped vs adding to our environment sustainable places for not only wildlife but for ourselves.
    As my hand doesn’t feel a lot with my grip I’d love not to rip my plants causing damage to them.
    Love the large lopers I own. But that’s for my trees and bushes.

  31. For all of you sharing your tales of aging, damaged, tired hands: I feel ya’. Keeping taking care of yourselves. Hurrah! to each of you for not letting the pain, numbness and such keep you out of the garden!

  32. Amy T. says:

    I love this contest and reading everyone’s posts!

    My story is that I have a long story of disabillity and thought I was never going to be a gardener. I took up the hobby for my partner , thinking back and enjoying the memories I had with my own grandmother in Ohio. I never really saw her in myself but these days I look like her, I take little kids to the garden like she did and I am committed like she was.

    I am trying to both foster my own creativity that was lost to my disability (I was an artist) and continue my grandmother’s traditions. I have spinal stenosis and arthritis, all of which limit my movement in the garden. I’ve been able to be creative with my movement, and often sit on the ground to guard my spine from bending too far. I have tried shears in the garden but need some type of help to prevent so much hand pain and back pain in bending to get to their stems.

    I want to continue to pass on the garden tradition to the kids and enjoy gardening for it’s peace-filled moments getting in synch with nature and actually finding that it distracts from spine pain and often hand pain. I have seen parallels between being an artist and being a gardener. In both, I lose myself to the work and am distracted far from pain.
    As far as Fiskars goes, I grew up having “the orange handled scissors” that were Fiskars as part of a family arsenal of tools. Those scissors were a primary tool of my family and my youth. We used them for everything from cutting paper crafts, to sewing dress patterns, to kitchen cutting. I’ve bought millions of pairs of scissors that were inferior and always go back to Fiskars.

    I would love to have the help with the shears for my own gardening and to continue both the fiskar’s name and the tradition of family, the gains of the process (decreased pain and increased creativity outlet) and get an obvious break from the old shears I’ve had that just…hurt. :)

    I am now actually getting so into the gardening thing that I have gotten to the point of growing too many seedlings and being fortunate enough to have too many plants. I’ve found that selling them has provided me an economic boost to my own disability check! The garden has become my studio, my doctor and my therapist.

    The garden tools are now my art supplies and my means to a new view on life. I felt that life was pretty bleak when I became disabled and in discovering the garden, my view opened up again and I have become a more functional person.

    Thanks for letting me share my story!

  33. Amy, Thanks for sharing your story. I’m so glad you’re finding a healing place in the garden!

  34. Today we pulled Jezibels from the hat in the last pair of giveaway Powergear gardening shears from Fiskars. Thanks everyone for sharing your stories, and thanks for being a part of what puts the “.org” into gardenhelp.org. Together we grow!

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