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Here is an overview of the cutting tools to take with you when pruning olive trees in the countryside.

Professional farmers and contract pruners are certainly very familiar with the most suitable tools for olive pruning and how to use them; somewhat less so perhaps the owners of small family olive groves, for whom this is not their main occupation.

Beginners in pruning, as well as experienced farmers, however, may find some up-to-date information on the most reliable and technological tools useful for pruning with less effort, in less time, safely and also with more respect for the plant (as clean cuts heal better) and the environment.


Olive pruning tools: electric, pneumatic, and manual

A first distinction to be made is on the type of power supply used by cutting tools.

First, we find the timeless “elbow grease”, i.e. the force exerted by man on hand tools. Besides being the oldest, it is certainly the most environmentally friendly solution, as no pollutants are released into the environment. On the other hand, the exclusive use of hand tools is particularly tiring for the operator and certainly extends the time required for pruning. And we all know that time is money.

Endothermic combustion engines have also long been used for pruning. The most classic example is the engine-driven chainsaw. This tool allows very heavy work to be carried out quickly; indeed, it is preferable to use it for cutting larger diameter branches, as it is quite a heavy tool and, especially if used for a long time, puts a lot of strain on operators. The latest generation of engines have greatly reduced emissions, but the exhaust gases generated by burning only petrol or a mixture of petrol and oil remain polluting, also acoustically, as they are noisy.

From an environmental and economic point of view, engine-driven compressors, compressed air generators, are definitely a step forward. The compressed air is always supplied by an endothermic engine (petrol or diesel), but several cutting tools can be fed through long hoses at the same time, ensuring the same performance for each one. Even with the same consumption and emissions compared to a classic chainsaw engine, therefore, the compressed air yield is much higher and, consequently, pollution is reduced. Operators also find themselves handling lighter, more manoeuvrable, and vibration-free equipment with less fatigue. Lastly, the work of several pruners at the same time, even on several neighbouring plants, reduces the number of man-hours needed to complete the job and thus further reduces costs.

Last but certainly not least, electric battery-powered tools for olive pruning guarantee light weight, easy handling, low vibration, low noise, total respect for the environment and, at the same time, efficiency and high performance. The lithium technology of modern batteries guarantees a long working autonomy. Not to be underestimated is the fact that recent portable photovoltaic systems allow charging directly in the field when the weather is good.


Tools for pruning olive trees: shears

Pruning shears are the main tool to be used for the youngest branches of the olive tree. Using the manual ones, whose version for pruning olive trees has either straight double-edged blades (such as the Campagnola S2 model) or a curved anvil-cut blade (S6 model),

you can make cuts up to about a couple of centimetres in diameter; with electric and pneumatic ones you cut about twice as much.

The size and weight of these tools let them be used easily even inside the foliage for targeted and precise cuts. The quality of the cut, however, also depends very much on the quality of the steel and the manufacturing process of the blades and, subsequently, on the accuracy with which they are sharpened and lubricated during work.


Tools for pruning olive trees: the hacksaw

Hand saws are used for branches that have already reached a certain diameter and wood hardness. The single blade, serrated and straight, has different lengths.

Shorter bladed saws are often fold-up type: with the cutting edge housed in the handle they can also be carried in a pocket without the risk of injury.

Campagnola offers the manual models S15, S25 and S30 with blades of 15 cm (fold-up), 25 cm and 30 cm respectively.

Conversely, electric or pneumatic pruners with a bar and chain are used to perform similar or even heavier cutting tasks in a mechanised manner.


Tools for pruning olive trees: loppers

Campagnola’s products include the STAR 50 pneumatic loppers with straight blade and the F/6 U version with hooked blade, both with fixed extension poles from 50 to 300 cm, and the S20 (straight anvil-cut) and S21 (curved anvil-cut) manual models.

The hand loppers are shears with a longer handle for cutting branches of considerable diameter and especially those that have grown to a certain height above the ground. The blades can be straight anvil-cut or curved anvil-cut, while the handle poles are fixed.


Olive tree pruning tools: chain pruners

Pruners are the equivalent of a engine-driven chainsaw, but in a version mounted on a fixed or telescopic extension pole (with a 4- or 8-inch bar) and a chain with a smaller number of links. They allow cuts on branches up to twenty centimetres in diameter.

In the Campagnola range you can find lightweight, manoeuvrable electric and pneumatic chain pruners. The Campagnola pneumatic products include the LASER and LINX models, while the battery-powered models include T-CAT M, T-REX and T-FOX.

These chain pruners offer greater ergonomics and flexibility of use than the classic olive tree pruning engine-driven chainsaw.


Olive tree pruning tools: extension poles

Extension poles, be they fixed or telescopic, make for more accurate and safe pruning directly from the ground, without having to use trolleys or ladders to reach higher tops. They are available for both electric and pneumatic tools.

Campagnola catalogue features cutting tools with a dual use: they can be mounted on an extension pole, or held directly.

The STARK M and STARK L electric shears are compatible with a telescopic extension pole (1.5 m – 2.30 m) equipped with a quick clamping system for the tool and a battery connection at the bottom of the extension pole for better balance of the tool.

Telescopic shears for olive tree pruning are indispensable, for example, for shortening the tops with a return cut that would otherwise not be possible from the ground (see also STARK 90-160-220 models). For the same reason, telescopic saws – such as the T-REX electric chain pruner (160-240 / 250-300) – are also the best saws for pruning olive trees.

Olive pruning and harvesting: Campagnola tools

When pruning, it is important to make clean, precise cuts that the plant will find less difficult to heal; it follows that this job requires professional tools.

Campagnola blades are made of highly resistant forged steel. The chains are also of the highest quality, as are all the other materials from which the tool components are made.

The catalogue, with the PROFESSIONAL, GREEN and SMART lines, includes hand tools, electric tools with plug-in batteries, pneumatic tools, tools connected directly to the tractor’s power take-off, or tools equipped with an endothermic engine.

In this way, several tools share the same power source, which can therefore be used with both pruning and olive harvesting tools.

For more information on Campagnola products you can consult the online catalogue, watch the video section on new products and the correct maintenance of tools, use the contact section of this website, or contact the official network of local dealers, where you can view and purchase tools, accessories and spare parts.

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