Can You Use Pruning Saw To Cut Roots In Dirt?

Gardening and landscaping are all about keeping plants and trees healthy. The roots of trees and shrubs can often penetrate the soil and disturb nearby plants and structures as they grow. If you’re wondering if you can use a pruning saw to cut roots in dirt, you’re in the right place.

Let’s take a closer look at Can You Use Pruning Saw To Cut Roots In Dirt and the best methods for cutting roots in the dirt. There’s no doubt that pruning saws are helpful, but you’ve got to choose the right one and use it properly.

Can You Use Pruning Saw To Cut Roots In Dirt

Usually, pruning saws are for trimming branches or pruning shrubs, but some can also cut roots. It’s best to use a folding saw because it’s the most versatile and can be cut through wood and roots.

Make sure the blade is sharp before cutting roots with a pruning saw. It’s important to have a sharp blade for good cuts, but it’s also important for safety. Second, look for debris or other objects in the soil that might cause the saw to stop mid-cut. This will help prevent damage to the saw, the plant, or yourself.

When you’re ready to cut the roots, wear gloves, glasses, and long pants. Once you’ve dug out as much soil as possible, use your pruning saw to cut through the root carefully. Ensure the saw isn’t damaged by twisting or wiggling back and forth while cutting the roots.

Although pruning saws are great for cutting roots in dirt, they also have limitations. They should never be used to cut large roots critical to the plant’s health and stability. Instead, they should be used for cutting smaller roots, usually around one to two inches in diameter. Professional arborists or tree surgeons are best in the latter case.

What Tool Do You Use To Cut Through Dirt?

Garden Hoe

The first thing you need is a garden hoe. The hoe is one of the oldest tools, dating back thousands of years. It works by pulling soil towards the user, which is great for breaking up lumps of dirt or cutting through packed soil. You can use garden hoes to clear weeds and create seed furrows too.

There are many garden hoes, like draw, scuffle, and loop hoes. You need to choose the right one for your needs since each type has its cutting edge and is designed for a specific purpose.

Digging Shovel

Second, there’s the digging shovel. In addition to digging holes and moving dirt, digging shovels can cut through dirt. Digging shovels usually have sharp, pointed blades perfect for breaking up clumps and cutting into hard soil. If you’re working with deeper roots, it might come in handy. You can also move a lot of loose soil with these shovels. If you want maximum precision and comfort, go for a D-handle.


The third thing we have is the trowel. Despite their small size, trowels are incredibly versatile and useful for cutting through dirt. You can use a trowel to dig small holes for seedlings or plants, prepare the soil for planting, weed small areas, and more.

They come in various shapes and sizes depending on what they’re for. Wider trowels will hold more soil, and narrower trowels will provide more precision.

Pruning Shears

You can also cut through dirt with pruning shears called hand pruners or secateurs. While they’re not typically used for this, they’re handy when you’re planting small plants and need to make precise cuts in the soil. Their sharp blade slices through the soil easily, perfect for cutting through tangled roots. Pruning shears come in bypass and anvil designs, each with a different cutting edge.

Garden Fork

The last thing you’ll need is a garden fork to loosen up compacted soil. By lifting and aerating soil as it cuts, the fork’s long, curved fingers make it easy to work. Through the tines of the fork, they break up rocks in rockier soil. Make sure it has sturdy tines that can handle turning over hard, compacted soil.

Bottom Line:

Overall, pruning saws can be used to cut roots in dirt, but it’s important to choose the right type and use it safely. Ensure the blade is sharp, the soil is clean before cutting, and wear protective gear. Pruning saws also have limitations, like not cutting large roots or ones critical to the plant’s health. With these tips, you can take care of your trees and garden safely and effectively without causing any damage.