Working with Weed trimmers and Weed whackers

Weed trimmers and weed whackers can do a lot of different things around your yard and garden: They can cut grass (especially in tricky, hard-to-reach spots like under a fence and along edges and borders) and trim weeds and light brush (for info on lawn care, check out Chapter 10).

These useful tools come in different sizes and varying rates of power. They also come in three forms:

i Gas-powered: Noisy but effective and portable; they tend to be heavier than other types, but weight can vary a great deal depending on the power of the unit i Corded electric: Less powerful, but not as loud and may be just fine for your needs; your extension cord may limit where you can go i Battery-operated: The quietest and least powerful (running out of juice after around 30 minutes) but very portable t^NG/

The less-expensive string trimmers employ a rapidly spinning nylon string that does the cutting but wears away slightly as you work (as more string is fed out), so be sure to keep a backup supply or backup coil on hand. Fancier trimmers have a two-line system that reduces cutting time. Superior, usually gas-powered models use fixed plastic blades.

Be careful about operating these tools near trees, because they can bite into the trunk, making a wound that not only looks bad but may contribute to the tree's decline (especially if it's a small, skinny tree).

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