June 13, 2017 | Frank MacDonald |

Think You Have an Unsolvable Hazard? See What We Did with Devil’s Club…

If you’re a landscaper, you already know the number of challenges you face every day.


If you’re not a landscaper, think about it this way:


  • Pretty much everything has a sharp blade attached to it — many of those blades are motorized
  • There’s lots of chemical handling and spraying.
  • You’re lifting heavy things. Repeatedly.
  • And doing all of this under a sun that is trying to bake you alive.


The cool thing about making safety products is that sometimes a glove designed with one industry in mind, works perfect for another industry.


This is a customer success story about that very circumstance.

The glove being featured today is the Clutch Gear® Hi-Viz Punkban™-Lined Mechanics Glove.


Clutch Gear® Hi-Viz Mechanics Glove Fully Lined with Punkban™ Product ID: MXHV2PB
get my sample button

It was originally designed to protect hospital staff who were finding uncapped hypodermic needles.

But in Wasilla, Alaska, the glove has been used to prevent punctures from a shrub called Devil’s club.


The Challenge:

Devil’s club is used by Native American communities as a traditional medicine for ailments like arthritis or diabetes.

As the name suggests, Devil’s club is a diabolical weed for people, like Ted, in the landscaping industry.

The shrub can be up to 5 feet tall and its woody stems are covered in thorns.

devil's club thorns

The most effective way to keep Devil’s club from reappearing is to pull the plant out by its roots.


“You basically grab the stem down low and bend it around your hand to get enough grip to pull it out,” Ted said.

Some of the thorns that embed in Ted’s hand would require medical treatment to be removed.

“I had to go to the doctor, who had to send me to a hand specialist to get it out” he said. “Two doctors’ visits later and I was finally able to get the thorn out of my hand.”

devil's club thorns in hand

“Every other glove Ted tried had not protected the sides or back of the hand. This photo shows some of the thorns embedded in his skin.”

One of Ted’s clients has two acres of property covered in Devil’s club and is also the owner of a large, furry dog. After going out for walks, the dog would return covered in the tiny spines.

Not only would the owner have to remove pieces of the shrub from the dog’s fur, but thorns would fall off the dog and into the carpet, only to be discovered by bare feet later on.


The Solution:

After researching options online, Ted contacted our business development department and explained his problem.

One of our hand safety specialists suggested the Clutch Gear® Hi-Viz Mechanics Glove Fully Lined with Punkban™.

Punkban™ is made by spinning and weaving Kevlar® in a unique way to create a layer that’s resistant to hypodermic needles but doesn’t impede hand movement.

Ted knew immediately that this glove would be the perfect solution, saying “every other glove I tried would fail within the first few minutes,” leaving Ted’s hands covered in thorns.

Ted spent half an hour pulling Devil’s club wearing our Clutch Gear® glove lined with Punkban™ without a single thorn penetrating his skin.

This solutions kept his client happy, her dog free to explore the yard and his hands safe from Devil’s club thorns.
Clutch Gear® Hi-Viz Mechanics Glove Fully Lined with Punkban™ Product ID: MXHV2PB

“Thorns that ordinarily would be embedded in Ted’s skin.”


Discover more landscaping gloves here.


Frank MacDonald
About Frank MacDonald