Congratulations to Scott Rushing for obtaining the ISA Tree Risk Assessment Qualification. We are now able to offer official Tree Risk Assessments to our customers.
1. What is a Tree Risk Assessment?
A tree risk assessment, in short, is a process used to determine the overall risk that a tree, or its parts, poses to potential targets (people, vehicles, buildings, other things of value or importance). All trees pose a potential risk of some level, but that doesn’t mean that every tree should be removed. Most trees risk levels are very low and often don’t need any immediate attention to eliminate risk. A tree risk assessment is used to determine which trees pose a threat by having a high likelihood of failure within a specified time frame.
2. Why is it important to have a Tree Risk Assessment done?
Preventative care is often the best course of action when dealing with trees in the urban landscape. As home owners or property managers, you can identify when trees have obvious defects or when they have completely died easily. As an International Society Arboriculture certified arborist with tree risk assessment qualifications, Classic City Arborists can identify the indicators of potential tree failure that would often go unnoticed. By scheduling tree risk assessments once every 8 to 12 months you can greatly reduce the likelihood of property damage or personal injury due to whole tree or tree part failures.
3. What’s the difference between an estimate and an assessment?
When we are called for an estimate, which is usually free of charge, the property owner/manager already has a list of items that they want pricing on. For example: Remove this tree… Raise this canopy… Grind this stump
In an assessment, the arborist must evaluate all trees on the property for potential risks which often takes much more time and requires more thorough examination on each tree. After assessing trees for risks, a report is written and mitigation options along with pricing are listed.
4. What will the assessment cost?
The most commonly asked questions in the tree care industry are what is wrong with my tree and how much is it going to cost me? As a home owner we understand that you want to retain as much money as possible while also maintaining a certain level of safety. At Classic City Arborists, we strive to serve our customers by being knowledgeable and professional regarding the services that we provide. Having said that, we must charge for our time in the field assessing trees for risk. In most cases we charge 100.00 per hour for tree risk assessments or a 75.00 dollar minimum charge.
The oak trees shown here would usually be a beautiful part of the back yard landscape for this client, but instead they have been choked out by the ivy and are in decline. The client wants to remove the trees instead of cutting the ivy off in this case. Normally, this would be a straightforward removal but in this case the majority of the ivy needs to be removed before the tree can be safely taken down. (Ivy needs to be removed enough to where the Arborist can inspect the tree for any defects that could cause the tree to fail during removal)
In short, between extra time needed for removal and extra time spent cleaning up debris (ivy) this tree can cost 1.5 to 2 times more than the normal market price to remove. Don't let ivy overtake your landscape!
Most people don't realize how damaging ivy can be to a tree.
- it can potentially choke out the canopy of a tree, causing it to partially or completely die back
- it adds hundreds of pounds of extra weight to a tree, which could cause an otherwise healthy tree to fail in extreme weather conditions
- it can hide mechanical defects that exist on a tree such as cavities or areas of decay
- it can make a tree much more costly to remove
How can you effectively manage ivy on your property?
- Prune ivy around the base of each tree that has ivy growing on it
- Be sure not to damage the bark of the tree when cutting the ivy off
- Don't use a chopping style tool, like an axe or machete, to remove the ivy, instead use a hand saw.
- You only have to cut away ivy on the lower 4 to 5 feet of the trunk, the rest will die and fall off over time
- Ivy may try to grow back up the trunk later, but it should be easy to prevent if you add "ivy prevention and pruning" to your yard maintenance plan once or twice a year.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact us.
Scott - 706-340-9370
Rebekah - 706-614-6782
Our customers often offer reassurances about where we drop trees in their yard. We’ve been told things like: “That fence is really old and we are going to replace it. If you hit it, it’s no big deal.” But for us, it is a big deal. We understand that our customers are trying to help make our job easier for us, and we appreciate the thought. However, dropping a tree onto anything but the ground, whether on purpose or by accident, is unprofessional and something we try to avoid at all costs.
At Classic City Arborists, we are dedicated to the protection, not only of the customer and surrounding property, but also of the environment. When we plan the removal of a tree, we meticulously evaluate the immediate area, and determine the best location for dropping the tree or limbs where there will be the least amount of impact to existing wildlife and property. Then we carefully execute those plans utilizing our skills as certified arborists.
In addition, we have to consider other potential customers. While a customer may have allowed us to drop a limb onto their fence, another customer driving past may see the limb on the fence and wonder just what kind of experts we really are. We want to present a professional image to our customers, because we are professionals doing a professional job. We have taken classes and passed the test to be considered an ISA Certified Arborist. Every year, we are required to collect continuing education classes to maintain that certification, and to keep our knowledge and skills up to date.
We want this hard work and dedication to our field to shine through with every job that we complete. Once we leave a job site, you shouldn’t be able to tell we were even there – besides the tree we were hired to remove.
Classic City Arborists is proud to now offer stump grinding services. This is accomplished by means of a disc attachment to our miniature Skid Steer that rotates at high speeds to grind the stump into small chips. All that will be left in the stump’s place, is a pile of small wood chips. This process can take anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour depending on the size of the stump.
Remaining stumps in a yard can be an eyesore for the meticulous landscaper. Even an amateur landscaper will have difficulty navigating the lawn mower around the hidden stumps. While that stump may not be considered a blemish in the yard, it can still be a safety hazard. Small children and pets could trip and harm themselves revealing a hidden liability.
Removing decaying stumps from the yard will also reduce the amount of insects in the area. These pests feed off the opening left from the tree removal, and then work their way into the healthy trees, plants, and ornamental décor surrounding the leftover stump. The best way to reduce the possibility of additional pest destruction, is to remove stumps.
Leftover stumps can also sprout multiple new trees from the roots. When a pesky Sweet Gum tree is removed to eliminate all the Sweet Gum Balls on the ground, if the stump remains, it can quickly sprout multiple new Sweet Gum Trees that will swiftly grow to release their own little hazards all over the yard. Practice self-pruning in a yard by removing the stumps to limit which trees grow back.
Our stump grinding service is offered both on its own and also added to any tree removal service. Call today for a free estimate.
Back in December of 2015, I gave an estimate to a client for removing a sweetgum tree that had been dead for at least six months and it was evident that it was hollow at the base. The tree itself was not very large, but did stand about 80 feet tall with a 16 inch base and could still pose a threat to people and property due to the fact that. It was located within 5 feet of the driveway and 15 feet of the home.
Some time had passed and I figured that the homeowner had found someone else to do the job for them. To my surprise, I received an email in April asking if my price would still be honored for removing the tree. I replied to the email stating that I would indeed honor the price given during the estimate as long as there were no distinct changes in the tree or job details.
On May 4th, 2016, I arrived to remove the sweetgum tree. After evaluating the tree again, I decided that I could still remove the tree for the agreed upon price.Below are some picture of the tree before removal and during removal. I will discuss the photos in detail to better describe the process of removal and describe the importance of removing dead trees as soon as they are noticed.
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In short, It is of the utmost importance for safety of people, pets and property to remove dead trees as soon as they are identified. Even though we took precautions to account for the tree breaking as we removed it, sometimes accidents still happen. It is hard to predict what might happen as compounding forces act on a dead tree. If this tree had been taken out even a few months later, or not at all, it could have caused major harm to person or property. On the contrary, if the tree had been taken down in December, it might not have broken at all during removal.
If you have identified dead or dying trees on your property, please have a certified arborist give you an estimate for removal and schedule the removal in due time. It's safer for you and the workers removing the tree and it could also save you money!
-Scott Rushing, Owner, Classic City Arborists
If you need help identifying dead or dying trees please feel free to give
Classic City Arborists a call for a free consultation. 706-614-6782
When should a Tree Risk Assessment performed on your property? There are multiple factors to consider when assessing the “safety” of a tree.