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what is the difference between a tree surgeon and an arborist

Tree Surgeons vs. Arborists: What’s the Difference?

Maintaining the trees in your garden is crucial for their health, beauty, and safety. Overgrown trees can be dangerous for the surrounding property and people, so it is necessary to hire professionals to carry out this task. However, when you start looking for experts in this field, you will come across two terms: arborist and tree surgeon. It can be confusing to understand the difference between the two, so in this blog, we will compare and contrast arborists and tree surgeons, what they do, and who to call for your garden/tree.

What is an Arborist?

An arborist is a professional who specializes in the care of trees. They are trained to diagnose and treat diseases, pests, and other issues that affect trees. Arborists also have expertise in planting, pruning, and maintaining trees to ensure their health and longevity.

To become an arborist, one must undergo extensive training and certification. They must have knowledge of tree biology, soil science, pest management, pruning techniques, safety procedures, and more. Many arborists also specialize in specific areas such as urban forestry or tree risk assessment.

What Do Arborists Do?

Arborists offer a wide range of services that include:

  1. Tree planting: Arborists can help you choose the right type of tree for your garden, and plant it in the right place. They can also provide guidance on how to care for the newly planted tree.
  2. Tree pruning: Pruning is the process of removing dead or overgrown branches from a tree. Arborists can prune your tree to improve its shape, structure, and health. They can also remove hazardous branches that may be a threat to people or property.
  3. Tree removal: Sometimes, a tree may need to be removed for safety reasons, or because it is dead or dying. Arborists can remove the tree safely and efficiently, without damaging the surrounding property.
  4. Tree health care: Arborists can diagnose and treat diseases and pests that may be affecting your tree. They can also fertilize your tree to promote healthy growth.
  5. Tree risk assessment: Arborists can assess the risk that a tree poses to people and property. They can identify potential hazards, and recommend measures to reduce the risk.

To become an arborist, one must obtain certification from a professional association such as the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). This involves passing a rigorous exam that tests knowledge of tree biology, pruning techniques, safety procedures, and more

What is a Tree Surgeon?

A tree surgeon is another professional who works with trees but has a different set of skills than an arborist. A tree surgeon specializes in physically removing trees or parts of trees that pose a hazard or obstruction. They use specialized equipment such as chainsaws and cranes to safely remove branches or entire trees.

Tree surgeons may also be called upon to perform emergency work such as removing fallen trees after a storm or clearing branches from power lines. They work closely with utility companies to ensure that power lines are not obstructed by overhanging branches.

While some tree surgeons may have knowledge of tree biology and care techniques, their primary focus is on removing hazardous or unwanted trees rather than maintaining them.

What Do Tree Surgeons Do?

Tree surgeons offer a wide range of services that include:

  1. Tree pruning: Tree surgeons can prune your tree to improve its shape, structure, and health. They can also remove hazardous branches that may be a threat to people or property.
  2. Tree removal: Tree surgeons can safely and efficiently remove trees that are dead, dying, or pose a risk to people or property. They use specialized equipment and techniques to ensure that the tree is removed without damaging the surrounding property.
  3. Stump removal: After a tree has been removed, there is often a stump left behind. Tree surgeons can remove the stump using a stump grinder, which grinds the stump into small pieces that can be used as mulch.
  4. Tree planting: Tree surgeons can help you choose the right type of tree for your garden, and plant it in the right place. They can also provide guidance on how to care for the newly planted tree.

Unlike arborists, there is no formal certification process for becoming a tree surgeon. However, many reputable companies will have qualifications such as City & Guilds NPTC Level 2 Award in Chainsaw Maintenance & Cross-cutting.

what is the difference between a tree surgeon and an arborist

Key Differences Between an Arborist and a Tree Surgeon

The key difference between an arborist and a tree surgeon lies in their areas of expertise. Arborists specialize in the care of trees while tree surgeons focus on their physical removal.

Arborists are trained to diagnose problems affecting trees such as disease or pest infestations. They can recommend treatments such as pruning or fertilization to improve the health of your trees. Tree surgeons do not typically diagnose problems but instead focus on removing hazardous or unwanted parts of the tree.

Another key difference between these two professions is their equipment. Arborists use specialized tools such as pruning shears or climbing gear while working on live trees whereas tree surgeons use heavy-duty equipment like chainsaws for cutting down large sections of wood.

Who Should You Call for Your Trees?

If you have concerns about the health of your trees or need help maintaining them over time, you should call an arborist. An arborist can assess your trees’ overall health and recommend treatments that will keep them healthy for years to come.

On the other hand, if you need a hazardous branch removed from your property or want an entire tree removed, then it’s best to call a tree surgeon. A qualified surgeon will be able to safely remove any unwanted parts without causing damage to surrounding structures.

It’s important to note that both professions require specialized training and certification so it’s important to choose someone who has experience in their field before hiring them for any work on your property.

In short

Call an arborist if…

  • You want to maintain healthy trees
  • You need advice on which species of tree would work best in your garden
  • You have concerns about the safety or health of one or more of your trees

Call a tree surgeon if…

  • You need to remove one or more trees from your garden
  • You have stumps that need grinding down
  • There has been damage caused by storms

Last Thoughts

While both professions work with trees day-to-day there are clear distinctions between what they do. We hope this blog post has helped clarify those differences so that you know who to call when it comes time to take care of your own garden’s needs.

Whether it’s an emergency situation like storm damage causing havoc amongst your greenery or simply wanting expert advice on how best to care for specific plants; Clyde Tree Surgeons has got everything covered!

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