An arborist, tree surgeon, or arboriculturist, is a professional in the practice of arboriculture, which is the cultivation, management, and study of individual trees, shrubs, vines, and other perennial woody plants in dendrology and horticulture.
Arborists generally focus on the health and safety of individual plants and trees, rather than on managing forests or harvesting wood (forestry or silviculture). An arborist’s scope of work is therefore distinct from that of either a forest or a logger.
Arborists gain qualifications to practice arboriculture in a variety of ways and some arborists are more qualified than others. Experience working safely and effectively in and around trees is essential. Arborists tend to specialize in one or more disciplines of arboriculture, such as diagnosis and treatment of pests, diseases, and nutritional deficiencies in trees, climbing and pruning, cabling and lightning protection, or perhaps consultation and report writing. All these disciplines are related and some arborists are very well experienced in all areas of tree work, but not all arborists have the training or experience to properly practice every discipline.
Arborists choose to pursue formal certification, which is available in some countries and varies somewhat by location. An arborist who holds certification in one or more disciplines may be expected to participate in rigorous continuing education requirements to ensure continuous improvement of skills and techniques.
What does an arborist do?
Arborist performs a combination of scientific and landscaping duties to keep trees healthy. They take samples from trees and soil to diagnose any issues, then, treat problems with pesticides or pruning. Arborists primarily work outdoors and must have the physical strength and stamina to safely remove large tree limbs. They use teamwork and problem-solving skills to carry out large-scale projects and anticipate how tree growth could impact the surrounding area.
Arborists use ropes and harnesses to climb into the upper limbs-or canopy- of tree to trim branches and guide the growth of the tree. They assess how much to remove to suit a client’s needs without killing the tree. They may also completely remove a tree if it has a disease that risks the health of nearby plants or poses a safety risk to nearby structures. Other arborist duties include:
- Planting trees
- Assessing soil conditions
- Developing a landscaping plan
- Cleaning up debris
- Performing turf management
- Inspecting equipment
- Recording tree maintenance activities
- Instructing landscaper and groundskeeper
- Building an inventory of trees and mapping their location
Salary of an arborist:
Arborists make an average of 76,723 dollars per year. An arborist’s salary depends on their experience level, employer, and the geographic area where they work. Many arborists own their own landscaping companies and are acting as consultants. For the most up-to-date salary information from indeed, click on the salary link.
According to the U.S Bureau of Labor statics (BLS), arborists fall under the broader category of conservation scientists and foresters. The BLS predicts employment in the field will grow by 7% by 2030. About 4000 openings for conversation scientists, foresters, and arborists are projected each year, on average, over the decade.
What to look for in an arborist:
If you need someone to prune, remove or otherwise take care of your trees, make sure to work with a certified arborist. It’s important to hire someone who’s qualified for the specific type of work that arborists perform. Trusting the jobs to someone whos unqualified could result in damage to your property. Here is what to look for when hiring an arborist.
The first thing you should do is check for certifications. Specifically, you should determine if the contractor you might hire is a member of the international society of arboriculture (ISA).
In order to be certified by the organization, arborists must pass the ISA examination of tree care and maintenance. The certification is therefore a testament to the contractors, comprehensive knowledge about trees and what practices are best to use when caring for them. Additionally, ISA-certified arborist adheres to the ISA code of ethics, which serves as a promise for safe, trustworthy, and high–quality service.
Reviews from past clients are another indicator of whether you should hire an arborist. You can search for testimonials online to get an idea of what peoples an experience’s with a specific arborist was like. It’s also a good idea to ask the arborist for references from previous clients. Make sure to call a few of them and ask questions about the nature of the work performed. Determine if they are happy with the results.
It’s important to make sure you aren’t being overcharged. That being said, you don’t necessarily want to hire the arborist with the cheapest rate. Arborists have a number of expenses’, and an especially low cost may be a sign of poor service or lack of insurance. Make sure to ask several arborists for estimates so you can compare them.
Proper pruning practices:
Make sure to hire an arborist who knows what they are doing. For example, some arborists will use spikes to climb trees, which can be detrimental to the tree’s health and structural integrity. Other arborists may go overboard with pruning. Typically, arborists recommend a few different options for how to go about pruning a tree, so it’s a red flag if they jump straight to suggesting something extreme, such as topping the tree.
The certified arborist credentials identify professional arborists who have a minimum of three years’ time experience working in the professional tree care industry and who have passed an examination covering facets of arboriculture.
Board-certified master arborist certification requires the applicant first to become an ISA certified arborist, as well as meet a number of prerequisites set forth by the ISA. A person seeking this kind of certification must be well-rounded and knowledgeable of the science of trees and their diseases, the safe handling, and control of them, as well as business management and corporate relations. As with all other arborist certifications, there are exams that must be passed, and arborist certification study guides are available through the ISA.
To answer the question, is it worth being an arborist? Absolutely yes think about it you get to spend most of your day outdoors in nature, climbing trees, cutting them down, shaping them beautifully, and nurturing them. In a nutshell, you can earn more than sufficient wage, to do what you used to love when you were a child: climb trees. They get paid well, and they have fun but do not underestimate the hard work that goes into pursuing this career. And be sure to check out Katherine Times for more great articles.