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Understanding the Difference Between a Commerical Arborist and a Consulting Arborist

January 23, 2009

Guest Blogger Katy Bigelow offers us a better understanding of various kinds of tree care professionals:

Consulting Arborist, Katy, at Work

Consulting Arborist, Katy, at Work

Proper tree care is an investment that can lead to substantial returns. Well managed trees are attractive and can add considerable value to your property. Poorly maintained trees can be a significant liability. You might be starting to see why the decision to hire a tree care company should not be taken lightly.

An arborist by definition is an individual who is trained in the art and science of planting, caring for, and maintaining individual trees. Certified arborists have achieved a level of knowledge in the area and science of tree care through at least three years experience and have passed a comprehensive examination developed by some of the nation?s leading tree care experts. They must continue their education to maintain their certification.

There is a difference between a ?commercial arborist? and a ?consulting arborist?. Most commercial tree care companies provide a wide range of arboriculture services such as tree pruning, removal, fertilization, problem diagnosis, and other tree care tasks. Most consulting arborists provide a wide range of consulting arboriculture services, such as hazard tree assessment, tree appraisal, expert witness testimony, problem diagnosis, management plan recommendations, and other consulting tasks.

Commercial Arborist Removing Tree

Commercial Arborist Removing Tree

The main difference between the two is that a consulting arborist will spend typically more time on a tree or site assessment, may perform diagnostic testing, and go into much greater detail than a commercial arborist, who specializes in the physical care of your trees. The consultant’s product is usually a report of findings and recommendations, whereas the product of a commercial arborist is the pruning, removal, cabling or other treatment performed for a tree.

If you have tree concerns think about why it may be valuable to hire someone to talk about the problems they see without having a vested interest in getting you to pay for the services. While some consultants are affiliated with a tree care service, most are not. Here on Bainbridge Island and outside of large cities it may be hard to find a consultant who is not affiliated with a tree care company but it?s worth your time to investigate.

You can find out more information about consulting arborists by visiting the American Society of Consulting Arborists or the Pacific Northwest chapter of the ISA.

4 Comments

  1. rhaglund says:

    Thanks for submitting this Katy. I know my clients will appreciate the differentiation!

  2. […] Understanding the Difference Between a Commerical Arborist and a … […]

  3. […] Not sure whether you need a consulting arborist or a commercial arborist? Read Certified Arborist and Guest Blogger Katy’s article on the subject here. […]

  4. […] Not sure whether you need a consulting arborist or a commercial arborist? Read Certified Arborist and Guest Blogger Katy’s article on the subject here. […]

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