Clearing the Way for the new year
Updated: Jan 21
A tree's crowning glory is actually serious business.
Trees need proper maintenance of their crowns and they can get upset if they get an improper trim from someone who is not qualified to do so. In fact, if a tree gets badly pruned it can even die.
Social Distancing in the Canopies
Pruning is a typical tree maintenance process but it is not as simple as taking out your garden shears and cutting off any bits that look out of place. In nature, trees take care of their own needs and as arborists, we do not go into the forest by the truckload to give them their annual trim.
In fact, Nature is so intelligent, trees have an in-built system to help them respect each other's "space". You may have heard of a phenomenon called "crown shyness", where each tree has its full crown growing but they do not get entangled with one another's crowns. It is actually the trees' way of keeping healthy. It allows more light to get in and it prevents diseases from spreading easily.
We love what Meg Lowman, forest canopy biologist and director of the TREE Foundation says about this phenomenon,
Wise advice from the trees, especially pertinent whenever we encounter challenging times for the need to social distance.
For the trees that we have on our property though, they do need special care. What we want to emphasise is pruning is not just about looking good. It also affects the structure of the tree and that is vital to the health of the tree. Pruning improperly could result in a tree growing at an awkward angle and that is a lot of structural stress on the tree. It could end up being a costly incident for the owner, where you have to spend even more money trying to salvage the tree or pay for renovations because the tree has caused damage to its surrounding structure. Pruning should be done by someone who understands trees inside out.
Safety in Pruning
At Accomplished Tree Management, while we focus on taking care of trees, there is actually another reason for our services. As professional arborists, we have been properly trained and certified to carry out the different procedures and we also have the appropriate machinery and equipment to do our work. The work of maintaining trees has its dangerous parts and that is why we did the necessary training to ensure we know what we are doing and how to do it safely. Tree maintenance is a complicated procedure that is not for anyone.
Even someone who has a small bonsai plant in the living room needs knowledge and practice (and perhaps a few unfortunate bonsais that had to be sacrificed in the process) to be able to prune the small tree correctly.
Pruning large trees is actually a dangerous task. You need special machinery and tools and know-how to use them safely. Read our blog here about what an arborist's job is really like and why it is wiser to depend on a professional arborist to cater to your trees' maintenance needs.
When arborists offer their services, it is not just the trees they are looking after, it is also the property and home owners they are doing the work for because arborists have the experience and knowledge to do so safely.
Something people may not be aware of is you may need approvals from the council if you want to do some sort of work on your tree, and that includes pruning. Read our blog here to learn more about how trees have the law on their side to look after their well-being and ensure people do not randomly prune or remove trees.
Our ecosystem has its delicate side and one element missing can cause an imbalance. It is important to check with professionals before doing work on the trees on your property. They will be able to better advise you on what permits you need to apply for before they can even start working on your property.
Reasons to Prune
So why prune if it sounds like so much hassle?
Pruning is part of good healthy habits for trees, not unlike how you go to a dentist to remove cavities or trim your moustache to give it a more elegant shape.
Pruning has the following advantages:
Get rid of dead, weak, or diseased branches
Improve the shape of the tree
Reduce the risk of falling branches
Allow more light and air into the area under the tree
Correcting a tree's "posture"
Clear the way below the tree for any artificial construction (e.g. so vehicles can see clearly the road ahead)
At Accomplished Tree Management, pruning is one of the tree services we provide. All the services we provide aim to maintain the optimum health of trees and to minimise the need for an extreme measure like removing a tree completely. While we aim to extend the life expectancy of trees, we also want it to be a life that is good, useful and a happy one for the trees.
Before we jump into a pruning process, we speak to our clients and listen to what they need and what information they have to share with us about their trees before we decide what is the best thing to do. Our clients are always included in the process and they trust us to give them honest advice about whether it is necessary to perform a service or not.
Recently we did some pruning for a client and it is amazing the clear view we could see when the work was finished.
Besides pruning, Accomplished Tree Management also offers similar services to pruning such as hedging, deadwooding and palm tree maintenance. This is our set of maintenance services, depending on what you have on your property.
A hedge is not something static. It is very much alive and most are simply happy to keep growing. Young hedges need the most attention (they can be rather rebellious!). The early years of a hedge require a lot more care and a lot of patience. You need to know how to perform hedging to encourage thick, healthy growth so that you can have a beautiful set of hedges when the plants mature. If you have mature hedges, the beginning of summer and the beginning of spring are the best moments to give them their maintenance trim.
Deadwooding is the process of removing dead, weak, or diseased limbs from a tree. This is a part of tree hazard management. What we do when we enter a property is to assess the condition of the tree and whether it is necessary to go ahead with the process. An accurate assessment is important because it affects what techniques we decide to implement and when done correctly, it can help prevent limb or even whole tree failure and ensure your trees will continue to thrive for many years to come.
Some of our clients have gorgeous palms and they are also in need of pruning. Palm tree defronding is a service we provide that includes pruning dead and dying palm fronds and even defruiting unripened seed pods. This prevents the palms from looking like they just woke up and are having a bad hair day. Palm trees like being styled and kept neat and tidy.
2020 was a tough period for so many and it is a solemn wake-up call to take care of our environment. There is something we can all do to give back to the planet. Trees help to fight climate change and you do not need to plant an Amazon-sized rainforest to feel like you have done your part. Simply planting trees around your home and property and taking care of them is one important step to making a difference.
We want to leave you with two uplifting points to start planting more trees:
¨Did you know that Australia is one of six countries that holds 50 PER CENT of the world´s tree planting potential, with the tropical east coast of Australia containing the most suitable area of land?¨
¨The world´s six biggest nations, Russia, Canada, China, the US, Brazil and Australia, contain HALF THE POTENTIAL RESTORATION SITES.¨
Australia has weathered one too many natural disasters over the past years, and we need to do what we can to make a change. Tree planting is an antidote to climate change, and we can all make a difference, one tree at a time. Perhaps that could make a unique New Year´s resolution - to plant a tree!
If you are not sure what trees are suitable or permitted on your property, speak to us.
So, how do you want your new year to look like? Let´s clear the way for a healthy and happy year!
About Accomplished Tree Management: Tel 0411 443 535
Accomplished Tree Management is based in Port Macquarie and services the Mid North Coast. With over 16 years of experience, we employ safe work methods and are certified with Australian AS 4373-2007-Pruning of Amenity Trees standards. We're fully insured with $20 million Public Liability and $5 million Professional Indemnity Insurance. We provide the following tree services -
Tree management - tree removals, palm tree services, council permits
Tree and garden maintenance - hedging, pruning, deadwooding, stump grinding
Tree consultation - arboricultural reports, hazard assessment
"Clearing the Way for 2021"is written by Vermilion Pinstripes, a sales marketing and communications agency based in Port Macquarie helping businesses thrive with brand confidence.