4 Reasons to Hire a Certified Arborist

certified arborist

Is your landscaping looking a little rough around the edges? You’re in luck, a certified arborist can help you with a variety of essential tree care services to beautify your yard. These specialists can expertly handle jobs like tree removal and tree pruning, as well as fertilizing, stump grinding and mistletoe removal. They can also safely clear away fallen branches, or diagnose ailing trees and what to do for them. A certified arborist is like the tree whisperer of landscaping professionals.

Read on to learn more about why this profession is so essential. Here are 4 reasons to hire an arborist…

1) The Threat of Injury

Tree pruning for large branches and tree removal are too dangerous for the untrained homeowner to try to manage on their own. While it may not seem that way, trees are denser and heavier than they look, and their branches can cause injuries. On average, over a hundred people die each year due to tree-related fatalities. According to OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the tree care industry is among the top most dangerous industries in America. Your safety is the main reason to call in a specialist who has the proper tools and equipment for the job.

2) Investing in Your Home

Proper tree care is a long-term investment. Beautiful, healthy trees increase the value of your property in the long run. Although, the converse is true as well. Neglected trees can weigh down the value of your home. This is something to consider if you ever plan to list your house on the market. A certified arborist can also help you prevent plumbing issues that are related to overgrown tree roots, which is never a cheap fix.

3) Avoiding Liability Issues

Without proper tree pruning services, your landscaping can become a liability. Trees can drop brittle, dead, or diseased branches at  any time, especially during stormy weather. We already discussed how heavy falling limbs can be. To figure out the exact weight of your trees would require a bit of math, but hardwood trees are always heavier. A lack of expert tree care can result in down limbs that cause injuries or property damage. It’s just not worth the risk. Hiring a certified arborist is the best way to ensure that your trees aren’t a hidden safety hazard.

4) Professional Tree Care

It’s also important to hire a pro to make sure that your trees get everything they need to thrive. A certified arborist has specialized training and the right tools. Most professionals also work with a team of skilled experts.

Anyone can offer tree pruning services, but only a licensed arborist has the necessary depth of knowledge to provide tree care. Unfortunately, someone with less experience may unintentionally harm your trees. This is another reason why it’s so important to consult with a local arborist when you need tree services for your property.

Criteria for Hiring a Certified Arborist

And finally, be sure to hire an arborist who is also insured, otherwise you’re liable for damages if any accidents occur during the tree service.

To speak with an  ISA Certified Arborist, please contact us at Sexy Trees. Give us a call at 925-233-6877 to schedule an appointment. If you aren’t quite sure which tree services you need, we’re always happy to answer questions.

A Quick Guide to Spring Tree Pruning

Certified Arborist

Despite what Punxsutawney Phil declared, spring is right around the corner. Soon the flowers will be in bloom, but before you get caught up in the earthy magic of this season, make sure that your plants are ready for the changing weather. Any certified arborist will tell you that pruning is essential tree care for your landscaping, and we are certified arborists, so…

Here’s a quick spring guide to tree pruning to help prepare your yard for the warmer months ahead.

When to Prune

A certified arborist considers several factors when it comes to providing the best tree care. When you prune your tree will depend on a couple of things, like the kinds of trees on your property.

Flowering Trees

First and foremost, if your tree is a flowering tree, such as a ornamental cherry or crabapple, you want to prune after the tree blooms. This is generally in late May or early June, depending on where you live. Waiting a little longer prevents excessive flower bud removal, as flower buds were formed during the previous Autumn.

Tree  pruning can vary among flowering, ornamental trees, as some are more sensitive to branch removal. For example, redbud and flowering dogwood are better pruned in late winter or early spring, around February or March, to prevent excessive bleeding, and to speed wound recovery.

Fruit Trees

On the other hand,  if you’re dealing with a fruit tree, the best time to prune is also late winter or early spring. This will allow enough time for wound healing while helping the tree divert more energy to flower buds, and the formation of fruit, rather than vegetative growth.

Tree Pruning for Other Varieties

For all other trees, late fall to early spring are fine times to prune. It’s easier to see the structure of a tree once it’s lost its leaves for the year. Although, not all  trees shed their foliage. A certified arborist can help you determine the best time for tree pruning in your yard.

How to Prune

While tree pruning may seem like a simple process, certified arborists use certain tools and techniques to ensure proper tree care. First, when cutting the branch, a cut that is slightly sloping down and out from the top to the bottom of the branch ensures that moisture drips off of the cut.

This helps prevent dampness that can lead to fungal or bacterial infections. Likewise, it’s best to prune as close to another branch or the trunk as possible, depending on the size of your cut, so that excessive dead material will not remain. When pruning, it’s also best to remove dead or injured material first, as this can lead to further damage.

A certified arborist may remove branches that rub together, particularly ones that cross through the middle of the tree. This helps prevent damage while improving air flow.

What Tools to Use

The basic tools are a hand pruner, a lopper and a pole saw. Hand pruners are best used for soft wood or small branches less than a 1/2 inch in diameter. Loppers come in various sizes, but are generally sized to cut limbs that are 1.5″ or thinner. For anything bigger, a manual or engine-powered pole saw will get the job done.

Regardless of the tool, a certified arborist will make sure that the blade is sharp to make the cleanest possible cut. They will also wear gloves and protective eye wear, since branches can have a mind of their own.

When cutting infected material, certified arborists will also use alcohol to sanitize the blade after tree pruning in order to prevent infecting other plants.

Talk to a Certified Arborist

At Sexy Trees, we pride ourselves on offering the best tree care possible. We hope the above guide answers some of your questions about spring tree pruning. I you have other questions or feel like this is a messy job you don’t want to tackle on your own, please reach out by calling us at 925-233-6877. You can also read client testimonials by clicking this link.

5 Trees that Butterflies Love

Butterfly gardens are a growing trend in the Bay Area, but what about trees that birds and butterflies love?

Many types of trees that do well in California are sure to attract beautiful wildlife visitors that are fun to watch. Planting a variety of flowering trees is one of the best ways to entice them to your yard. But you don’t have to be a pro at tree care or tree pruning to lure in brightly colored birds and butterflies.

Here are the 5 best trees for attracting wildlife, and boosting your home’s curb appeal…

1) Oak Trees

The humble oak tree can host a wide variety of butterfly species, and this tree does well in many different regions. Various species of hairstreak butterfly are particularly drawn to oaks, as well as duskywings. Another bonus is that there are about 450 different types of oak tree, 20 of which are native to California. We are even seeing hybrid species. Although, valley oak, interior live oak, and the blue oak are most common in the Bay Area.

2) Sweetbay Magnolias

The lightly lemon-scented white flowers of the sweetbay magnolia attract a variety of species, including the tiger and zebra swallowtail. Those who enjoy tree pruning a few blossoms will love having this tree near a patio for shade. Watch the beautiful butterflies that flock to it, while sipping on a summer beverage. These trees instantly remind most people of the southern states, but they can actually do quite well in California.

3) Elm Trees

The elm is another popular tree that can provide a banquet for hungry butterfly species. These butterflies include (but are not limited to) the question mark butterfly, eastern comma, tawny emperor, and many more.

When properly taken care of with regular tree pruning, elm trees also offer a beautiful lush green setting. Later in the year, elm leaves turn a lovely shade of yellow and gold, a sight that’s common in some of the most visually striking regions of our country—like New England. This is another tree that does surprisingly well in the Bay Area.

Related Content: Common Questions About Tree Pruning

4) Dogwoods

Dogwood trees, especially the pink dogwood has been known to lure in American snouts, white admirals, and banded hairstreaks. It yields delicate pink blooms in the spring, and shiny red berries that ripen by fall. These berries aren’t considered toxic, but it’s not a good idea to eat them, as people have reported rashes. This is also a great tree for beginning arborists.

5) Cherry Trees

Cherry trees have more to offer than their stunning beauty. Their fruit is wildly popular, and they also attract many species of butterflies that love to spend time in their fragrant flowers.

Cherry trees can do well across much of North America. They tend to entice American snouts, red spotted purples, viceroys, hummingbird clearwings, spring azures, and white admirals, along with many others. It’s easy to see why butterfly lovers often find the cherry tree to be a classical favorite.

Related Content: Tree Care for Sexy Trees in 2021

Tree Pruning & Other Tree Care

Try one or several of these trees in your yard to begin attracting more butterflies this season. Again, you don’t need to have a background in tree pruning or professional tree care to successfully grow these beauties, but it does help to schedule regular appointments with an arborist. You can also buy trees at any stage of growth to suit your needs.

For help with tree pruning, or general tree care in the Bay Area, contact us today. Our team is here to answer all of your questions. Just call 925-233-6877 to speak with a professional arborist.

 

Tree Care for Sexy Trees in 2021

tree care

Trees provide many benefits, but only when properly taken care of. You need to regularly tend to your trees if you want to enjoy the beauty and shade they add to your property. Although you can always call a certified arborist for professional tree care, knowing the basics is helpful. Do you want sexy trees in 2021? Keep reading…

Proper Planting

Choose an appropriate place for your trees and consider possible future changes. Have you always wanted to build a room addition? That’s not a good place for your new tree. Also, keep in mind how large the tree will get, and whether or not it will have enough sunlight. Make sure there won’t be a structure that blocks the light. Your tree shouldn’t be close to power lines, sewer lines, or other underground systems. Some types of trees can even  disturb pipes with their roots if they’re planted too close to the house.

Protecting the Roots

When selecting which trees to plant, it’s important to consider the best weather conditions for a species to thrive. You also need to understand how seasonal changes could affect the tree, depending on where you live. A layer of mulch helps protect the tree’s roots by locking in moisture and evening out the soil temperature. This is easy tree care for both summer and winter fluctuations.

Pruning

Pruning should always be done right to avoid damaging your trees. Bear in mind, too much pruning can be just as harmful as none at all. The goal is to help the tree grow strong and healthy. But incorrect practices can leave your tree vulnerable to insect infestations and other issues. Cuts should be clean, not jagged, so they heal properly.

Watering

Like other living things, trees need water to survive. Rain is usually not enough to keep your trees in good health. A little extra tree care is in order. Your watering routine will depend on the season, as well as the species of trees in your yard. For instance, you’ll likely need to increase the frequency during summer, and maybe even soak the roots once in a while. You probably won’t have to water your trees during the winter, especially if they’ve already matured.

Related Content: Your Tree Watering Guide

Mulching

Another great tree care method is mulching. Some of the benefits were already mentioned above. It can keep weeds and grass from growing around the base of the tree, too. Start mulching at least five inches from the base and go out as far as you like. Never cover the base of the tree with mulch. You can build up to four inches deep, using natural wood chips or bark. You’ll prevent the tree from drying out and may even avoid accidental snips when you’re mowing the lawn.

Related Content: The Magic of Mulch

Professional Tree Care

Rely on our experienced Berkeley tree service to help you maintain your tree care. At Sexy Trees, we do all the work so you won’t have to. Call our skilled arborists today at (925) 233-6877 for a free estimate, or email by clicking here.

Tree Arborist vs Tree Surgeon: What’s the Difference?

arborist

Your yard is one of the most important parts of your living space. After all, it’s the first thing visitors see when they arrive at your home. Taking care of your yard is important to maintaining the appearance of your home and its value. If you need help with your trees, you may be wondering if you should hire a tree arborist or a tree surgeon. Although many people think both terms are the same, they aren’t, so homeowners should understand the difference in order to make the right choice.

Certified Tree Arborist

Arborists complete a formal program and testing in order to become certified in their field. This precedent was set by The International Society of Arboriculture. But just because someone says they’re an arborist doesn’t mean they’re certified, so it’s important to verify this information.

Of course, a certified arborist can focus on aesthetic services, but they can also identify any disease on the tree and give you recommendations about treatment. They can care for trees that are damaged by poor environmental conditions, and they’re also qualified to handle professional tree inspections.

Similarly, arborists have a vast knowledge of landscaping and know how to achieve the specific look that you want for your yard. Creating a beautiful yard isn’t about planting a bunch of trees and foliage and expecting them to look good together. An expert arborist will tell you about which trees and plants will thrive in your yard. They will consider the climate and soil type and help you achieve a healthy environment for your trees.

Tree Surgeons

Education is the main distinction between an arborist and a tree surgeon. It might seem like it should be the other way around, but a tree surgeon isn’t actually required to have any particular education or certification. For this reason, you can’t be sure how much knowledge someone offering these kinds of services may have because anyone can say they’re a tree surgeon.

For the most part, tree surgeons are hired to do things like remove trees or stumps. It’s always best if homeowners don’t handle the dangerous equipment these jobs can involve.

Tree Care For You

Do you need to take care of your trees? A trusted and qualified tree arborist can transform your yard and make your house look more beautiful. Contact us at Sexy Trees today by filling out this contact form on our site. It only takes a moment. Or, call us with your questions at 925-438-0805. As always, we’re here to help.

Top Tree Nutrients Over the Summer

Children need nutrients and vitamins to grow into healthy adults. This is common knowledge, but did you realize that trees also have nutritional needs that extend beyond water, air, and light? In fact, trees depend on a combination of macronutrients and micronutrients to thrive. Here’s a look at the tree nutrients your landscaping requires to flourish.

Macronutrients

As the name suggests, macronutrients are substances trees need in higher amounts to survive, grow, and develop. Macro-nutrients include oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, sulfur, and magnesium.

Micronutrients

Trees require 6 other nutrients in trace amounts to fulfill their biological needs. These 6 nutrients are manganese, boron, zinc, copper, molybdenum, and iron.

Top Summertime Nutrients

Just as flowers and fruiting garden plants like tomatoes, trees need a little helping hand when it comes to nutrition. The harsh heat of summer, along with soil deficiencies, can be burdensome to trees. Providing additional nutrients can help them flourish through the warmer months. A general soil test identifies what your soil may be lacking, and what your tree needs most. Let’s take a peek at a few of the most important tree nutrients in the summertime.

Nitrogen

Nitrogen is the most commonly applied tree nutrient. It is essential for healthy cell growth. Actually, it’s an essential nutrient for every biological function of all plants. A tree suffering from low nitrogen levels will have stunted root growth and pale, yellowing leaves.

Phosphorus

Phosphorus is also essential for the healthy growth and development of trees. It’s essential for energy transfer, flowering and fruiting, root development, and healthy seeds.

Potassium

Potassium is one of the crucial tree nutrients. It helps with the regulation of the tree’s carbon dioxide supply. It also greatly improves the tree’s sugar and water use, which is vital for its growth cycles and regular maintenance. Common signs of a potassium deficiency include brown, yellow, scorched, or curled leaves, as well as an impaired fruit or seed production.

Tree Nutrients for Your Yard

Before you decide to fertilize your trees, bear in mind that toxicity is also an issue you want to avoid. We don’t want too much or too little tree nutrients. If you need help finding the right balance, contact us at Sexy Trees. We can be reached at (925) 233-6877, or by email at [email protected]

Common Tree Diseases in the East Bay

Fog, humidity, and wetness can adversely impact the way trees grow, and the Bay Area has all of those elements. Trees are not only prone to weather patterns, but damage can also be caused by pollution and human activity. One of the best things to do to help protect your trees is to regularly look them over.  If you know how to spot the symptoms of tree diseases, you’ll be able to do something about it early on. This article reviews some common tree diseases and East Bay tree care.

 #1: Sooty Mold

This condition is characterized by a black coating on bark and leaves, the presence of aphids, and yellow, curling leaves. Trees are usually affected by this disease during the summer and spring seasons.

The main problem in having trees with sooty mold is that they attract pests, specifically aphids. If the infestation is not quickly taken care of, it will spread to your other trees in a short amount of time.

While this disease probably won’t kill your trees,  it does change their appearance. Mold growth and yellow, curling leaves is definitely a cosmetic issue, but it’s more dangerous for younger trees because it blocks light from reaching their leaves.  So, it’s best to seek East Bay tree care services if you find this mold in your yard.

#2: Coryneum Blight

You can tell a tree is affected by this disease if you see small holes on the leaves, yellowing stems, and browning around the holes. This particular disease targets trees belonging to the family Prunus, which includes almond and stone fruit trees.

Coryneum blight is a fungal disease caused primarily by warm, wet weather. The adverse effects of the disease are worsened by pollutants. It’s dangerous to your trees because it damages leaf tissue. It’s a major problem in the fruit industry.

#3: Fire Blight

If you notice blossoms turning brown, or leaves and stems with a scorched look to them, your trees are probably experiencing fire blight.

The fire blight is a contagious bacterial disease that usually attacks trees during the early spring. Affected trees look burnt, taking 1 to 2 weeks for the full effect to happen.

Even worse, the spreading of the disease is hastened by birds, bees, insects, wind, and rain. Fortunately, fire blight doesn’t affect many types of trees, commonly targeting pear and apple trees.

East Bay Tree Care for Your Home

While some tree diseases are generally harmless, it’s still best to have them inspected and cared for by a professional. If you need East Bay tree care services, our team of certified arborists is here to help. Contact Sexy Trees at (925) 233-6877. We love to hear from you.

How to Prevent a Tree From Falling

Lafayette Tree Pruning

Trees fall for several reasons, including root rot, extreme weather temperatures, and incorrect pruning. But, no matter what the cause is for your tree falling, it poses a danger to you and your loved ones, not to mention the potential for expensive property damage.

A falling tree can land on a house, or block the road, affecting transportation. Sometimes trees even fall on cars! Of course, prevention is best, so here are some ways you can prevent your trees from falling.

Remove Trees in Unsuitable Locations

All trees need the right environment to thrive, and this includes enough space. For example, if your tree doesn’t have enough room for its roots to develop, its chances of toppling over are higher because it has a weak root system. Trees with shallow roots can raise and crack sidewalks, or interfere with your home’s plumbing. If this is the case, you may want to call in a tree removal service.

Care For Your Trees

Proper pruning ensures that trees remain healthy and grow stronger over time. Remember, even broken branches can cause significant harm. They’re heavier than they look! Here are some of the easiest ways to prevent your trees from falling:

• Prune correctly to maintain their strength and structural integrity
• Water and fertilize properly
• Avoid using heavy equipment that damages your tree roots
• Trim trees to remove dead branches

Tree Falling? Stake It

For young trees, staking them to the ground is the best way to prevent them from toppling over. This can be an important step when new trees are just getting established.

Professional Tree Maintenance Services

While you can’t prevent things like storms from contributing to your tree falling, some issues like rot, disease, and pest infestations can be controlled. A specialist will determine if any of your trees are a hazard. So, planning for regular maintenance and inspection with an arborist can identify any problems before they get out of hand.

Tree Falling and Removal Services

Regular maintenance minimizes the risk of a tree falling, maintains its health, and protects your home. Do you have a fallen tree, or are you worried about a tree on your property? Tree removal is an involved and delicate process. At Sexy Trees, we can conduct the appropriate risk assessments, and give you a free estimate. Contact us at (925) 233-6877.

Your Tree Watering Guide

Walnut Creek Tree Removal

Extended periods of dry weather leave backyard trees dependent on homeowners for survival. Surprisingly, lack of rainfall kills millions of trees across the country. In fact, according to KPCC’s environment and science coverage, 27 million trees died just in California during the 2017 drought. In an average year, the Golden State loses roughly a million trees. But excessive watering can make a tree overly reliant on irrigation, so we’ve put together this handy tree water guide to clear up any confusion.

How Much Water Do Trees Need?

The goal is to supplement enough water to support the growth and health of your trees. But you still want them to be resilient. It’s important not to water so much that it encourages more canopy growth than would occur (on a good year) with natural rainfall.

For mature trees, aim to moisten the soil up to 10” or more. A weekly deep soaking is better than a frequent shallow watering guide. Even if your lawn receives direct irrigation, it’s probably not sufficient for your trees. Shallow waterings cause tree roots to stay near the upper layers of soil. They’re more likely to dry out on the surface, and also more vulnerable to drought.

Watering Guide to New Trees

When you plant a new tree, most of its roots will remain within a root ball for a few months. You can help the tree anchor itself by keeping the surrounding soil moist. This encourages healthy roots to grow. After several months, extend the watering zone to include the area under the tree’s canopy. If nature doesn’t provide soaking rains, water your new tree as many as three times per week, or the root ball can dry out. It takes a couple growing seasons for your new tree to establish itself.

Should I Mulch Under My Trees?

Mulch prevents weeds and grass from taking over and bullying your tree for water. A layer of organic mulch also conserves moisture. Use two to three inches of shredded bark or pine straw, but avoid piling it against the trunk because it could cause rot.

The amount of water a tree needs is decided by multiple factors, such as its species and age, as well as the soil quality and local climate. For a more personalized tree watering guide, please contact our team of trained arborists at (925) 233-6877.

Signs You Have Sick Trees

Alamo Tree Pruning

Trees are living things, and like us, they can become diseased and die. This is why it’s important to examine your trees on a regular basis. Fortunately, it’s actually pretty easy to determine if you have sick trees by performing a simple visual test. Knowing what to watch out for will help you avoid damage to your home and property.

Here are some telltale signs you have sick trees:

Poor Structure

Leaning limbs or branches that cause abnormal growth patterns are worrisome. Healthy trees have strong trunks that hold up the weight of branches, so be on the lookout for weak branch unions.

Peeling Bark

Depending on the species, peeling bark is one possible sign you have sick trees. Bark protects a tree from water loss, disease, and extreme temperature fluctuations, among other things. If it’s shedding bark, the tree may not be able to preserve enough essential nutrients.

Dead Branches

Naked branches can indicate a sick tree during seasons when they should be covered with foliage. If you look closely, you may discover insect damage, or tree rot.

Abnormally Colored Leaves

Leaf problems? Trees that aren’t thriving probably won’t have leaves that appear healthy, either. Look out for deformed leaves, spots, or unusual coloration.

Noticeable Pest Movement

Pest infestations can do a lot of damage to your trees. Have you noticed small holes bored into the wood? This is a clear indication of insects. Bark beetles and moths are common offenders. At least this is one sign of a sick tree that’s easier to spot.

Abnormal Fungi and Mushroom Growth

Examining a tree from the ground up can reveal a lot about its health. Search the base of your trees for signs of decay, fungi and mushrooms, or severed roots. Not all mushrooms are harmful to trees, but unfortunately, they can indicate a sick tree may be infected with a rot-inducing pathogen.

If you notice any of these signs, it’s time to call in an expert. Sick trees should be treated quickly, or they can infect other trees, and even die. But sometimes it’s tricky to identify just what the problem is. Our experienced professionals are ready to help with any further questions. Please contact our office today.