Plant Doctor's Seasonal Report

The Plant Doctor's Seasonal Report brings you the most important and interesting seasonal Wisconsin tree care information. This is where our Wisconsin Certified Arborists share their experience and passion for all aspects of the tree care industry. From preventative plant health care topics like the Wisconsin Emerald Ash Borer epidemic to daily happenings at the Wachtel office, the Plant Doctor's Seasonal Report keeps you informed.

Read below to see the most up to date tree care information from our Wachtel staff of Certified Arborists and Wisconsin tree care specialists. For even more information on important tree care, take a look at our Wisconsin tree care news blog.

Contact our Wisconsin tree service specialists today to learn more about Wachtel Tree Science

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Spring 2015 - The Importance of Tree Diversity in the Landscape

By Bill Reichenbach, Certified Arborist WI-0188A Why is planting a wide selection of trees in our landscapes  important? Let’s look at a little past history to delve into this question.Decades ago many of our cities streets were planted with American elms. They were easily grown, tough and well adapted to growing in urban environments. They were also beautiful and created wonderful canopies that arched over streets, and shaded our homes. Many elms were planted.  Some streets were lined exclusively with American elms. Dutch elm disease (a fungal pathogen) arrived in the U.S. in 1928 and spread from east to west devastating our elm population. Many communities lost a vast majority of their tree cover. Relatively few American elms remain today.Following the loss of the elms, other trees were planted as replacements. Unfortunately we did not fully learn our lesson in the importance of diversity. A large number of ash trees were planted to replace the lost elms.  Ash t...

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Spring 2015 - The Science of Safety

By ake Kubisiak, Certified Arborist Annually the tree care industry has one of the highest rates of accidents per hour worked according to OSHA.  Our job can create multiple exposures to employee injury or property damage on a daily basis.  The Science of Safety is a study of how human interaction and psychology play a significant role in influencing and creating a culture of safety.    At Wachtel Tree Science we continually invest in the safety of our people and company.  We hold a weekly safety meeting covering a review of near hits and accidents along with a training topic related to our work.  Our safety program is guided by a Safety Coordinator and Safety Committee made up of employees.  Three of our employees are Certified Treecare Safety Professionals – an industry sponsored program.  Near hits and incidents are recorded and analyzed to guide the next year’s training needs. Employees are trained and certified in First Aid and...

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Spring 2015 - The Lion Sleeps Tonight

By Tony Arnoldi, Board Certified Master Arborist …but maybe not tomorrow night.    The warm temperatures we have had lately have been long anticipated—finally we can get outside and enjoy the rite of spring—blooming spring bulbs, then shrubs, and next flowering trees and perennials join in! It’s time for long walks, Sunday drives and maybe the year’s first visit to the custard stand. Something else is stirring also. The warmth causes the dormant Emerald Ash Borers’ metabolism to increase. With its blood pumping faster, the urge to chew its way through the wood to the outside world grows stronger. Soon, very soon…then it can mate, find another suitable ash on which to lay its eggs, and enjoy the rest of the summer in the sun. They do love the warm sun… Another name for it could be the Ash Lion. It is responsible for so many millions of dead ash already, and its ravenous appetite is far from abated. Eventually, all unprotect...

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Winter 2015 - We Do Trees Right!

by Jake Kubisiak, ISA Certified Arborist Our goal is to consistently provide the highest quality tree care possible.  We provide numerous options to meet our clients’ variety of needs.  Our company has three departments specializing in meeting these needs: Plant Health Care, Tree & Landscape, and Consulting.  These groups work together sharing resources and communicating needs, however, each is a separate discipline of tree care science.   Plant Health Care Plant Health Care takes in the whole picture.  Careful inspection of your trees and observed abnormality helps us understand causal agents.  Often there are other factors affecting your tree’s health that could be addressed along with an insect or disease issue.  Preventative care can help improve the condition and health of your tree improving the likelihood that your tree will avoid susceptibility to insect or disease pathogens.  Our approach limits chemical use and preser...

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Winter 2015 - The Value of a History of Leadership

by Anthony Arnoldi, Board Certified Master Arborist When Larry Wachtel founded Wachtel Tree Science in 1935, he was a pioneer in professional tree care, and valued the importance of his employees’ continuing education in the industry along with their commitment to professional organizations. This approach was rare then, but helped to kindle the improvement in knowledge, safety, and professionalism that the industry has benefited from. Larry was president of the National Arborist Association in 1949, received the Distinguished Service Award from the Wisconsin Arborist Association (WAA), and was an Honorary Life Member of the WAA and the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). Wachtel Tree Science was instrumental in the formation and advancement of these national and local organizations, and it continues that commitment to this day. Many of our clients chose Wachtel Tree Science for their tree care work because of our company culture, educational backgrounds and commitmen...

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Winter 2015 - Tree Care is a Science

By: Jean Ferdinandsen, Certified Arborist WI-0149A Our goal at Wachtel Tree Science is to provide you and your trees with the highest level of expertise and care.  Science is a systematic enterprise that we use to build and increase our knowledge. What is “good science”?  Science follows certain rules and guidelines of observation and experimentation that are well-defined.  First a hypothesis is developed; then it’s followed by theories and proofs.  While it is a human endeavor, facts (generally-accepted realities) vs. opinion (neither fact nor theory) are the foundations of good science. Pseudo-science is usually based on a kernel of truth that makes it seem plausible.  However, it may lack other evidence or expertise.  Evidence and knowledge from all points of view need to be incorporated to produce good science.  Beware of “science” that is not based on independent confirmation of facts or that presents a bias witho...

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Winter 2015 - Sustain Yourself – Plant a Tree

Bill Reichenbach – Certified Arborist WI – 0188A One dictionary definition of sustain is ‘strengthen or support physically or mentally’. Other meanings include, maintain, provide for, continue, keep alive, and nourish. What better way of sustaining yourself then planting a tree! Trees provide for us in so many ways: oxygen, wood, food, beauty, the list goes on and on. Not only do they provide for us, but also for much of the life on the planet. Birds, insects, mammals, all life depends upon plants to sustain themselves. Not only do we depend upon trees physically, but emotionally as well. Increase Lapham, Wisconsin’s first scientist wrote, “Desolate indeed would be our dwellings were their environs entirely treeless.” To him, trees were, “associated with our early recollections, and become in a great degree companions of our lives; and we unconsciously form strong attachments…thus increasing our love of home, and improving our ...

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Fall 2014 - Caring for Newly Planted Trees, Shrubs, and Perennials

By Bill Reichenbach, ISA Certified Arborist WI-0188A Planting trees and landscape plants is a gratifying experience, well worth the expense and effort that goes into proper planting. The right care after planting is crucial to protect your investment and to insure that the new plants thrive and provide lasting benefits. WATERING – Not easily prescribed, as it is dependent upon many factors. Existing soil type, recent weather, plant size and condition all play a role in how often to water. Listed below are guidelines to follow when caring for new plantings: As a rule, provide newly planted trees and shrubs with at least 1” of water per week. Water thoroughly and deeply when you water and understand that roots grow out like spokes on a wheel – water 360 degrees around the base of the plant, soaking the entire root ball. Plants planted in heavy, poorly drained clay soils will not need watering as often as those planted in well-drained loams or sandy soils. Sandy so...

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Fall 2014 - Stress? What Stress?

By Keith Glaznap, ISA Certified Arborist WI-0678A It’s finally warm outside and you are enjoying the sunshine while sipping on your favorite beverage. The trees on your property are full of life! As you stroll around the side of your home something catches your eye and to your horror you soon realize that your favorite tree is looking “sick”. The foliage has seemingly turned yellow overnight and a few branches have not leafed out. You begin to wonder how this could have happened as that tree looked “fine” just last year.  Does this sound familiar to you? If it does you are not alone. While many trees this past winter did suffer from severe winter damage most trees will not “suddenly” become “sick”. Many stressed trees go through a period of gradual decline. This decline could fester for a number of years before the more obvious signs such as yellow leaves and dead branches finally manifest themselves. By the time you see thes...

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Fall 2014 - Fast and Quick Isn't Always Better

By: Jeff Wilson, Certified Arborist IL-0099A In our daily lives usually getting something quickly is the norm and most times that’s a good thing!  However, the “green” that surrounds us, the Trees and Grass, know that fast and quick can be detrimental.  Here are some facts that may help you with your tree and grass care: Shade trees, like any other landscape plants, will respond to fertilization.  Most shade trees exist in nature without much care, but transplanting trees into urban areas or man-made conditions can create problems.  Shade trees often grow in restricted root zone areas; surrounded by pavement or compacted soil or physically damaged by construction activities.  The root system is just as important (and delicate) as the above-ground parts.  Application of slow release fertilizer forms of fertilizer provides the most efficient use of nutrients because root growth and nutrient absorption can occur ...

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Winter tree care and pruning newsletter

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