Living with Tree Risk
Written by: Nathan Schuettpelz, Certified Arborist/Municipal Specialist WI-0887AM
A few years ago, I included a bold statement in an article. “There is a level of risk associated with the trees on your property.” To some, this may create an uneasy feeling when looking out on a backyard of large, majestic trees. To me, this is an acceptance of the challenges we must navigate in the arboricultural industry. Yes, there are risks that are inherent with living around trees, but there are many more benefits trees provide! With ongoing management, we can reduce this risk to an acceptable level where you can be comfortable and enjoy the benefits of your trees.
To understand risk, we must first understand the trees on your property. On our first visit, your Certified Arborist will visually inspect your trees. From that original assessment, and communication of what you would like to achieve, they will provide recommendations to improve the overall health of your trees. In turn, our recommendations will reduce the risk of these trees. From that point, all Wachtel Tree Science Certified Arborists that visit your property will continue to monitor the health of your trees, and changes that may happen over time.
Sometimes, we come to the conclusion that our original inspection does not provide all the information we need. It is at this point that the Consulting Department is called in to provide a more detailed assessment of your trees. As Consulting Arborists, we utilize standard procedures set by the International Society of Arboriculture Tree Risk Assessment Qualification. We further rely on specialized equipment to gain a comprehensive understanding of the health and structural stability of trees. From this point, we will work with you and your Certified Arborist to develop a management plan to achieve your goals.
I would like to say that in most cases, we can provide a plan that preserves your tree and allows you to enjoy it for many years to come. In the case of Ash trees affected by the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), this is no longer the case. In southeast Wisconsin, the EAB infestation has progressed to the point that if you have a tree that is not currently being treated, it is time to plan for removal. Recent scientific research has shown that EAB infested Ash trees are structurally compromised. Their likelihood of failure has significantly increased. At Wachtel Tree Science, we are addressing this issue internally in the form of new tree removal policies. It is our goal that we successfully reduce the risk on your property by the removal of dead/dying Ash trees while keeping our Arborists safe.
As Certified Arborists, it is our goal to balance the benefits of trees with the inherent risk of living around them. Call your Arborist today to see how we may help you!