The following was posted in my neighborhood list serve. What do you think?
first thing you should do is stand far enough away from the house to
just see if you get the feeling that the tree is crowding the house.
Yes________ No _________
Next, measure (in feet) how far away
the tree is from the house or any concerned structure. Is it less than
20 ft.? Yes________ No _________
The next step is to take a
retractable tape measure and stand facing the tree. Hold the tape level
horizontally about 4-5 ft. off the ground and measure the diameter of
the tree in inches. Is the diameter greater than 18 inches?
Next, is the tree near a driveway? Yes______ No________ How far away? _____________
Is the tree near a walkway? Yes________ No________ How far away? __________________
Is the tree near a street? Yes________ No________ How far away? _________________
there obvious damage to any of the above such as a sidewalk cracking or
heaving up of the concrete by tree roots? Yes________ No_______
Standing 30 ft. or so away and looking at the crown of the tree, does it appear to be full? Yes_____ No_____
While still out there, estimate how wide the crown is by using multiples of the diameter of the trunk that
you measured earlier. Is your estimate greater than 30 ft.? Yes_______ No______
While you are still looking at the crown are there any dead limbs visible? Yes_____ No______
Are they in the crown? Yes______ No______
Are they on the edges? Yes______ No______
Are they lying on the ground? Yes______ No______
Now add up all your yes answers and if your total is three or more, you might want to get some referrals
for sho’nuff licensed, trained, bonded/insured, spectrum, multi-disciplined tree service (not just a tree
cutter) to see what logical options are available to increase the tree’s safety and health. Some things to
consider are root feeding, cabling, crown thinning, balancing the crown wind load, repairing any large
cavities in the main trunk and/or limbs, plus remedying the cause of the damage, install a lightning
protection system, etc. As we can see there are so many possibilities or needs, every situation is different.
His points system is very aggressive. While he is considering
potential target, he is not considering the overall condition of the
trees with the exception of dieback. Using his method we would have
to clear cut a huge portion of Atlanta. Moreover, he is not
considering overall probability. He is eliminating all risk but
that is neither practical nor affordable. Using his same
methodology for cars, no would drive (e.g. do you live near a major
intersection? Do drive on the Freeway?). Last, he mentions bonded
and insured tree people does not mention certified arborist. If you
have lots a trees hire a consulting arborist. One near you can be
found at www.treesaregood.org.
This is a good time to have dead limbs pruned but homeowners need to use a Certified Arborist. The Georgia Forestry Commission provides a PDF - "The Homeowner's Role in Maintaining the Urban Forest" with tips for selecting Certified Arborists. http://www.gfc.state.ga.us/community-forests/management/trees-storm....
Our large shade trees sure are saving lots of money on the A/C bills this summmer!