What Is An Arborist?

certified arborist

Last time we discussed some of the many situations in which it is safest and best to consult a professional tree service company to fix a tree-related problem. Not all tree service professionals are certified arborists, however, and often people do not understand the difference, so we thought we would explain what an arborist does here.

The word “arborist” is from the Latin arbor, meaning “tree,” and broadly it means a cultivator of trees. More specifically The International Society of Arboriculture defines an arborist as: “an individual trained in the art and science of planting, caring for, and maintaining individual trees.” An arborist is a tree professional with the expertise necessary to recognize a variety of tree conditions and diseases, to diagnose a tree-related problem, and to provide the services required to nurture a tree, restore a tree to health, or know when a tree is beyond help or poses a health threat to other trees and recommend removing it.

In what situations can an arborist offer invaluable help?

Planting – Knowing which trees will flourish in which climates and soils is the job of an arborist. A tree is an investment for a homeowner, and will provide numerous benefits throughout its multi-decade lifetime. Consulting an arborist may mean the difference between enjoying healthy and attractive trees on your property or making a costly planting mistake.

Pruning – Not all trees require regular pruning in order to thrive or produce, but there are a number that do. Proper pruning can also save a diseased or injured tree.

Emergency care – Storms can bring down trees in ways that can be both overwhelming and dangerous for a homeowner to fix. Not only will arborists be able to correctly identify which trees can be saved and which cannot, they will be able to remove the tree debris on your property without further damage to life or property.

If arborists are tree experts, certified arborists must have experience working with trees and must pass a comprehensive tree exam put together and offered by the International Society of Arboriculture. They must also maintain their certification through continuing education, in order to remain familiar with the most recent advances in tree care, as well as abide by a professional code of ethics.