Storm damage, advanced disease and pest issues, and risk of failure are all common reasons for removing trees in urban and suburban settings. For instance, hundreds of millions of trees in the U.S. have died and had to be removed due to the invasive Emerald Ash Borer beetle. In the average Wisconsin community, ash trees made up 20% of all street trees, and in some communities, they represented more than 50%. While the removal of ash trees affected by EAB has been necessary for safety, it’s also been a serious setback to the urban canopy, local ecosystems, and aesthetics in these communities.
Arborists Preserve Trees
As arborists, we always want to consider all alternatives before cutting a tree down. Removal is the last resort! Too often healthy trees are removed to make way for home renovation, new construction, and landscape makeovers. While planting new trees is always valuable, it’s not a like-for-like replacement for matures trees that are lost.
Here are some reasons to think twice about tree removal:
When it comes to insect and disease issues, there are often treatments that can protect against or mitigate the impact. For example, the fungal disease apple scab can be held at bay with proper treatment. Insects that bore into trees such as emerald ash borer and bronze birch borer can also be controlled with treatment. We recently introduced organic treatment programs for many of these issues.
Trees with storm damage, weak unions or overextended branches can often be saved with cabling or bracing. Tree support systems can reduce the likelihood of failure and help prolong the life of the tree.
Mature trees provide more eco benefits than young trees because they are larger and more efficient in doing so. These eco benefits include reducing air pollution and storm water runoff in addition to carbon sequestration. The eco benefits a mature tree can provide in the next 20 years to a person or family have much higher value than what a young tree can provide.
Individual trees are part of the urban canopy, which has an important role in reducing the effect of urban heat islands and maintaining property values, in addition to the eco benefits mentioned above. Every tree removed from a yard affects not only that yard but the entire community.
“The smartest thing to do is preserve the trees we have,” says Hoppe Tree Service President August Hoppe. “With proper pruning, support systems and plant health care, we can help urban trees live long and healthy lives.”
The certified arborists at Hoppe Tree Service are experts in tree preservation. You can request a tree inspection for your yard by one of our certified arborists by calling 414.257.2111 or requesting a quote online.