What Is An Arborist?

In short, an arborist is someone who is highly trained and specialized to care for trees or otherwise known as arboriculture. They are often called “tree surgeons” because their role is to remove dead limbs or branches from trees and to also monitor their health to look for signs of disease. Aside from trimming and pruning trees, arborists are highly skilled maintaining and rehabilitating trees. 

A certified arborist is one who has given credentials by the International Society of Arboriculture, which is based on both tree care experience and a comprehensive exam.

Arborists also go by several other names more recognizable when you’re searching for tree service providers in the Denver area. You may see them referred to as “tree trimmer”, “tree surgeon”, tree care specialist”, “tree climber”, or “ground workman”. Whatever you may see them called, their role is vital to ensure the safety of people like you and I by trimming trees so they don’t interfere with power lines, busy roads, sidewalks, or your home.  

What Types of Jobs do Arborists Perform?

Arborists are tree specialists with a specific set of skills in tree care. You would be surprised that the jobs they perform are more than just diagnosing trees and removing dead limbs. 

  • Prune tree limbs using chain saws, handsaws, pole saws/pruners, and or other various other tools.
  • Climb trees with ropes and harness to remove dying, diseased, dead or hazardous limbs from trees.
  • Cut, load, chip and transport tree limbs/logs with the aid of a chipper and hauler. 
  • Remove dead or diseased trees from properties.
  • Remove stumps using stump grinding machinery. 
  • Proper planting techniques and tree selection. 
  • Diagnose tree diseases and recommending a treatment plan. 
  • Provide pest control treatment.
  • Diagnose trees potential to become hazardous to surrounding properties. 
  • Respond to tree emergencies during storms when they become hazardous.

How to become an arborist?

If you’re interested in becoming an arborist, you must first have a passion for trees! While that seems obvious, people that go into the business have a love for nature and see the value in maintaining healthy trees.

Depending on the job you’re seeking (see below), you may or may not need a degree to become an arborist. Some employers require at least an associates degree in arboriculture so that you have some background knowledge in tree maintenance, specifically about soil fertility and plant pathology. Other helpful degrees are Bachelor’s programs in forestry to learn about botany and forest ecology.

If you’re considering starting your own business, there’s nothing better than gaining hands on experience. On the job training is from tree care companies is one of the best learning opportunities out there to gain knowledge of the industry and eventually start your own company. This will help you understand customer’s needs, identify trees, and understand how to do proper tree removal. 

Who do arborists work for?

Arborists often work for government municipalities or even power companies. Oftentimes, universities, golf courses, and parks will also hire tree specialists. Some arborists, like ourselves, will start their own business where they can privately serve residential and commercial property owners. 

Becoming an arborist is a physically demanding job to say the least. You also use heavy machinery that can be dangerous. 

Where Can I Learn More?

  • The Tree Care Industry Association offers a “Tree Care Academy” of professional education options. It also has a Certified Tree Care Safety Professional (CTSP) program for tree care professionals.

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