408 867-0143 | Since 1973 | ISA Certified Arborist
Saratoga Tree Service

The Truth of the Story


A well known, and very profitable tree care firm has a recipe for success. It started with the statement that "every tree needs service". This company, which will remain nameless, worked their sales staff hard, pushing the attitude that they must make sales at every level. The strategy was this; first push the trim job for all it’s worth. Then push the fertilizer because "all trees need to be fed". With all that fertilizer, the trees push out more growth than ever and in many cases, the aphid population flourished as well as all the other leaf eating insects. Most leaf eating insects are attracted to the masses of succulent new growth. Now that the insects are here, sell a spray job. This of course becomes a maintenance contract. The next year the same trees will need to be trimmed again and fertilized and sprayed, .etc. That is the secret to making money in the tree business.


Ok, what’s wrong with this story? It is not in the best interest of the trees and certainly not in the best interest of your pocketbook.


Here is the truth. Most trees decline due to people pressure and the efforts by people to "make things better". Decay is one factor that leads to the premature decline and death in trees. Most decay is caused by the wounds in trees. Most wounds are caused by people with chainsaws and people using heavy equipment. Trees in the forest do fine without any help.


Here is another truth. Most tree workers do not do a proper job pruning trees. Most tree trimmers do most of the work with a chainsaw because it gets the job done fast. Most trimmers think it is better to make a few big cuts and move on. Most trimmers are too lazy to work with hand saws and hand pruners because it is not fast. Here is an important truth that you need to understand. It takes longer to do the job right but if the tree is pruned correctly, you will not need to do it as often. The tree’s health will improve with a proper pruning but a (quick chainsaw job) will cause long term decline. Even if the tree looks like it sprouted out fine, the poor cuts lead to internal decay that will cause early decline. Often the decay leads to limb or whole tree failure.


Did you know that tree diseases are spread by not cleaning the saws between infected trees?


Also, climbers that use "spurs or hooks" to get up into the tree are also spreading diseases and decay.


This is a career that we are proud of. We get angry when we see so much improper work being done and people being cheated. It usually boils down to the cheapest bid gets the job, but if the cheapest bid, costs you your trees, how much did you save?


Like a tree, this site is growing. Check back often to see how we are evolving.