What exactly is an arborist ?



Ever wondered what an arborist really does? This article has been written with the help of the arborists at Trädfällning Kalmar, a Swedish tree-company. will explain everything you need to know and more. 


What an arborist really is a person who specializes in trees and arboriculture. The official definition according to Wikipedia is a “professional in the practice of arboriculture, which is the cultivation, management, and study of individual trees, shrubs, vines, and other perennial woody plants in dendrology and horticulture.”


To become an arborist one has to study for several years. People, companies and municipalities often hire arborists to maintain the health and safety of individual trees.

What is the difference between an arborist and a tree-surgeon? 

A person who works with trees may go under many names. They might call themselves an arborist, a tree-surgeon or even a tree-lopper. However, the main difference lies in education.


Even though many professionals in the tree-industry refer to themselves as certified arborists, they might not have the necessary education to do so. To be able to call yourself a certified arborist one must undergo extensive training and have knowledge within all aspects of arboriculture and having worked as a full-time arborist for a minimum of three years. One must then pass the ISA Certified Arborist exam. You can learn more on what it takes to become a certified arborist according to the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) here


What kind of work does an arborist do?

An arborist performs a variety of tasks to promote optimal health and safety for trees. If a tree, for different reasons needs to be removed, an arborist can do this also. An arborist can be hired for the following tasks, among others:


One of the most common jobs an arborist is hired for is tree pruning, which is done to promote optimal growth and health of a tree. Tree pruning is often performed by the arborist climbing up the tree with safety gear and then removing branches that prohibit the tree from growing in an optimal way. If a branch is dying, infested with insects or have a disease it may have a negative impact on the tree as a whole and must therefore be removed. 


Branches are also often removed if they grow too close to each other, which can damage the bark of the tree. Another common reason for tree pruning is if branches create a hazard for people passing by the tree.


If a tree has been severely damaged by a storm and is causing a hazard, an arborist can choose to safely remove the whole tree or individual branches. The same goes if the tree is diseased, dying, is inconveniently located or has to be removed for another good reason. If the reason for tree-removal isn’t good enough or if it can be fixed by pruning, the arborist may choose to deny the removal. 

Planting trees and promoting growth

An educated arborist normally has extensive knowledge of how to plant trees and promote their growth. They will choose the optimal place and time of year to plant the trees since this is a very important factor that will decide how the trees will do in the future. 

I hope you have enjoyed this article and that you now have a better understanding of what an arborist is and what they do. Thanks for reading!


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