Tree Care

Tree Trimming vs. Tree Pruning

Trimming and pruning are two of the best ways for homeowners to take care of their trees. Both of these services create an aesthetically pleasing landscape and encourage the health and growth of your trees. But before you head into your garden with clippers and shears, it is important to know the differences and benefits of trimming and/or pruning. This way you can create the look you’ve always wanted, without causing any harm or damage to the trees.

Tree Trimmingtree pruning in Canton, MI

Tree trimming is mainly performed to create a clean, professional, aesthetically pleasing appearance. Any branch that does not add intrinsic value to the tree (i.e. dead, diseased, or low hanging branches) will be removed. This aids in the tree maintaining a nice, natural shape, and it adds value to your lawn and landscape.

Some other benefits to tree trimming are:

  • Health – By removing dead, dying, and diseased branches you are preventing the spread of those diseases to other healthy parts of the tree. Also, you are creating space for sun and oxygen to get to deeper parts of the tree, which improves overall health and growth.
  • Safety – Dead branches that hang over your home, garage, or cars can do serious damage to your property. All it takes is moderate to high winds, rain, and/or a storm to bring those branches crashing down. Trim those branches to significantly reduce the chances of that happening!

Tree Pruningoak wilt found on tree leaf in Michigan

Tree pruning is a tedious task, which focuses more on the trees health and structure, and less on the shape. When pruning, handheld tools are utilized to remove dead and diseased branches that can easily spread come springtime. Some of the common diseases that need to be removed via pruning are:

  • Oak wilt – A fungal disease that eventually can kill the tree
  • Dutch elm disease – Another fungal disease spread by elm beetles on elm trees
  • Fire blight – Effects fruit trees and spreads rapidly

Winter is a good time to prune your trees as these diseases have often gone dormant, and can be removed before having any negative effects come springtime. Also, it is easier to see the dead and diseased branches in the wintertime, especially after all the leaves have fallen.

By pruning now, you are preparing your trees for lush, healthy growth come springtime. By removing unnecessary branches you are creating less stress on the tree now, and more room for growth in the future. It’s a win-win!

At PPM, we offer both tree trimming and tree pruning services. Our experts will advise you on what we think is best for your trees, and we will create an optimal plan to fit your needs and create that beautiful landscape you’ve always wanted. Give us a call at (877) 454-8733 to hear more

5 Tips On Transplanting Trees

If you love trees then you hate to see them go to waste. If you have trees growing on your property in inconvenient places you might want to transplant them someplace else, why not, it’s a free tree! Here is a list of 5 tips to help you transplant a tree properly.

Prepare the Sitetree transplant

Before you even dig up the tree you should dig the hole first. It should be about three times as wide and the same depth as the root ball. If you are planting in the fall or the tree is more than 1 inch in diameter, you can rinse the soil off the roots to make it easier to handle. Set the tree in the hole so that the soil line on the tree is even with the surrounding soil. Don’t plant too deep. Cover the roots with dirt and gently pack it. Use the end of a shovel to pack dirt in further and create holes for watering. Form the dirt around the base of a tree into a bowl shape to keep water from flowing out and eroding the dirt away.

Save the Roots

The amount of roots you need to transplant a tree depends on the diameter of the trunk. Deciduous trees with a 1-inch trunk diameter should have a root ball size of about 18 inches wide and 14 inches deep. For a 2-inch diameter trunk, the root ball should be at least 28 inches wide and 19 inches deep.

Plant in the Fall

The best time to plant a tree is when the tree is dormant. Do so before the ground freezes and it can still receive adequate rainfall. Fall planting allows nutrients to be directed to the roots since there is no more demand from leaves.

Water Regularly

prune branches

Because it’s impossible to not damage roots when you transplant a tree, newly transplanted trees need a regular watering schedule for the first two to three years after planting, especially during dry periods. If you are transplanting in the fall when the tree is dormant it is not recommended to water after the first frost.

Prune

To help promote root growth and lessen stress on the tree, young trees should have lower branches pruned. This is especially true if you are planting in any season other than fall. This will help balance the loss of roots and the shock of the transplant. Remember, trees grow out, not up, so those knee high branches are going to have to be cut at some point anyway.

Trees that are over 2 inches in diameter can weigh several hundred pounds. Trees this size should be handled by a professional. If you have any trees that need planting make an appointment with PPM today.

Tree Removal: 4 Essential Tips for Safely Removing a Tree

Do you have a tree that needs to come down? Do you have a chainsaw and the time to do it yourself? Tree removal can be a very dangerous and time-consuming task. It’s usually best left to the professionals, but if you are up for the challenge here are some tips for safely removing a tree.

always be safe with tree removal

Safety First When Cutting Trees

The first thing you need to consider is your safety, other’s safety, and any potential damage that could be caused. Trees are a lot bigger on the ground than you may think. If your tree is more than 20 feet tall then it’s safest to get a professional to do the removal for you.

 

It’s important to check for vehicles, powerlines, or structures in all directions around the tree. It’s also a good idea to let your neighbors know beforehand that you will be removing the tree so they can keep any kids or pets inside. Remember, a dead tree will shatter when it hits the ground sending small, sharp pieces of wood flying in all directions.

Which Direction?

Before you start cutting decide which direction you want the tree to fall. If the tree is already leaning in the direction you want it to fall, congratulations, you’re job is made significantly easier. But if you need to coax the tree in a certain direction or you are working in an extremely cramped space you have two options.

Notch Cutting

Cutting a notch in the trunk will make tree removal much easier

This is the most common and safest method of felling a tree. Start by cutting a notch in the tree on the side you want it to fall. Make the top cut first then make the bottom cut. If done correctly a notch will drop out. Many inexperienced cutters will dive right into sawing the tree without making a notch and nine times out of ten the tree will pinch the blade giving you a new task of trying to get the weight of the entire tree off your saw. This is a messy situation that can be easily avoided with a notch. After cutting the notch start cutting from the other side of the tree so it’s level with the corner of the notch. The tree should fall easily in the direction you want.

From The Top Down

Sometimes the location and size of the tree can make cutting it down a little tricky. For instance, if you live in an urban area with lots of wires, houses, and fences around. If this is the situation or if you have a large tree to remove then it may be best to call in the professionals. This method is a bit more dangerous and time-consuming but, if done safely, it can save you from paying for any extensive damage.

 

If you decide to do it yourself then start by securing an extension ladder to the tree. Use a strong rope, you don’t want any wobbling while you’re carrying a chainsaw up. From the top of the ladder see what you can cut. Start with smaller branches, surgically cutting the tree to pieces from the top down. If branches are too big or long it may require you to cut the branch little by little. After cutting all of the branches from the tree you’re left with a tall stump. This can be cut into pieces or felled in an easier and more manageable way.

The Safest Method of Tree Removal: Let the Professionals Handle It

Remember, if you decide to do this yourself, be safe and never take your eyes off a falling tree! If you would like to save yourself the risk and effort contact us at PPM Tree Service & Arbor Care. Let the professionals take care of all of your tree removal needs, call now at (877) 454-8733.

Haunted Forest: 5+ Spooky Attractions For The Halloween Season

It’s that time of the year when trees put on one final show before shedding beauty for the winter but that doesn’t mean we can’t still enjoy them. A great way to enjoy the Halloween season and get one final use out of our trees is to visit a haunted forest.

Deranged Haunt – Romulushaunted forest

Deranged Haunt features a haunted trail that covers five terrifying acres as well as a haunted house. It’s open from September 21st through October and the $13 admission covers both attractions.

Terrified Forest – Clarkston

Ghosts and ghouls have been terrorizing guests for over twenty years at Terrified Forest in Clarkston. This family-owned attraction takes you through a haunted forest. It is  nearly a mile long as well as a two story haunted manor.

The Haunted Forest at Adventure Park – West Bloomfield

Families with small children or those who want a more friendlier, less scary time check out the haunted forest at West Bloomfield Adventure Park. Friendly characters escort you along the way.  At the end there’s a pumpkin hunt where you can take your own pumpkin home. For teens and adults there is the scarier Terror Trail.

A Terror in Townsend Forest – Clarkston

This family friendly attraction features a half mile walk of terror through a haunted forest and archery range.  This is put on by the Oakland County Sportsman’s Club.

haunted manor

Scarefest Scream Park – Lennox Township

Voted top haunt in Detroit, Scarefest Scream Park boasts five unique attractions from the traditional hayride and forest to a haunted castle. They also feature haunted camping for adults. Only for the bravest of the brave. Expect to be terrorized and chased through the forest for 13 hours.

Rotten Manor – Holly

Featuring the largest custom built haunted house in Michigan, Rotten Manor is a highly-detailed one of a kind attraction that changes annually. Last year they added the Rotten Forest/Asylum. This is a mix of indoor/outdoor scares. Both attractions take about 35-45 minutes.

If your yard looks like you could open a haunted forest call the professionals at PPM or call us at (877) 454-8733

Tree Removal and Pruning: Why Fall is the Perfect Time for Tree Care

It’s that time of year again. The leaves are changing colors and trees are getting ready to go dormant for the winter. After a full season of growing your trees may look a little unruly and need a trim. It’s also a time when disease-bearing insects go into hibernation or die, making it the ideal time to think about tree removal.

Pruning

fall tree removal pruning is a great way to get your tree ready for fall

Pruning not only helps your trees look aesthetically pleasing, it also keeps the tree growing healthy. Low hanging, unnecessary branches draws water and nutrients away from the rest of the tree. Cutting these branches off in the fall, when the tree’s growing cycle has stopped, will redirect the nutrients to the rest of the tree and bolster its growth in the spring.

What To Use

Low hanging and small reachable limbs can be cut with pruning shears, clippers, or hand saws. Don’t worry about protecting the fresh cuts unless the species is susceptible to disease. Large, out of reach limbs or entire tree removal should be done by a professional.

Signs That It’s Time to Remove That Tree

Fall is upon us and by now the leaves on your trees are beginning to change colors and fall. If you have any sick trees in your lawn then fall is a great time to identify them and have them removed before winter comes. Here are a few diseases to watch out for:

Dutch Elm Disease

Carried by bark beetles, this invasive disease was first reported in the U.S. in 1928. By 1950 it had spread to Detroit and it’s suburbs, devastating the lofty elms that shaded most streets at the time. Despite a large-scale spraying campaign the disease spread through Michigan, decimating the elm population through the 70s. Since then the disease has come back several times and still affects the small number of elms remaining. An infected tree’s leaves will begin to turn yellow and drop off in summer months.

Oak Wilt

Oak Wilt is a disease caused by fungus carrying beetles. The disease most likely originated in Latin America, carried to the US by beetles that feed on the sap of oak trees. Confirmed in 56 counties in Michigan, this disease affects all species of oak but kills red oaks much faster than white oaks. You will start to see the leaves turn brown on the tips and work its way down. Eventually, the tree will lose its leaves and die within months. The Michigan DNR recommends not pruning your oaks from April through the end of summer because this is when the tree is most vulnerable.

Needle Blight

Have you noticed your pine trees turning brown, losing needles, or its needles looking abnormally thin? Then you might have needle blight. The fungus mycosphaerella pini causes needle blight and affects over sixty species of pine. The fungus spreads to other branches and trees by rain dripping through infected branches or by physical touch. If you see your pines exhibiting signs of needle blight then prune the infected branches and clean up any needles under the tree, ideally in the fall,  and move them to a safe location where the spores cannot infect other trees.

Take Action

tree removal pruning

After you’ve determined that your tree is infected and dying it is imperative to have that tree safely removed and the wood properly destroyed. Check with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources about transporting infected wood. In some cases, as with infected Elm trees, it is illegal to transport.

Get Professional Tree Removal Help

If you need a tree removed or pruned don’t wait until it’s too late! Contact us about our professional tree removal and pruning services at PPM or call us at, (877) 454-8733.

Fall Prep: Five Steps To Get Your Trees Ready For Winter

Here in Michigan, every changing season means shifting our lawn care and maintenance approach. This is especially vital with the trees and ornamental landscapes on our properties. The cooler autumn weather provides the perfect environment to repair any damage our trees incurred over the summer. Fall tree care is important to keep your trees healthy for the tough months ahead.

fall lawn care happy fall tree

 

Fall is a great time for us to get our large plants ready for the long Michigan winter before it arrives. High heat and drought conditions have wreaked havoc on our trees. This, coupled with bug infestations and weeds, may have weakened our tree’s and shrub’s immune systems.  Fall tree care is critical to get our ornamental plantings healthy and prepared to fight off the disease and insects that can attack throughout our coldest weather months.

 

As locals, we know firsthand just how tough our regional winter can be, even before the snow starts flying. Following these few critical fall tree care steps can strengthen your trees, so they are ready for whatever Mother Nature has in store for us this winter:

Mulch

Many people use mulch in the springtime to enhance the look of their decorative landscapes. However, organic mulch can also offer a multitude of benefits in the winter as well. Spread mulch around your trees and shrubs in the fall to help retain water and moderate extreme temperature swings. The mulch can also insulate the tree base to protect roots in harsh weather conditions.

Hydrate

fall lawn care water your plants

You may be surprised to learn that winter droughts are almost as tough on our trees and shrubs as our summer droughts. Occasionally watering your plants (when the soil is not frozen) in the winter can keep them thriving throughout the season.

Wrap The Base

Young trees can easily fall victim to a multitude of threats during the winter. Wrapping the base of these maturing plants can help protect them during the dormant season. Note: it’s important to remember to remove the wrap when spring arrives to ensure the plants are ready to grow again with the warmer weather.

fall lawn care pruning

Prune

The summer season can cause excessive growth that, if left unattended, can cause breakage or even damage our nearby plants. Fall provides an ideal opportunity to prune back overgrowth. This will relieve any unnecessary stress on the trees and stimulate future healthy growth.

Plant Now

Yes, really. Many home and business owners focus all of their planting efforts in the springtime. However, the cooler autumn air and growing conditions are ideal for promoting root growth in newly planted shrubs and trees.

Are Your Trees Ready For The Michigan Winter?

At PPM, we specialize in a full suite of maintenance solutions to keep your trees and shrubs thriving all year. Our onsite certified arborist creates innovative strategies that fortify your ornamental landscapes, keeping them healthy during the dormant seasons and ready to flourish in spring in summer. Contact us today to hear more!

When And Why You Should Cable Your Trees

We often imagine the trees on our property growing straight, secure, and healthy. However, sometimes, trees and large ornamental plantings grow erratically. Over time, their trunk and physical structure may fail to support the weight of its canopy and branches. If you notice that your tree is leaning excessively or showing signs of failure, take action! It’s essential to contact a certified arborist to discuss if tree cabling should be considered.

Tree Cabling: What You Need To Knowwhy and how to cable a tree

Cabling is a bracing method used by tree specialists and certified arborists to strengthen and preserve plantings with compromised growth patterns. Your chosen professional may recommend cabling your trees in several specific situations including:

Young Plantings

Young trees are often at a high risk to suffer from irregular growth. Before planting your new tree, it’s important to consider the height of the tree itself compared to the circumference of its root ball. If the canopy of the planting is significantly larger than the root system, cabling may prove an ideal solution to prevent unhealthy leaning. Cabling can also help young saplings planted in areas with high winds and drier soil for tipping over as well.

Mature Trees

When a tree is young, the burden of its branches on the area of attachment is generally insignificant. However, as the plant ages, its limbs may begin to droop under its own weight. Heavy snow, foliage, and fruit can also impact the tree’s inability to support its branch load. Strategic cabling can adequately redistribute the burden throughout the limbs to prevent a break as well as maintain a specific height or clearance if needed.

Restoring Vertical Splitscable the limbs of your tree to save it form falling

Sometimes structural stress or an unexpected storm can cause cracks or vertical splits throughout the tree. Splits can quickly destroy the health of even the sturdiest of trees, making it crucial to immediately contact a professional arborist at the first sign of damage. Cabling can be used to arrest further deterioration of damaged trees and extend their overall life expectancy. When successful, restorative cabling can eliminate the need for removing entire limbs or the tree itself.

Minimize Property Damage

Damaged or leaning trees can eventually break, damaging nearby structures such as sheds, fences, and even parts of a home or office building. Your chosen arborist will be able to determine if a tree’s trajectory may impact your property or assets and create a cabling strategy to reduce your risk.

Reduce Threat Of Personal Harm

Beyond property damage, a compromised tree that breaks or falls over may cause physical harm as well. The threat of injury is exceptionally high if the planting is in a populated space or an area that receives a lot of passing traffic. Cabling can support the impaired tree to help preserve the safety of anyone in the plant’s trajectory.

Contact PPM Tree Service Today

Are you concerned by leaning or drooping trees on your home or business property?

PPM Tree Service & Arbor Care can help!

Contact us today for a no-risk consultation with one of our onsite ISA certified arborists to discuss if your plantings could benefit from cabling or bracing.

6 Signs Your Tree Is About to Fall

Trees seem to have a bad habit of falling over in the worst places and times. We’ve all seen an unlucky car that’s taken the weight of a fallen branch during an overnight storm or even roofs that were collapsed by giant limbs snapping off.

With summer here it brings high winds and heavy rain, a duo for destruction and risk for trees which may not have what it takes to withstand a good storm. Sometimes we’re just unlucky, and a tree that’s fallen may have never been expected to collapse; however, most of the time you can determine which trees are at higher risks of falling and doing some severe damage.

Before you find yourself dealing with your tree’s untimely fate to crumple your car in your driveway or wake you up with water coming through an open roof, pay attention to these signs to help determine if your trees are safe or if you should take affirmative action to prevent an accident early.

1. The trunk has an open holeTree with hollow trunk could snap easier you may have a dying tree

When trees naturally prune themselves and drop a branch, a cavity can develop inside the trunk itself. Decay can start inside this hole and become more and more hollow. If it gets big enough, your tree’s structure will become at risk, and a heavy wind could cause a top-heavy trunk to sway enough to snap right at the cavity.

2. Tree is missing its bark

The bark on your tree plays an integral part in maintaining the integrity of the structure. Missing bark and deep cracks in a tree are referred to as ‘cankers.’ Having cankers in your tree makes it more susceptible to breaking in that particular area.

3. It’s dropping branches and looks dead

If you have an idea that your tree may be dying you should be cautious. When they begin to die, they’ll drop their branches which is a definite sign that something’s not right. When trees lose their limbs, they’re attempting to cut off areas that they aren’t able to provide enough nutrients for. Dead branches can cause just as much damage when they fall as a whole structure falling, depending on size and height.

4. Structure is starting to lean

You should have a decent idea of how your trees are shaped in your yard. If you have a tree that’s naturally grown at an angle, then you don’t need to be too worried. If you have a tree that’s grown straight and has started to slant upwards of 15 degrees over time, then it’s cause for worry. This could be due to wind or root damage and could be barely hanging on underground and just waiting for the right wind to send it toppling.

5. The branches are growing tight togetherBranches with a V shape can easily split apart

Even if your tree is healthy, the way its branches grow naturally could lead to a falling limb. Branches that grow close together and in the shape of a “V” are weaker than those that grow in the shape of a “U.” With a strong wind, those “V” shaped unions can easily snap and send a limb falling. This is where the importance of pruning each year comes to play to prevent weaker unions.

6. Leaves are dying from the center to the outside

Leaves start to die from the center of the tree and move out when the root system is diseased. When the roots are unhealthy, their nutrients cannot be appropriately sent up the trunk to the leaves that need them. The leaves in the center would react to a root issue first, so catching this early can be important in the aspect of preventing damage from it falling. Without healthy roots, you’re at risk for a fall due to the tree not having an anchor to hold itself up.

 

 

Think you’ve got a risky tree?

Contact one of our trained professionals for quality and trustworthy advice.

Request a Free Quote or Call Now at PPM Tree Service & Arbor Care LLC.

4 Reasons for Pruning Your Trees & Shrubs

All About Tree Pruning

Pruning a tree may seem self-explanatory and relatively simple, however, there are a lot of things that go into. There are several reasons for why trees need to get pruned and a lot of science that goes into it. Pruning betters the health of your trees and shrubs and makes them look great at the same time.

 

Pruning consists of eliminating dead or injured branches and limbs for the betterment of the entire organism. It may seem that by cutting off parts of a plant you’re causing more damage, though it’s the complete opposite! This process makes them healthier and they don’t feel a thing! Here are the main reasons to prune and how it affects the trees you own.

 

HealthPrune off dead branches on trees and shrubs

 

By taking off dead or injured branches you can direct water and nutrients back to the healthy limbs. Insects love to infiltrate a tree through areas where it’s vulnerable or rotting. By getting rid of these limbs it’ll make your tree less attractive to pesky bugs, preventing diseases they may carry. Sometimes, branches end up crossing paths. Eventually, they grow into each other or rub against themselves causing more damage and deformity. When you prevent this at the start, these branches aren’t able to cause each other problems down the road when they’re massive in size and a threat to the entire plant.

 

Safety

 

Sometimes branches grow in places that they shouldn’t. When a limb starts to reach out over a sidewalk or driveway, it could cause a potential threat to passersby or personal property if it ever falls. When a professional takes care of this issue, you don’t need to take the risk and worry about that branch and the one day that it ‘might’ fall. High winds and storms could cause branches that are damaged to fall as well and should be taken care of before it happens.

 

Makes your yard look better

 

Let’s face it; no one wants to see dead material hanging off your trees and shrubs around the landscape of your yard. When getting rid of the bad stuff that causes an eyesore you make your plants look more appealing. On top of just getting rid of the junk, the plants grow thicker and greener since they have more nutrients to delegate to their healthy parts. You can think of pruning almost like giving your trees a haircut!

 

Have a better viewLimbs can be pruned to give better views

 

Sometimes some branches tend to block a beautiful view you may be missing out on. Whether it’s a lake, cityscape, or whatever’s in the distance beyond, some limbs and branches may be blocking your sight. When you hire a professional, they can prevent trees from growing into a view-blocker and event cut down ones that already are.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let our professionals take care of all your pruning needs! Call us today at PPM Tree Service & Arbor Care, LLC to see how we can help.

7 Arborist Certifications & Qualifications

 

If you want to pursue a career as an arborist, getting certifications and qualifications are essential. Going through the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) is an excellent way to further your goals.
There are many credentials available through ISA so you will need to decide what you want out of your career. That makes selecting the right credential much easier. Remember, you must pass a separate exam based on study materials provided by ISA for each certification or qualification.

Certified Arborist

Earning this certification from ISA signifies you have an excellent general knowledge of trees. You understand their biology, maintenance practices, diagnosis methods, and how to safely work with trees. Many government entities, companies, and even individuals will seek out a tree care professional with at least this certification, ensuring they hire someone qualified.

Certified Arborist Municipal SpecialistTrees in the city require Arborists too

If you have experience working with urban trees, this certification can be a useful one to pursue. It covers not only how to manage the health of trees in cities, but also addresses establishing them in that specific environment. This is a good fit for people in positions like an urban forester, city arborist, park superintendent, tree warden, etc.

Certified Arborist Utility Specialist

As an arborist, you’ll come across situations where it’s necessary to prune trees that are nearby utility lines and poles. This certification signifies that you have specialized knowledge about managing vegetation around power lines and other utilities. This is helpful if you plan on pursuing a career in electric utility vegetation management.

 

Certified Tree Worker Climber Specialist

Tree climbing involves a certain amount of risk, both to the climber and to people, vehicles, and buildings in the area. Companies, government entities, and even private property owners feel more comfortable knowing you’re competent as a tree climber. This certification also covers first aid practices, just in case you ever need to help in an emergency.

Certified Tree Worker Aerial Lift Specialist

An aerial lift is a necessary and helpful tool in certain situations, but it can also be dangerous in the hands of someone who doesn’t know how to operate one properly. With this certification, you can prove to potential employers and customers that you won’t be putting trees, other people, buildings, etc. at unnecessary risk when operating an aerial lift.

Certified Master ArboristCertified master arborist works on tree.

To even qualify for the process to earn this certification, you must be an ISA Certified Arborist in good standing, plus you must complete several other rigorous activities. This certification is to demonstrate that you genuinely have a mastery of arborist principles and practices, showing to potential employers and customers your advanced knowledge.

Tree Risk Assessment Qualification

As an arborist, tree risk assessment is a valuable skill. The purpose of this ISA qualification is to expand your knowledge of the fundamentals of assessing tree risk. Armed with a systemic process, you can help tree owners and risk managers make a decision that promotes not only safety but also the longevity of the tree.

 

For further questions about ISA certifications and qualifications, or any other tree-related situations, contact us at PPM Tree Service & Arbor Care, LLC.

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