Be careful with post-fire tree care and cleanup, DNR advises property owners

House survives Taylor Bridge Fire
This house near Cle Elem, and many of the property owner’s mature trees, survived the Taylor Bridge Fire. Photo: Jessica Payne/DNR.

The recent Taylor Bridge Fire in eastern Washington wreaked havoc on many landscape trees, but DNR advises caution in dealing with tree damage.

Take care when removing or pruning trees after a wildfire. Hiring the wrong contractor to do the job might prove expensive in the long run. Arborists will be in great demand for the next several weeks as property owners clean up after this fire.

Tips for finding a tree service

Here are some tips for finding a tree service company to deal with downed or damaged trees from the aftermath of storms:

  • Hire a company that is licensed, bonded, insured and employs International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) certified arborists. Although Washington requires tree service companies to register with the state, they are not required to follow proper pruning standards. They don’t even have to demonstrate knowledge of tree pruning to obtain a license.
  • Look for an arborist whose name and company are familiar to your community, even if that means waiting longer for service.
  • Beware of people who go door-to-door offering to prune trees or remove damage; their low prices could prove costly. Most reputable companies have business cards, truck signs, and even uniforms that represent a professional level of service.
  • Ask for references, and take your time to select a reputable company. Avoid hiring anyone who will ‘top’ a tree.

Beware of any contractor who wants to top your trees. Topping – removing large branches and tops of trees – creates future hazards.

The Oregon Department of Forestry shares several tips that can help you find out if your trees need first aid or if they can even be saved.

Find ISA-certified arborists in your area on the website of the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter

One thought on “Be careful with post-fire tree care and cleanup, DNR advises property owners

Comments are closed