December 2017

Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria caused devastation through Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico.  Many people lost their homes, their vehicles, and many possessions.  Thankfully, insurance is often available to help victims piece some of their belongings back together.  Unfortunately, this does not include the millions of trees that were destroyed in many of these cities’ forests, parks, and homes.

There are many ways you can help your trees to heal and regrow after a natural disaster.  The first step is to assess the damage.  Safety is very important, as heavy winds and rain can cause many dangerous situations.  Some fallen trees and branches may require a professional arborist to help remove the debris.  Remember, cleanup can be hazardous, even for professionals.

When using a chainsaw, make sure to only use it on the ground.  Hire professionals to cut limbs still attached to the tree.  Trees can often uproot underground pipes and damage power lines, which increases the probability of electrocution.  If suspected, call the electric company and your utilities to handle the cleanup.  

If there is a tree on your property that could still be saved, it’s best to consider hiring a professional arborist.  An arborist can be a very worthwhile investment to restore the trees to health.  Beware of scammers, though, and make sure to do a thorough check on the qualifications of the arborists to insure that they will not cause any further damage to your trees.  

Are there trees on your property that were damaged in one of the hurricanes?

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For many the Holiday season is a time to decorate your home, property and landscaping with colorful lighting arrangements. Here are a few tips to make your home the envy of the neighborhood without going full Clark Griswald from National Lampoons in the process.

Start Small – Start with just a few strand and see how it looks, you may not need to add too many depending on how it looks

Stay Safe – Only use lights that have the UL label. This is the Underwriters Laboratories lights and are designed specifically for outdoor use.

Use a Sturdy Ladder – and get someone to hold the ladder for you especially when lighting your big oak trees in your yard and having to reach for the long branches

Update any Rigging – get rid of all the old rusty nails, screws and clips from last year. There are many new options that will not damage your trees or rooftops.

Check your lights – before you climb up and down on the ladder for hours, make sure the lights work.

Let it shine – Now that you have safely decorated, you can sit back with friends and family and enjoy the fruits of your labor.