About Trees – Kent Tree Surgeons


Need a tree surgeon that can follow spec

Tree Maintenance

Need a tree surgeon that can follow spec

Need a tree surgeon that can follow spec

Sometimes we all like to think we know best, we are guilty of that. Sometimes we have to accept that someone else knows better. This happened at a job recently. Our client had employed a Consultant Arboriculturalist to survey the estate of trees. We were tasked with carrying out the works on several trees and keeping to spec. Thus the title Need a tree surgeon that can follow spec

NO big deal

Yes, it’s true that following spec handed down by well qualified consultants isn’t a big deal at all. Sometimes, however it does’t make for an easy time. This is when other – no so committed arborists and companies interpret the spec. in their own way. Generally with a view of speeding things up and making them easier.

What was so tricky?

The spec. really reinforced the mantra of need a tree surgeon that can follow spec. This TPO’d tree (indeed the entire estate is TPO’d pretty much) was to: Reduce crown of tree by cutting back from branch tips by 2-2.5m ensuring wounds are no greater than 75mm and a even leaf density is left upon completion (paraphrased). Not a simple as it sounds. This was a lapsed pollard with cavities, dead wood and generally all the stuff that make tree climbing difficult present. There was not an option for a MEWP as access was tight and the ground conditions (tarmac) was questionable.

Rope and harness time then.

Yes, Arborist Dan climbed the tree using double and single rope technique and managed to ensure that he pruned the tree to spec. to growth points. He insured no cuts were greater than 75mm and that an even density of growth was left upon completion. Out of interest the dense area to the bottom right is another tree behind the one we worked on.


I find myself feeling a little bit paternal to the team, I want them to know I have their back, just as I’m exposed letting them be the face of the company, I’m also there for them. I’ve had people before with personal problems at home, difficult family life, tricky ex girlfriends and I’ve tried hard to support and understand. In the past I’ve enjoyed the fact that I’m a Boss and have lads on site to do the hard work. I’ve rocked up in the morning issued the job sheets and left the them to it, truth is whilst trying not to interfere with their way of running the job it just comes across as me not being interested which is far from the truth. My desire to not micro-manage, constantly be calling for progress reports or be Alpha male had been conceived as me just not giving a damn. This is easily changed; I started to go out on site with the team more often. Yes I got under their feet and tried to impart knowledge (that they already know) but at least on those days we are all in it together. I also realised how much of the banter I’d been missing. We also try to have regular tool-box talks. Whilst a bit American and touchy feelythey are really beneficial – team members feel valued and able to raise concerns regarding kit, jobs, timescales etc.

Sub Contractors

Getting subbies in brings a whole new ball game. In truth I feel for sub contractors, these people work HARD! Face it, you’re paying your subbie easily upwards of £160 per day, you’re going want you pound of flesh. I’ve tried to resist this urge, generally they do come in on larger jobs, and so it’s very nature is that these are harder days in fact the whole team works harder on these days. The reason you pay them more? No holiday, no sick, no pension, their PPE, their tools and so on. That’s their risk not yours. It’s not an excuse to load them up. When they are working with us they are part of our team, not some pit pony to be worked and worked and worked. This approach has worked for me, subbies want to come in for me, they’ll change stuff around for us in their diaries and my view is work more conscientiously for us. My experience has shown subbies to be amazing professionals who perform day in day out, learn how different companies work and adjust accordingly, they are worth the money, treat them well. Some may say it’s crazy but when we have subbies in I’m quite happy for the whole team to job and knock.

No expert

I’m really no expert, this is my take on trying to manage people, I’ve never brought in to the school of thought that “there’s plenty more where they came from”mentality this builds no trust or appreciation. Like clients it’s much easier to keep existing employees ones that keep finding new ones. Treat people well, understand that they will clock off and not think about work to the next day, and take them for a pint on a Friday – sorted