Friday Free For All: Certified Arborists vs Tree Trimmers

certified arborist


In today’s post, I thought that we would look at the differences between Certified Arborists and tree trimmers. Quite often, tree trimmers are just as knowledgeable as Certified Arborists, they just haven’t gone through the effort of becoming a Certified Arborist. Unfortunately, that’s not always true and once a tree is improperly pruned, it generally can’t be “undone”. With that it mind, let’s look at some of the differences between Certified Arborists and tree trimmers:

  1. Certified Arborists have taken the initiative to be certified through the International Society of Arboriculture, or the ISA for short. The test that they must take has been described as “one of the hardest tests I’ve ever sat through” by a co-worker. It requires a great deal of knowledge and years of experience, even to be eligible to sit for the test.
  2. As a condition of their certification, Certified Arborists must agree to continuing their education through classes and seminars. As in all disciplines, arboriculture is an everchanging field where advances are being made and research is being conducted. With a Certified Arborist, you can be sure that they are up-to-date on the latest information.
  3. While you may not need a Certified Arborist to drop a tree in your yard, you would be highly advised to seek one out if you have a historic or otherwise meaningful tree that you wish to keep healthy.
  4. A Certified Arborist will NEVER top your trees. A knowledgeable tree trimmer would never do it either, so if someone recommends it, you know to scratch them off the list of potential contractors immediately.
  5. Investing time and money in a Certified Arborist to care for your trees is an investment that can pay dividends. Having healthy, attractive trees on your property will raise your property value, whereas having poorly cared for or improperly pruned trees poses a significant liability to your pocketbook.


If your trees are in need of care by a professional, I hope that you will consider contacting an ISA Certified Arborist. You can use this link to find local arborists in your area. While their prices will undoubtedly be higher than that of a tree trimmer, the long term payoff to your trees and property value will more than compensate for the difference. Let me know your thoughts by leaving me a comment below or sending me an e-mail at Happy Mid-Atlantic gardening!

February 11, 2012Permalink Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *