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Frequently Asked Questions
Hansen’s FAQs | Tree Care FAQs
Our plant health care specialists learn the needs of your landscape and apply management prescriptions as needed. They will scout for pests, apply treatment options judiciously, and carefully monitor the results.
I want to purchase a gift certificate for tree work for a family member or friend. How do I get one? How do they work?
Gift certificates for work from Hansen’s Tree Service is easy to get! Simply call or email us and let us know how much you’d like to gift, to whom, and if the certificate will be physical or digital.
Yes! We are available 24/7 for emergency tree care. Doesn’t matter if it’s a severe storm, or if your tree falls in the middle of the night.
Yes! You can view our certificate of insurance here. We are dedicated to the safety of our team and clients so you can rest assured that we will always have the most up-to-date insurance like worker’s compensation and general liability.
I live in a rural area & can’t take a tree down alone, but want to keep the wood. What are my options?
You can call us to remove the tree and we will perform a “drop & leave”. This means that we will cut down the tree for you and leave the debris for you to use as you will. If you have the time and equipment yourself to deal with the debris and want to keep the good wood to split into firewood, this can be a good option for you.
Tree removal is a dangerous job! It is highly recommended that you leave it to the professionals, who have the equipment and knowledge necessary to safely remove it.
Generally speaking, it takes about two business days in order for a certified arborist to make it to a home for an estimate. If you know what work you need done and can describe it to us when you call, it will make the process much more simple. For example, you have limbs on your elm tree in the front yard scraping your roof and you want them removed. Simply phone in and describe that very situation and indicate the location of tree so we can be certain that we are looking at what you want us to look at and we can estimate it for you.
You don’t need to be home if you can give us a description of what you want done and the location of the trees. We will be glad to leave you an estimate along with a brochure and our insurance documentation right on your front door. After reviewing these documents, just phone us with any questions you might have.
For emergency tree services after events like a storm, we do our best to make it to everyone who calls as quickly as possible. However, due to the staggering number of calls, it can take a day or two before we get around to each one. We always try to respond to the most severe calls first. If your tree has fallen on your home or is blocking your driveway, then rest assured that you have called the right people and we will respond promptly and get things cleaned up so that you can get back to normal as soon as possible.
Please remember: We value the safety of our employees, so we cannot send them out in rain and lightning or ice. As soon as the storm subsides, we will be there managing the damage and cleaning up the aftermath of Mother Nature.
No, it is not necessary for you to be home. We will fully go over the job to be done with the homeowner before the work is performed. If you choose to be home to watch the work you’re more than welcome to, but don’t feel that you need to take a precious vacation day off from work in order to have your trees trimmed.
If you choose to stay home and watch the work, please either stay in the safety of your home or if you must watch from outside, stay a safe distance away from all work and our ground crews. If a groundsman asks you to move, it is for your safety.
Unfortunately, not every tree company have trained arborists on staff.
When looking for a tree service with an arborist on staff, be sure to look for International Society of Arboraculture (ISA) certification. These arborists require a course of study, years of field work & an extensive exam that must be passed in order to become ISA certified. Finding an ISA certified arborist will ensure the best, most professional tree care possible. Currently, Hansen’s has 10 ISA certified arborists on staff.
Depending on what needs to be done to the tree we can still help you! We have a bucket truck that can reach over top of just about any house to access the back yard, as well as a spider lift that allows us to access tight spaces. If the tree is dead and needs to be removed, we can have a climber actually climb the tree and “piece it out”, or cut it down piece by piece. Just give us a call with the location of the tree in that hard to reach spot and we’ll come out & give you a free estimate on getting the work done!
The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) was founded in 1924 and has served the tree care industry for over ninety years as a scientific and educational non-profit organization. The ISA supports tree care around the world and is dedicated to the care and preservation of shade and ornamental trees.
This organization continues to be a dynamic medium through which arborists around the world share their experiences and knowledge for the benefit of society. Aligned on many fronts with other green organizations, ISA is working hard to foster a better understanding of trees and tree care through research and the education of professionals as well as global efforts to inform tree care consumers.
Plant health care (PHC) focuses on developing and maintaining healthy plants so that they are more resistant to pests and environmental stresses. PHC is a holistic concept that considers proper planting, site selection, maintenance, and the overall goals of the plant owner.
Applying plant health care to your landscape can pay dividends. Improper planting, poor soils, poor tree structure, potential pest issues, are some of the items on the endless list of things a PHC specialist may find in your landscape. A PHC specialist may identify current or potential problems while there is still time to intervene.
The cost of a plant health care program is dependent on the plants in your landscape as well as your personal goals. At Hansen’s, we provide an initial visit to go over your landscape, discuss your needs and goals, and prescribe management options accordingly.
Anyone with trees and shrubs on their property—commercial or residential—is a good candidate for plant health care.
Yes! Just like training our children as they grow, pruning trees at a young age (and small size) will help them achieve a balanced, strong structure. For the larger trees that have never been pruned before, we focus on safety – the removal of dead/dying branches, diseased branches, and those that have the potential to fail and cause property damage.
Mulching has an array of benefits. Mulch insulates roots in the winter, keeps roots cool in the summer, retains soil moisture, prevents weeds in the landscape, supplies nutritional benefits to the soil, and makes the landscape look great!
Our sales staff will develop pruning objectives with you prior to the work being performed. At Hansen’s we are dedicated to safe, correct, and scientifically proven methods for pruning your trees. We never engage in unsafe practices like topping.
I got my trees treated for pests/diseases last year. Do I need to get them treated again this year?
It depends on your plant health care program, the problem at hand, and the prescribed treatment that was employed. Some applications may need to be reapplied each year, like treatments for aphids, while others like Dutch Elm can be every three. Otherwise, annual inspections are recommended, and your arborist will advise the best health care schedule for your landscape.
If your tree was removed because of EAB, you can safely burn the wood. However, the wood must be kept at the location where the tree was removed and cannot be transported more than 50 miles from that site. This is designed to prevent EAB spread.
This depends on your needs and goals. Multiple inspections per year to a single inspection every five years is a common range. Call a Hansen’s ISA Certified Arborist if there is cause for immediate concern like insects, disease, or damage. This is especially true after a storm or your trees are at risk of species-specific problems like EAB and Dutch elm disease. It’s always best to be safe and get any problems caught early.
If your trees are damaged in a storm, the first step is to call your power company if there are downed lines or power outages. Always watch out for falling branches and never approach downed wiring—live or otherwise. Then, call Hansen’s Tree Service for emergency tree care. We are specially trained and insured to perform removal services safely.
A TCIA certified Tree Care Safety Professional is trained in tree care safety for a safer work environment. It also means that you are getting professional, ethical tree care company that has been inspected by TCIA for proper business practices, professional employees, quality service and customer satisfaction.
When an arborist is ISA Tree Risk Qualified, it means that they have undergone a voluntary qualification program where they earn recognition as a tree care professional with specialized knowledge of tree risk assessments. They promote the safety of not only the tree, but the surrounding property and people. They must pass a written exam, as well as a training course and performance-based assessment. Credential holders must be recertified every five years.
When we say our compost is STA certified, it means that it follows the U.S. Seal of Testing Assurance Program for quality. Our compost is regularly tested for quality and to ensure that it contains the proper nutrients for optimal plant growth.
One of the first things you should look for is a certificate of insurance that shows that they are fully insured tree to do the job. Then, check their professional certifications through organizations like the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) that shows they have gone through the correct training and education to safely perform the job. Tree care is a dangerous job so the right tree care company will have the right equipment for the job and the certifications to use it.
If you suspect your ash tree is infected with Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) call Hansen’s today.
Tree care is a dangerous job, being one of the most dangerous jobs in the United States. Professionals regularly encounter slippery conditions, dangerous heights, electrical wires, and dangerous equipment. If it’s dangerous for us, think about how dangerous it is for you! Hansen’s Tree Service committed to the highest industry standards to assure everyone’s protection and safety, and a job performed to your satisfaction. So leave the tree care to the professionals.
Tree science has greatly improved over the years. Yes, years ago it was a common practice to top trees but today we know that topping a tree is bad for its health. Tree topping weakens the tree and leaves it susceptible to a host of problems like disease, pest infestations, and decay.
Tree topping is never an acceptable tree trimming technique!
Can a young Bald Cypress tree planted this past fall be transplanted to a different location in the same yard this time of year?
It should be fine to move this tree. It is doubtful that it has begun to root into its current home at this early stage. In general, you never want to move a tree when growth has started pushing out to the tips, so move it soon for best results. If you would like further assistance, please phone the office at 636-379-1830 & we will be glad to put you in touch with one of our professional arborists.
No! You should never “fill” a tree with concrete or anything else. This will only cause more injury to the tree, leading to more problems like dead wood spreading decay to other parts of the tree.
Call an arborist to evaluate the structural stability of the tree. It could be a dead or hazardous tree and if so, it should be removed as soon as possible due to the risk they could pose to your home or people in the area.
My pear tree blew down in a storm & I had no idea that my insurance wouldn’t cover everything. Any tips going forward?
These are steps to take before and after any casualty loss to your trees and landscape. Taking these steps can improve the value of your trees and help protect you from being held liable. Take pictures of trees and other landscape plants now while they are healthy and vigorous. This makes “before and after” comparisons easier and will expedite the processing of insurance and/or IRS claims.
Also, check your insurance. In most cases, the amount of an allowable claim for any one tree or shrub is a maximum of $500. Keep accurate records of your landscape and real estate appraisals on any losses for insurance, legal, and income tax purposes. Consult your local Arborist or Plant Health Care professional at every stage in the life cycle of your landscape (planning, planting, care) and to make sure you do not suffer needless financial loss when a casualty strikes. Remember: You are responsible for the care and maintenance of the trees on your property!
The condition sounds like scale. It would be best to have an arborist come look at it for sure because that is the only way to be certain the condition you are dealing with. If it is scale, then there are sprays that are an effective remedy.
Is the presence of red ants living in a cedar tree a bad thing? Are they damaging to the tree or co-existing?
If those ants are actually carpenter ants, then they probably are making the tree their home and it could be causing structural integrity problems. Use an insecticide to abate the problem before it worsens or call your local tree service to diagnose and handle the problem for you. Call an arborist if the tree shows any signs of decline.
Yes! Well cared for, landscaped properties are 5-20% more valuable on average than non-landscaped home sites.
It is the homeowner’s responsibility. This is called Duty of Care and keeping your trees maintained and healthy will help protect you from being held liable if an accident occurs.
If a cedar has multiple woodpecker holes in the trunk does it mean that it is diseased & will die?
In many cases, woodpecker holes are only a cosmetic issue but it can be a precursor to insect & disease problems. The tree should compartmentalize on its own to protect itself, so no effort is needed to assist the tree at this point. But you should keep an eye on it to see if the woodpecker persists and the tree shows any signs of decline. If so, then contact your local arborist for a solution.
I would like to plant a tree that is fast growing, but not as brittle as a silver maple. Can you suggest something?
Most trees that grow fast (Tulip Poplars, Silver Maples) are going to be softer and weaker trees than slower growing trees like large oaks. From a hardwood standpoint (long lasting tree and relatively quick to grow), your best option would be a Pin Oak. The Pin Oak is probably the fastest growing and lowest maintenance hardwood tree.
You should also perhaps consider a medium growth tree like an Ash variety or a Harder Maple like the Red Sunset or Autumn Blaze Maple. Go to a local nursery where the staff is qualified to help direct you on this tree selection as well. You will need to consider light, water, disease and pest hardiness (for example, an ash is susceptible to Emerald Ash Borer) and how close the tree will be to the house.
The cause is likely root disturbance & damage along with soil compaction from heaving equipment being moved over the ground during construction. When soil gets compacted, the oxygen from the soil is lessened because it is literally being squeezed out. This lack of oxygen can cause stress to the tree & often time death.
Many times, the full effect of construction work can last anywhere from 5-7 years. Because of this, it is important when planning any construction near trees that the critical root zone of the tree is considered. If you are going to be operating very heavy equipment near a tree, it is best to determine ahead of time if you think the tree can be saved or if it will become a causality of construction. There are other factors to consider, but the critical root zone is basically the drip line of the tree. No construction activity should occur within that drip line of the tree canopy. If you remain unsure, please call Hansen’s for a certified arborist to take a look at the trees at your desired location.
I have a heavily wooded, 5 acre lot and I want clear about an acre of land for a home. What are my options?
First of all, make sure that you are willing to lose all of those trees. Then, the site will be planned before construction in order to keep the trees you want to keep safe. Trees don’t deal well with the stress brought on by construction, so if there are prized trees on the plot of land you want to clear, be sure to mark them and make it very clear to your builder that you do not want the root zone of those vital trees disturbed.
Each site also has factors such as location and accessibility to take into consideration when planning grinding and land clearing . It might be possible to take down these trees and then use one of our large mobile tub grinders to mulch up the debris; a relatively quick method. If the location won’t allow large equipment, then a tree crew will come and work for a few days in order to take down the trees and chip them up with a smaller machine called a chipper.
Phone our office at 636-379-1830 and request a consultation with an arborist before you begin this building process to ensure that you are going to be able to save the trees that you want to and that the rest of your clearing project can be managed in an efficient and professional manner.
As soon as possible! If you suspect a tree is dead, call an arborist to evaluate its risk and then make arrangements to have it removed immediately if it poses the possibility of striking a home, car, or passers-by. If the tree is in no danger of striking anything if it falls then you would be safe to remove it within a reasonable time, approximately six months. It is important to remove dead trees because if the tree died from a spreadable disease, then you want to remove that diseased tree before the infection can find a new host in nearby trees.
Sweet Gum trees are beautiful, but they do have the gum balls which can pose a walking hazard. There is a spray called Florel that can be used to combat the balls but it has been met with limited success at best. In order to achieve any amount of success, you must catch the tree in a very narrow window of opportunity and you cannot use the spray in windy conditions. This is why it is so important that you consider all aspects of a tree before planting.
Removing the tree would be a last resort and then only after all other solutions had been exhausted or if the location of the tree and the number of gum balls was so large that there was a human risk of someone falling and being seriously hurt.
Deadwooding is the pruning process of removing dead limbs from the tree that might be dangerous, diseased or targets of pest infestation. This is an important part of tree maintenance that helps preserve the health and integrity of your trees.
Stump grinding is removal of the tree stump through mechanical means. Stump grinders break up the stump by chipping it into mulch sized pieces with very sharp, rotating teeth. A pile of wood chips remains after the process is finished, which can be quite large.
Wood chips left on the ground after stump grinding can be pushed into the open hole created by the grind. Those chips get swept back into the hole and tapped down in order to help level off the newly stump ground area. This can help reduce serious injury should someone happen to be walking over the lawn and not notice a large hole where a tree once was.
Often, there are more wood chips than can fit in the hole. You will have the option in your proposal to have Hansen’s remove this excess if you desire. All usable debris is then recycled into organic mulch at our facility.
Over time, the wood chips in the stump hole will begin to disintegrate, so it may be necessary for the home owner to continue placing more of the remaining wood chips into the hole in order to fill it. We highly recommend to homeowners that it is a good idea to follow this settling process with some top soil & grass seed in order to completely cover the hole & make it safe for any lawn foot traffic.
If you have any mover questions on stump grinding, be sure to ask one of our arborists.
When winterizing your fig tree, the first thing to remember is that you don’t want the root system to freeze. Wrapping the tree in burlap is okay, but wrapping in white plastic is best (not dark or clear plastic) as it offers more protection from the cold. Before you wrap your tree, make sure that the warm weather is gone. Wrapping your tree too early or in dark or clear plastic can cause heat and humidity to collect and lead to disease. Be sure to remove all leaf litter and old fruit: This will reduce disease activity.
An arborist is trained in tree care and has the proper training and equipment to work in and with trees. However, there is a big difference between your average arborist and an ISA certified arborist.
Arborists who have been ISA certified have a minimum of three years of field work in the tree industry, completed a course of study, and passed a comprehensive exam to attain certification. In order to stay ISA certified, the arborist must always be involved in continuing education as the certification requires a certain number of CEU’s (Continuing Education Credits) be obtained each year. This insures the homeowner that this person is trained on the latest science and technology with regard to tree care.
Our Trumpet tree is dropping leaves & not blooming. I cleared away a suffocating vine, but will the tree come back as lush as last year?
If your Trumpet tree’s leaves are dropping and not blooming, it is important to determine if it suffering from a pest infestation. If not and the problem continues, it could be a soil pH problem, over-watering, or planted in the wrong location.
Contacting your local tree care professional will help you diagnose the problem and offer a solution.
As long as they appear healthy and are thriving, then there is really no need to feed your trees. Feeding becomes important when a tree is planted in poor conditions and is not doing well. If the tree is doing well then it is likely very happy with where it is planted & it’s living conditions.
A likely cause is Cedar Apple Rust, a fungal disease that begins its life cycle on junipers before spreading to crab apple and other susceptibility trees. Symptoms include bright yellow or orange spots on leaves, swollen corky gall on twigs, and large yellow or orange spots on the fruit. Contacting your local arborist for plant health care and diagnosis will help you determine what is causing your trees to look ill and offer a treatment plan if needed.
The lack of moisture from June through August causes burning bushes to become dry and brittle. This lack of moisture also causes them to defoliate early. To prevent your burning bushes from losing their leaves early, water your plants whenever the soil feels dry.
Your tree’s leaves turning yellow could be due to a condition called iron chlorosis. This condition occurs when iron in the soil is either deficient or unavailable to trees. As observed, it can turn your tree’s leaves yellow, but it can also scorch the leaves and turn them brown as they die.
It’s important to remember that there are many other causes of leaf discoloration so it is best to call an arborist to determine the exact cause.
The best time to prune your trees depends very much on the species of the tree. When in doubt over what time of year would be best for the tree species in your particular yard, a call to a certified arborist will clear everything up. When pruning, it is always important to remember that all pruning cuts should be made outside of the branch bark collar to ensure that the pruning wound will heal correctly. When choosing a tree service, ask if work is performed to American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards. This will ensure that all pruning cuts made are done according to the most widely accepted & accredited tree care guidelines.
When choosing a new tree for your property, there are many factors to take into consideration such as:
- Available space
- Shade on the east or west side of your home
Some trees such as sweet gum trees are very beautiful & grow well in our area. However, remember that these trees have those somewhat annoying gum balls that drop off every year & it can cause a foot hazard. Another example is the Bradford pear, which is considered an invasive species in Missouri. An arborist or nursery can be very helpful in helping you choose the right tree for you and your property. The main thing to remember is to do your research: Don’t be in a hurry to pick a tree. You will be living with it for many years.