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What Is Tree Surgery And What Does a Tree Surgeon Do?

Tree surgeon dismantling a tree

Tree surgery involves a wide range of tasks related to tree care, including pruning, shaping, and removing trees. A tree surgeon may also be needed to diagnose and treat tree diseases, and to provide guidance on caring for trees.

Tree surgeons use a variety of specialised tools, such as chainsaws, ropes, and harnesses, to climb trees and safely carry out their work. They also use heavy machinery such as wood chippers, stump grinders and cranes to remove trees and branches from the area.

Why is tree surgery important?

Tree surgery is important because it helps to maintain the health and safety of trees. A tree may be dead, dying or diseased and so a tree surgeon would be needed to either remove the whole tree or make it safe by removing the necessary branches. They can also prune to help to promote healthy growth and prevent potential hazards.

What kind of work do tree surgeons do?

Some of the key techniques and practices involved in tree surgery are:

Tree pruning involves removing dead, damaged, or diseased branches from a tree to keep a tree safe, prevent the spread of disease and promote healthy growth. Proper pruning can help to maintain a tree's shape, size, reduce the risk of falling branches and promote better overall health. Beware of excessive pruning, such as topping or lopping, as this can often kill a tree.


Shaping involves the careful manipulation of a tree's growth to achieve a desired form or aesthetic effect. This may involve trimming or training branches to grow in a certain direction or removing unwanted branches to create a more open canopy. We sometimes have customers wanting extensive shaping, so as to form a clearly defined or geometrical shape, this is actually the practice of Topiary and often the services of a landscape gardener are more appropriate.

In some cases, a tree may need to be removed due to disease, damage, proximity to structures or other factors. Tree surgeons are trained to determine the best method of tree removal and do so safely and efficiently using specialised equipment and techniques.

Cabling and bracing:

Cabling and bracing are techniques used to support weak or damaged branches or trunks. This involves the use of cables or braces to reinforce the structure of the tree and reduce the risk of failure.

Stump grinding is the process of removing a tree stump from the ground using a specialised machine. This can be done to improve the appearance of a property or to prevent tripping hazards.

Tree health care involves assessing the health of trees and identifying any problems. Many tree surgeons carry out inspection and offer tree reports and surveys which assess the overall health of the tree and identifies whether there is any need for remedial or maintenance work.

Hopefully this gives you a good idea of what tree surgery involves and the types of services tree surgeons can offer. At The Tree Man we offer all of these services, so if you are based in the South Devon area and would like a free quote, then please get in touch.

If you would like a very rough idea of how much these services might cost, please take a look at our price guide.


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