Besides just keeping me in beans, tree work has been the best job for me in oh so many ways! More than just a challenge for an acrophobic guy like me, it is a constant learning process, coupled with working on, to me, one of the most stately organisms on the planet.
Times have sure changed since I first started climbing almost 43 years ago!
Over that time span, the “tools of the trade” have morphed with the technological advancements, making very difficult tasks much easier. The best aspect of this is weight, or better yet, the lack thereof. What used to weigh pounds, now weighs ounces, making things easier for an old fart like me. Lighter is faster!
Want to know what the roots on a tree look like? Operate a stump grinder for a few years and you will be awestruck at what was actually holding that tree up all those years. Successfully pulling a tree out of a vicious downward spiral has been a highlight for me and a feeling I can’t quite express in words. Pruning that perfect (insert name of tree here) and then looking up at it as I am stowing gear back into the truck just makes me glow with pride!
Driving by a tree I have taken care of for decades is like visiting an old friend.
Driving by a stump of a tree that for whatever reason I had to remove years ago reminds me to collect acorns from some giant oak to “renegade” plant somewhere that no one will notice, until it is too late, HA!
Passing by a jobsite where another tree care outfit is removing a giant dead “hairball” tree makes me think: “Better you than me pal, been there, done that. Be safe.”
Having a client call me for a “look-see” at a tree I have worked on for many years is a drop-everything-and-rush-over visit.
Seeing a tree that had been condemned because it was in the way of “development,” and saved because the community rallied around me and together we shamed the public entity into retaining the tree is a huge “winning” moment for sure!
Watching a tree go through its yearly routine of waking up, getting dressed and going to work encourages me to do the same, just on a more frequent schedule!
When a new client calls for the first time, it is showtime, it is time to reflect on ALL my past experience and during the initial inspection, try to figure out what has taken place over the years of that tree’s life, and the best way to improve the conditions that surround the situation. Many times, nothing “needs” to be done and I tell them to just enjoy the tree, take two aspirin, and call me in the morning…
Damn, I love my job!
As always, plant high and often…