Tree Services – Dave Ford Tree Care

Our comprehensive range of tree services are undertaken across Surrey, West Sussex and South London by our fully qualified and experienced tree surgeons and arborists include: tree felling and removal, tree pruning, tree crown reduction, crown lifting, tree crown thinning and tree pollarding.

Tree Inspections

It takes a fully-qualified, experienced arborist or tree surgeon to undertake a professional, detailed tree inspection.

Our specialists will carry out a ground inspection and, where appropriate, an aerial inspection in order to report on:

  • Weak forks
  • Cavities
  • Fungal fruiting bodies
  • Storm damage
  • Bracing
  • Habitats of all wildlife e.g. nesting birds, insects and bats etc.
  • Biodiversirty
  • Disease

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Tree Felling and Removal

When a tree needs to be removed or felled, it is crucial that the work is carried out professionally by a skilled tree surgeon or arborist.

Felling a tree requires precision, with accurate direction to avoid damage to property and other plants which may be around. Typically large trees will be ‘dismantled’, taken apart piece by piece and in some cases, each piece is then lowered by rope to ensure that they come down gently for maximum protection of the surroundings.
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Tree pruning involves removing parts of the tree for cosmetic reasons or because that part has become diseased, damaged, dead or dangerous.

Anyone can cut a branch off a tree, but to do so safely whilst protecting the health of the tree requires a professional tree surgeon or arborist with expertise in tree biology.

All cuts to a tree are damaging, but poorly executed cuts can lead to decay and disease within the tree. We carefully examine the structure of the tree and branches before pruning to ensure the tree recovers well from the ‘wound’.

Formative Pruning takes place on young trees to assist and train them to develop into a stronger and well-shaped tree. It can avoid the need for future remedial work by avoiding biomechanical features that can become dangerous later in the life of the tree.

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Arborist using harness to climb tree

Crown Lifting

Crown lifting is a specialised pruning technique that removes lower branches of mature trees to lift the canopy or crown of the tree.

It can increase the clearance beneath the tree for buildings, vehicles and pedestrians and open up the view. Our arborist teams will assess the minimum number of wounds necessary to the main stem to achieve the desired outcome, thereby reducing the risk of disease and maximising the health of the tree.
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Crown Reduction

Crown reduction pruning is often recommended when a tree has outgrown its available space and its overall size and shape need be reduced.

Each species of tree responds differently to this kind of pruning so it is important to speak to an arborist who can advise on your tree’s suitability for pruning and how to carry out the work as sympathetically as possible to minimise physiological stress on the tree, maximise the time between prunings and maintain the good appearance of the tree.

Crown reductions reduce the bulk of the canopy and therefore minimise the wind-sail effect which can be beneficial in trees with structural defects.

If a tree requires regular crown reduction it may become unsafe over time. Our experts will be able to advise you when the time comes to remove the tree and replant with a more suitable tree.

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Crown Thinning

Tree Crown Thinning is a method of pruning selected stems and branches evenly across the tree canopy to decrease the wind-sail effect and maintain an even density of foliage which will allow sunlight and air into the tree’s crown and create a balanced structure.

Our arborists may recommend crown thinning rather than crown reduction, depending on the species of tree in cases where the tree is blocking natural light for the customer, as it allows dappled light to pass through the tree.
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Arborists pointing

Tree Pollarding

Tree Pollarding has a long tradition in the British landscape and is a useful pruning method to control a younger tree’s future size and shape.

Pollarding is typically carried out annually in late winter or early spring and would need to be carried out every couple of years to prevent problems. It is widely used on street trees to prevent problems with overhead cables. The technique involves cutting back the crown of the tree to the trunk to allow new branches to sprout from the cuts. Pollarding is suitable for:

  • Ash (Fraxinus)
  • Common lime (Tilia × europaea)
  • Elm (Ulmus)
  • Elder (Sambucus)
  • Gum (Eucalyptus)
  • London plane (Platanus × hispanica)
  • Mulberry (Morus)
  • Oak (Quercus)
  • Some species of Acer (A. negundo and its cultivars)
  • Tulip tree (Liriodendron)

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Reducing away from Buildings

When we are asked to assess a tree that has grown too close to a building, or poses a threat to an outdoor structure, it can often be advisable to reduce the tree around the building.

This involves the careful pruning of foliage and smaller branches to leave a clear gap between the tree and the building and may need to be repeated every couple of years depending on tree growth.
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Deadwood in Trees

Deadwood in a tree canopy can be made up of diseased or broken branches and can represent a risk to people or property, although this is unusual.

If the tree crown deadwood poses no risk, then we would recommend leaving the deadwood where it is, as it forms an important part of tree ecology and provides a good habitat for birds and insects. If the deadwood is hazardous and cannot be stabilised it will need to be removed and we would then recommend the creation of a habitat pile at ground level (if you have the space) to provide alternative accommodation for the insects. Our arborists will assess and advise on the best course of action on a case-by-case basis.
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