DON’T Make This Tree Pruning Mistake: Q’s to Ask a Professional

This is the third blog in a three part series. Visit part one (on why tree topping is harmful) and two (on when and how much is appropriate to trim) here.

So, you’re ready to prune your trees?  Not so fast!

Here at TreePeople, we strongly recommend hiring a professional tree trimming service to ensure your trees are healthy and properly pruned. If you’re thinking about hiring a professional, make sure you ask these four questions before they get near your trees!

1. Are you licensed and bonded?

If so, ask to see a copy of their documents. This ensures that they are covered by insurance!

2. Are you ISA certified?  

Ask for their ISA certification number. The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) certifies arborists – testing them on pruning and other tree care practices. Don’t be afraid to ask if the crew is trained in ISA practices and supervised by a certified arborist while on the job. To see samples of their work, ask for references!

Ready to hire an ISA Certified Arborist? Find one here.

3. Are you a TCIA (Tree Care Industry Association) Accredited company?

The TCIA program is another certification that can help identify a trustworthy service. However, TCIA specializes in accreditation for companies, not individuals. It ensures tree trimming services  have proper tree care knowledge and follow appropriate business practices!

For a full directory of TCIA accredited businesses, visit this website.

Since trees provide homeowners with plenty of benefits, hiring a professional is a worthwhile investment ensuring that your trees will continue to be healthy and happy!

4. Do you top trees?

This is a trick question, but a good one to ask. If they top, don’t hire them. And if they are ISA or TCIA certified and top trees, report them.

And once you do hire them, make sure you get in writing what they are going to do–specifically, “remove branch “A”, remove all dead wood, etc.” Be sure to take plenty of before photos! They should know that you are serious about proper tree pruning.

Ready to learn more? Visit our website to learn all about proper tree care and maintenance!


  1. Hoover Tree Services   •  

    Thanks for sharing! This was a great article. Thanks for taking time to share all the tree pruning mistakes. We have a small business down in Alabama and we get asked this all the time. Will refer our customers to your blog! If you’re interested in checking us out, please visit Tree Services Hoover AL

  2. G Cool   •  

    I really appreciate how you encourage people to challenge a potential tree care expert, well done!

  3. CJ   •  

    Tree topping is a habit that I hope goes away soon. It doesn’t look good and I hope people start to realize that it’s no good for the tree!

  4. Bob   •  

    Love the information, in this blog. Tree pruning is a very important part of overall health of your trees. Making sure you do it correctly is very important. At Dubuque Tree Service we work with our customers to make sure things are done correctly with the overall long term health of the tree and/or surrounding trees in mind.

  5. Joe   •  

    Thanks for the great content. Can’t wait to read more of your works.

  6. rilly   •  

    Appreciate that you bring up topping trees, most homeowners who choose to do it themselves don’t realize they could actually be damaging their tree. Will definitely use this as a source for future conversations with homeowners. Thanks a ton.

  7. Alex Tree and Garden Services   •  

    I have enjoyed reading the information about commercial cleaning and maintenance. Really, entire discussion is more helpful and all the tips are more effective too. I am very glad to go through this kind of helpful article. Thanks for sharing a nice article.

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