Why Tree Work is So Expensive


For the last 3 days my brother Matt has been cutting back one of our walnut trees. Our house was built in a former walnut orchard and all of the walnut trees around here have reached the end of their natural life and are dying. Matt is a tree man, or at least he used to be. Now that he’s in his forties he prefers to sell tree equipment. Anyway, the tree he was working on was a monster. It used to shade most of the back yard until just a few years ago when the leaves got smaller and the limbs started dying.


We were all watching Matt cut this tree, and I think thankful that he doesn’t do this kind of work so much anymore.

5 thoughts on “Why Tree Work is So Expensive

  1. Hi Maya!

    Great question. We put all of the smaller branches through a “chipper” which grinds them up into small wood chips to distribute in various places around the yard. The larger logs of wood get chainsawed into 18-inch long pieces. Then we use a big ax to split the logs into pieces that would work best in a fireplace.

    After that we give away almost all of the wood to friends and neighbors who use their wood stoves or fireplaces a lot. But the wood needs to age for several months to dry out before it can be effectively used.

  2. I know that is true for the leafs. The English Walnut leafs chemically repress other plants, reducing competition and fire hazard under the host tree. I don’t know if or why that chemical would exist in the wood. The parts I cut out of this tree were all dead wood, no leafs.
    Furthermore, repressing growth and providing organic matter under your shrubs, in the landscape, is what chip compost is suppose to do. That is why shredded Redwood bark is so popular, it’s really repressive.

  3. Treework is dangerous trade and it takes years to learn. You’re paying for a skill. That is why the cost is high.

    Hi Joe, I think my brother would agree with you there. ~Elise

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