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Frequently Asked Questions

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Browse through the questions and answers below

What is a Plant Health Care program?

A Plant Health Care (PHC) program includes a series of visits by a technician to prevent and treat problems with the plant material on your landscape. For instance, a technician might control an insect infestation with a horticultural oil application or improve overall plant health utilizing a custom-blended fertilization treatment. PHC programs do not include lawn care services.

The exact role of a PHC technician is determined by the arborist caring for a property. Arborists may prescribe a very specific series of treatments to carry out over the course of the year. Almstead also offers PHC Monitoring programs, which give our technicians the opportunity to examine the trees and shrubs on a property and treat conditions on an as-needed basis. Learn more about PHC monitoring programs here.

What happens if it rains after my trees and shrubs have been treated?

Our foliar applications to trees and shrubs take between 20 to 30 minutes to dry. After that, rain will not harm these applications. If it rains before this time has passed, please call your local office to reschedule the application.

Some applications, like soil drenches of custom-blended fertilizers and compost teas, actually benefit from rainy conditions. Other applications, like injections made directly into the sapstream of a tree, are entirely unaffected by rain.

Do I need to wait before going outside after a Plant Health Care visit?

For the best results, plant material should be left alone for the first 30 minutes to allow for drying time, even when the treatment is organic. If there is an area of your property that you should avoid, it will be visibly marked for your attention.

How safe are the products you use?

With the exception of products applied directly into the sapstream of a tree, any synthetic products we use are highly diluted and applied well below toxicity thresholds. These materials are registered by the EPA at the same level as many household cleaners. Only state-licensed technicians perform our tree, shrub and lawn applications.

When will my Plant Health Care visits take place?

To find out the range of dates for each of your Plant Health Care visits, please refer to your Plant Health Care contract. A copy of your contract is always available through your local branch office. We’re also glad to call ahead regarding the specific date of each visit upon request.

How do I cancel a Plant Health Care service?

All cancellations of service(s) must be submitted in writing to your local branch office at least 24 hours in advance of application. You will receive a confirmation of your cancellation.

Do I have to be home when you do the work?

In most cases, no. We only need to be able to get onto your property and bring in equipment if necessary. A detailed report is left outlining exactly what services were performed. If you would like to be present while work is being performed, we will try to accommodate your schedule. It is our goal to perform tree services safely and efficiently with a minimum of inconvenience to the client.

When will my stump be ground? As soon as the tree is removed?

Tree removal and stump grinding are two very different jobs requiring two separate crews and types of equipment. As such, these services will be performed on separate days.

When is the best time to prune my trees and shrubs?

The majority of pruning work we do can be performed anytime. Factors such as the lifecycles of certain harmful insects or diseases may influence an arborist’s decision on when to prune. Pruning ornamental trees and shrubs often requires particular timing to best influence flowering and fruit production. Winter is actually a very smart time to prune because the environment is sterile and the frozen ground makes it possible to move heavy equipment onto areas (such as lawns) that would otherwise be damaged.

What is the difference between an arborist and a certified arborist?

Arborists are trained professionals that are knowledgeable and equipped to provide proper tree care. They are specially trained to provide a variety to services to maintain trees. ISA Certified Arborists are individuals who have achieved a level of knowledge in the art and science of tree care through at least three years of experience and have passed a comprehensive examination. They are also required to continue their education in order to maintain their certification, ensuring their knowledge is updated on the latest arboriculture techniques. Certification provides a measurable assessment of an individual’s knowledge and competence required to provide proper tree care. All Almstead arborists are ISA Certified Arborists. Our arborists in Connecticut are also licensed by the Connecticut Tree Protective Association.

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