Monitoring Programs

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The individualized care and attention that each tree and shrub receives as part of a PHC Monitoring program is an immense benefit to any landscape.

Disease control Inspecting a leaf to identify an insect problem.

For effective long term landscape care, our arborists often recommend Plant Health Care (PHC) Monitoring programs. These programs consist of a specific number of property visits that include soil care and other prescribed treatments as well as on-the-spot insect and disease control by a Scouting Technician. During each property visit, the technician assigned to a property inspects all of the trees and shrubs and spot treats for the conditions he encounters as necessary. At the end of that visit, the technician leaves a detailed report of what plant material was treated and for which conditions. If a problem requires further attention, the arborist is immediately made aware and will propose a solution to the client.

Custom composttea Custom-blending a compost tea application.

From performing soil injections to sanitation pruning, in our experience, Almstead's PHC Scouting Technicians do more than most people expect. At the same time, our Technicians apply fewer controls (like pesticides and fungicides) than expected. The two actually go hand in hand. By approaching each landscape with an emphasis on observation, spot treatment and holistic care practices, we're able to limit unnecessary treatments and focus our efforts where they're needed.

So, what does a PHC Scouting Technician do? Let's start with soil and root care. Trees with stressed root systems and those without access to nutrient-rich soil are less capable of fighting off insect and disease problems. Based on an arborist's recommendations, technicians may apply custom blends of fresh-brewed compost teas, fertilizers and/or a variety of organic soil amendments to increase the overall health of the trees and shrubs on a property. Technicians often apply these treatments by injecting them beneath the surface, reaching roots directly and breaking up oxygen-starved, compacted soils at the same time.

Poisonous plant removal Reporting a conk (which often indicates decay) to an arborist for further investigation.

That being said, the primary function of a Scouting Technician is just that: scouting. The Technician assigned to a property takes time to inspect each tree and shrub approximately every two weeks throughout the growing season.

Depending on the problems they encounter, Technicians take a variety of actions. For instance, they may hand prune branches to stop a disease from spreading, or apply horticultural oil to a group of shrubs exhibiting mites. At the end of each visit, Technicians leave behind reports detailing their observations and actions.

The individualized attention that technicians give to each tree and shrub is where the effectiveness of the PHC monitoring program really lies.

Plant pruning Sanitation pruning to prevent spreading disease.
We provide our Technicians with a full range of controls and products (many of them organic) that safely and effectively treat the majority of problems they encounter. However, when a situation requires further attention, the property's arborist is notified immediately.

Once they understand the extent of PHC Monitoring, most people expect the price to be much higher than it is. We encourage you to contact our office to have that expectation shattered as well!

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