Friday, August 30, 2013

California Live Oak: Improper Care and Cabling

Gary Knowlton illustrates the disastrous consequences of improper cabling when a large tree limb falls on a house. He explains how the limb failure could have been prevented with proper care.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Trees Cut Air Conditioning Costs!

Trees can add value to your home. Use trees to help cool homes and neighborhoods, to break the cold winds and to lower your heating costs. Trees provide food for wildlife making the neighborhoods a park like setting. Statistics show that the net cooling effect of a young healthy tree is equivalent to ten-room-size air conditioners operating 20 hours a day.
According to the American Public Association; landscaping that shades windows and walls of a home can reduce air conditioning costs by up to 50%. Energy bills can be reduced by planting a tree today on the west side of your home and in 5 years energy bills should be 3% less and in 15 years the savings will be nearly 12%. When trees are properly placed around buildings the air conditioning needs can be reduced by 30% and can save 20-50% in energy used for heating. Home marketability and property value increases whenever there is landscaping with mature trees. Mature trees has appraised value between $1,000 and $10,000. Economic development attracting new business and tourism are stimulated when trees are in the surroundings as commercial retail areas are more attractive to shoppers, apartments rent more quickly and tenants stay longer. Wooded-setting space is more valuable to sell or rent. The planting of trees means improved water quality resulting in less run-off and erosion which allows more recharging of the ground water supply.
Wooded areas help prevent the transport of sediment and chemicals into streams. Visual exposure to settings with trees has produced significant recovery from stress as indicated in monitoring blood pressure and muscle tension. Healthy community forest begins with careful planning. The Department of Agriculture reported that one acre of forest absorbs six tons of carbon dioxide and puts out four tons of oxygen. This is enough to meet the annual needs of 18 people. There are about 60 to 200 million spaces along city streets where trees could be planted with the potential to absorb 33 million more tons of carbon dioxide every year and saving $4 billion in energy costs. Nationally, each of the 60 million street trees have an average value of $525.
With a little research and a simple layout, you can produce a landscape that will cool your home in summer and tame the winter winds. A well-planned yard will contain trees that grow well in the soil and moisture of your neighborhood increasing the property value. Remember that trees should be properly placed to avoid collisions with power lines and buildings.

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Saturday, August 24, 2013

Emergency Project! 150 foot Douglas Fir falls onto two story estate in Napa Valley!

Signature Tree Service responds quickly to a client who had her 150 foot Douglas Fir fall into her home on a Sunday afternoon!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Do You Need To Hire A Tree Removal Specialist?

Sometimes it can be hard to spot when your trees need maintaining, such as a good trim or a whole branch removal. Knowing when to cut a branch can mean the difference between a lovely tree, and damaged or destroyed property. Maintaining your trees is an important measure in making sure your lawn, home, and gardens are a safe and beautiful environment all year round. Here are some tips to get you started, and to know when you need to call a tree trimming professional, or get out those clippers and ladders.
Knowing When To Call An Arborist
Occasionally, a branch or piece of a tree will begin to wither and die, without much in the way of outside influence. These dying branches can be a hazard to your home, people in your yard, and even to the tree itself. If not properly removed it can fall on a passerby, or fall through the roof of your home, causing considerable damage. You can generally tell if a branch is beginning to die by sight. If the leaves are not growing evenly or not at all, the branch has become a darker color than the rest of the tree, or if there is some visual cue of rotting matter.
Dead Or Debilitated Trees
It is not always visually evident that a branch or portion of the tree is dying. You may need to get a closer look at the tree. Check if the end branches near the possibly damaged area are brittle and dry. This is a good sign that the branch has died out. Also, if it has snapped or broken near to the trunk of the tree, it will likely come down soon. Do not try to test your own weight on the tree, instead use a weighted object to see the amount of spring or give the branch has. If it is stiff and dry, it may be time to call an arborist to remove it.
Root Rot
Other symptoms may require that the tree be removed entirely. Some trees will develop a particular ailment known as root rot. If your tree has reached the later stages of this disease, removal is the only solution, as the tree may come down at any time, causing damage to your property, and in some cases, even death. If you notice black areas where the tree is fleshy and hollow, it is definitely time to call a tree removal expert. However, sometimes the roots of the tree have been damaged to a point where the tree is no longer anchored and there are no visible signs of the damage. The best indication in that event, is if the tree has begun to lean in an unseemly manner, or if the lower branches have lost most of their leaf development.
Regardless of what is plaguing your tree, it is important to inspect them every year, usually in the fall, to be sure that you are not at risk of the tree or branches collapsing on your home or lawn.

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Sunday, August 18, 2013

5 Benefits Of Pruning Your Trees Regularly

If you currently have trees in your yard, you undoubtedly already know how important they are to the outer area of your home. Trees are also the perfect addition to any yard or landscape that is too open or bare. Trees certainly provide immeasurable benefits to your outdoor space, but they also require special care to keep them looking their bests. One of the most important parts of maintaining your trees is to prune them regularly. Below is a list of the top five benefits you will receive from pruning your trees regularly.
1. Keep Your Trees Healthy
Regularly pruning will help to remove dead or broken branches, as well as, get rid of any branches that have disease or infestation growing on them. This allows you stop any problems on the plant before it spread to other areas, possibly damaging the entire tree. The pruning process also helps your tree start growing fuller, more stable branches.
2. Add to the Beauty of Your Trees
Trees often grow in odd, irregular shapes. Branches may too low in one area, yet too tall in another area. Pruning helps this problem by pruning or trimming the necessary areas to enhance the overall beauty of the tree. This process can help either stimulate or restrict growth in certain areas of the tree. Trimming your trees regularly helps them keep its shape, which actually makes it look fuller and healthier.
3. Detect Problem with Trees
One of the best benefits of regular pruning is that you can detect problems with your trees early. Whether the tree has been infected, contains an unwanted animal nest, is broken or dead, pruning will help detect these problems. If caught early, many of these problems can be addressed before they spread to other trees in the area. You may also be able to prevent further damage.
4. Prevent Damage
Depending on where in your yard your trees are located, it may be necessary to prune or trim your trees to prevent them from doing any damage to your property. Trees planted close to your home or garage are especially likely to grow large enough to cause damage to your home or car. Unfortunately, if you do not keep regular track of your trees, you may not notice how close the branches are to your property until they have already done the damage.
5. Cost Effective
Most of the companies, offer their services at very affordable rates. The small fee you may pay on a yearly, quarterly or monthly basis do not compare to the cost of replacing your trees. If a tree is left untreated, it means that you will have to pay to both remove the tree and plant another one in its place. It could also be very costly to replace a scratched car, broken windows, or other property damage.
If you have experience in pruning plants, than make sure you regularly check and prune your trees. However, if you have not done this type of work before, it is best to hire a professional to help you prune your trees. A tree pruning specialist can help you determine how to best take care of your trees and how often you should have them pruned. This is the best way to protect your trees and ensure that they look beautiful and stay healthy.

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

80' Pine Saved From Falling Into House - Signature Tree Service

Owner/Operator Curtis Fosnaugh of Signature Tree Service loading a top of pine tree into load line and pulley with use of a "port-a-wrap". Port-a-wrap is a lowering device that enables one person to control heavy weighted items to the ground. This job took place in Benicia,CA

Monday, August 12, 2013

Tree Planting and Care During the Fall

Although it is not typically thought of as such, fall can actually be one of the best seasons for planting trees. Because summer months are drier, sometimes even drought-stricken, newly planted trees often face a hostile environment, unable to take root and thrive. Depending upon the average temperatures and weather and soil conditions for the region in which one lives, this may even be the case for the mid to late spring months. Conversely, the harsh winter months can also be hostile to newly planted trees.
Trees planted during the fall, however, have a great advantage to both these extremes. In fact, timely planting during the fall can prove to be quite beneficial for the successful growth of the tree. By planting during the fall, the climate is typically quite temperate, and the extremes of hot or cold temperatures are no longer an issue. Additionally, with the fall months, the soil tends to better retain moisture, thereby allowing a more nourishing environment for the tree. Planting trees during the fall also allows them the benefit of the winter months for taking root into the surrounding soil and establishing a better chance for viability with the onset of spring.
It is best to start by researching which trees are native to a region. Selecting a species native to a region further ensures the probability of survival. Once a tree has been selected, plant it by first locating the area where the tree is to be planted, carefully considering the average dimensions for the species selected.
Dig a hole as high as, but several times wider than the root ball of the tree. Loosening the soil of the sides of the hole will allow the roots to better establish themselves. However, the bottom of the hole should be left intact to stabilize the tree. If planted correctly, staking the young tree should not be necessary. Generally, staking is only required if there is damage to the lawn or if there are consistently windy conditions.
Remove any containers or, minimally, loosen any burlap (although removing the burlap altogether is best) that may have come on the tree when purchased from the nursery. Then, place the tree into the hole and begin backfilling. Occasionally stomping on the soil will help to remove air pockets.
Backfill approximately two-thirds of the soil originally dug out, then water and allow the soil to settle, continuing to remove any air pockets. Use the remaining one-third of the soil to create a berm (a mound or wall of soil or sand).
Finally, cover the span of the berm all around the base of the trunk with mulch for added support and protection of the young tree.

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Friday, August 9, 2013

Large Pine Tree Removal Napa Valley, California Day 1

 A documentary video of Signature Tree Service's "Day 1" of large Stone Pine removal in Napa Valley.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Signature Tree Service Commercial

Curtis and his team show how Signature Tree Service are the right choice when if comes to taking care of your trees. See more at

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Important Considerations in the Tree Removal Process

If there is a huge tree in your yard, then you should arrange for its removal before it brings up problems such as interfering with the electric lines. It is not a good idea to cut down the tree on your own. Breaking its branches or cutting it down by yourself would increase the possibility of damaging the electric lines or even your house. This is where tree removal companies come in handy. These companies render professional services with no damages. But before the removal process begins, there are some factors that you need to consider first.
Factors to consider before tree removal:
- Area bylaws: Most areas have some bylaws that regulate removal of a tree even from a private property. Therefore, go through the laws and ensure you are fully compliant with them.
- Underground hazards: If the tree is to be removed alongside its stump, then you need to check if there are some underground cables, gas lines and sewer that may get damaged.
- Proximity to your house: In some cases, you may want to cut down a tree which is closer to the house. In such cases, extra care should be taken to avoid any serious damage to the house.
- Trees that overhang the property of a neighbor: There are cases when small part or even a major part of a tree within your home overhangs a neighboring home. You should check what the local bylaws say about such cases. Moreover, you should seek the neighbor's permission before removing the tree.
- Insurance: Make sure the contractor you hire is properly insured for injuries or property damage to the crew, yourself, and even your neighbors while taking out the tree.
- Disposal: Most people tend to underestimate the kind of material they will have to get rid of, after a tree is removed. Cutting down a big tree would leave tons of debris, branches and wood that cannot fit in the garbage pickup. Therefore, it is important to hire a company with an on-site shredder in order to make the work easier and reduce disposal costs.
- Cost of Removal: The first factor that determines the cost of removing a tree is its size. Bigger and wider trees will attract higher removal charges. The location of the tree can also affect the cost. The companies would ask for more money in case the tree is closer to a house and other structures, power lines and other utility lines, or any other place that would require high level expertise and sophisticated equipment to accomplish the task.
You can also be charged more in case the tree is dead or contains wasps, bees and other harmful insects. Another cost determinant is the cleanup and disposal of debris left behind after removal. The company may charge you more for offering cleanup services.
In conclusion, remember to always hire a reputable tree removal company. Hiring a professional means you will not have to worry about how and where to get permits, underground hazards, disposing wood and so on. Take quotations from at least three companies before settling on the right one.

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