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                                                                 You have to go back quite a way in ASCA history to find Spence
                                                                 Davis’ name. Spence was one of the early, early members of the
                                                                 Society. An Extension Plant Pathologist at Rutgers University,
                                                                 Spence was also a mentor during my undergraduate days. Long
                                                                 after I’d moved on to academia, Spence continued to encour-
What’s Inside                                                    age me to join ASCA.
2   Upcoming Events
                                        James R. Clark, Ph.D. I realize now that Spence was looking to ASCA’s future. He
3   Update on the ISA’s Best                      RCA #357    knew that if I became a member that I’d be an active one, i.e.,
    Management Practice for Tree Risk         ASCA President
                                                              someone who donated time to the organization. Active mem-
                                                    bers attend the annual conference and participate in the programs of
7   RCA Perspectives
                                                    the Society. They work on committees and task forces. At some point,
8   New Apps of Interest                            they may choose to run for the Board. At the conference in Lake Tahoe,
9   2011 ASCA Conference                            the Society recognized the contributions of some 50 volunteers. These
11 Marketing Your Consulting                        are the Society’s active members. It is from this group that future lead-
   Services—ASCA Members Share                      ers will emerge.
   Their Best Strategies
14 Keep More of Your Income and Pay                 In recent months, the Board of Directors has given the topic of leadership
   Less in Taxes
                                                    a great deal of thought. We realize that we need to provide more oppor-
15 Change Your Passwords!                           tunities for members to participate in the Society. And we’re doing it.
16 Call for Nominations                             Our A300 and SUFC reps, Steve Miller and Rob Allen, want to develop
17 Lyme Disease: Myths & Facts for                  active teams to support ASCA’s participation in those organizations.
   Tree Care Professionals                          Penny Willocks has recruited six members to help review content for the
19 The Story of Longleaf Pine                       Arboricultural Consultant. Bill Scott has engaged a group of members to
19 In Memoriam
                                                    advise him on the Society’s educational programs. Our A3G Committee
                                                    will be busy reviewing draft chapters of the 10th edition.
20 Member Profiles
21 Member News                                      The Board has also acknowledged that we must broaden our efforts to
24 Q&A: Tree Risk Assessment                        meet and get to know you, the members. When we discuss membership
28 ASCA Invests in the Future                       of committees and task forces, we are limited to the members that we
                                                    know. The primary venue for us to meet you is the annual conference.
                                                    From a member perspective, the conference is the place where you can
                                                    meet staff, sit-in on presentations, and network with colleagues from
                                                    around North America. One of the great sessions at Lake Tahoe was
                                                    the networking roundtable—the opportunity to ask questions of your
                                                    peers and discuss topics as diverse as expert witness to tools of the trade.
    9707 Key West Avenue, Suite 100
    Rockville, MD 20850                             As an example, at the Lake Tahoe conference I was able to meet Shannon
    Phone: 301.947.0483                             Sperati, our member services manager. I saw Bart Fusco, cancer survivor,
    Fax: 301.990.9771
    Email:                                                                                 [continued on page 6]

                                                        1       Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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         2012 BOARD OF DIRECTORS

     James R. Clark, Ph.D., RCA #357, Pleasanton, CA
     Gordon Mann, RCA #480, Auburn, CA
     Immediate Past President
     Alan Jones, RCA #364, Charlottesville, VA
     Directors                                                  February 21–24, 2012
     Patrick B. Brewer, Austin, TX
                                                                Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel
     Brian K. Gilles, RCA #418, Kirkland, WA
     Dennis Panu, RCA #396, Thompson, CT
     Jan C. Scow, RCA #382, Sherman Oaks, CA                    Philadelphia, PA
     Molly E. Sinnott, Carson City, NV                          Co-sponsored by
     John W. Wickes, RCA #455, Spring Valley, NY                Mid-Atlantic Chapter International Society of Arboriculture
     Executive Director                                         New England Chapter International Society of Arboriculture
     Beth W. Palys, FASAE, CAE                                  New York State Arborists Association
                                                                Penn-Del Chapter International Society of Arboriculture
     Vice President Meetings                                    Western Chapter International Society of Arboriculture
     Grace L. Jan, CAE, CMP
     Educational Development

                                                               Take Your Career
     Bill Scott, CAE
     Marketing Manager
     Julie Hill
     Member Services Manager

                                                               to the Next Level
     Shannon Sperati
     Production Manager
     Penny Willocks
     Senior Graphic Designer
     Jon Benjamin
     Dawn Rosenfeld
     Registrar                                                  ASCA’s 2012 Consulting Academy is the most
     Kayleigh Bryant
                                                                comprehensive training experience for arborists who
     Arboricultural Consultant is published four times
                                                                consult—as well as those ready to start consulting.
     a year by ASCA. Articles and news items are
     encouraged. Articles and camera-ready graphics             Don’t miss out on this opportunity to participate in
     must be received six weeks before publication and          interactive workshops and lectures designed to help
     should be sent to:                                         you obtain the knowledge and skills to run a successful
     ASCA Newsletter                                            consulting practice. You’ll learn:
     9707 Key West Avenue • Suite 100
     Rockville, MD 20850                                        ƒ What to include in a standard contract
     P 301-947-0483 • F 301-990-9771                            ƒ Types of insurance that will shield your business
     E                                         ƒ The details of cost accounting
     W                                 ƒ The ethics of consulting
                                                                ƒ How forensics applies to arboriculture and
     Editorial Review Group
                                                                  environmental consulting
     R. Bruce Allison, Ph.D., RCA #272, Verona, WI              ƒ The skills to write comprehensive and effective reports
     Rex A. Bastian, Wheeling, IL
     John A. Eisenhower, Scottsdale, AZ                         ƒ Different approaches to business development
     Michael F. Galvin, RCA #432, Annapolis, MD                 ƒ The consultant’s role in contentious situations
     Michael D. Santos, RCA #430, Pleasanton, CA
     Mark Wisniewski, Encinitas, CA                             And, each student will have one-on-one time with
                                                                their own coach. Space is limited.
                                                                Visit to register today.                    The Consultant’s Consultant
     The following antitrust statement has been approved
     by the President and Board of Directors of the Ameri-
     can Society of Consulting Arborists.

                                                               Upcoming Events
     “Members of the American Society of Consulting
     Arborists, especially members of the Board of Direc-
     tors and Society committees, are reminded that they
     do not and may not speak for or on behalf of the Soci-
     ety without the express permission of the President or    2012 ASCA Consulting Academy                                   2012 ASCA Annual Conference
     Board of Directors of the American Society of Con-
     sulting Arborists. This prohibition includes the use of   Feb 21 – 24, 2012                                              Nov 28 – Dec 1, 2012
     ASCA letterhead when making a statement of a techni-      Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel                                   Rancho Bernardo Inn
     cal, economic or political nature. Members of ASCA        Philadelphia, PA                                               San Diego, CA
     speak only for themselves as professional consultants
     when giving opinions or making statements.”

                              American Society of Consulting Arborists              2      Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Update on the ISA’s Best Management
    Practice for Tree Risk Assessment
    By Nelda Matheny, RCA #243, HortScience, Inc.

    The ISA’s Tree Risk Assessment BMP is               The document contains the following:
    completed. The document, written by
    Tom Smiley, Sharon Lilly, and myself,               1. Risk Assessment Basics                         •	Combining	the	likelihood	of	failure	
    has taken three years to complete. It               	 •	Approaches	to	Risk	Assessment                   and the likelihood of impact to deter-
    underwent review by a committee of 75                     - Quantitative risk assessment                mine the likelihood of a tree failure
                                                              - Qualitative risk assessment                 impacting a specified target
    people from 13 countries and all aspects
                                                              - Types of Risk Associated with trees     	 •	Categorizing	consequences	of	failure
    of professional arboriculture. In addi-
                                                                   » Conflicts
    tion, sections were reviewed and edited                        » Failures
                                                                                                             - Part size and fall characteristics
    by professionals outside of arboriculture,                                                               - Fall distance and target protection
    including risk management professionals,            2. Levels and Scope of Tree Risk
                                                                                                        	 •	Tree	risk	rating	
    biomechanics scientists, and attorneys.                                                             	 •	Risk	perception	and	acceptable	risk
                                                        	 •	Level	1:	Limited	visual	assessment
                                                        	 •	Level	2:	Basic	assessment
    The purpose of the document is to aid               	 •	Level	3:	Advanced	Assessment                5. Tree Risk Mitigation
    interpretation of professional standards            	 •	Defining	the	Scope	of	Work                  	 •	Work	prioritization
    and guide work practices based on cur-                                                              	 •	Residual	risk
                                                        3. Assessing and Evaluating Risk from
    rent science and technology. It is intended                                                         	 •	Inspection	frequency	and	timing
                                                           Tree Failures
    to serve as a guide for arborists to assess         	 •	Likelihood	of	tree	impacting	a	target
    and evaluate tree risk, and to recommend                                                            6. Tree Risk Reporting
                                                               - Risk targets
    measures that achieve an acceptable level                                                           	 •	Limitations	of	Tree	Risk	Assessment
                                                               - Target zone
    of risk. The importance of preserving                      - Occupancy rate
                                                                                                        7. Definitions
    trees and of avoiding unnecessary treat-            	 •	Consequences	of	tree	failure
    ments is emphasized. It is not the intent                impacting a target
    of the document to provide direction for            	 •	Site	factors
                                                                                                        1 Tree-related conflicts that can be a
    developing risk management policy or for            	 	 -	Wind	
                                                                                                          source of risk
                                                        	 •	Tree	failure	profiles
    providing legal guidance.                                                                           2 Loads on trees
                                                        4. Tree Risk Categorization                     3 Defects and conditions that affect the
    This BMP was developed to be consistent             	 •	Categorizing	likelihood	of	tree               likelihood of tree failure
    with the International Standards Organi-                failure impacting target                    4 Response (Adaptive) Growth
    zation (ISO) Standard 31000:2009 Risk                     - Likelihood of failure                   5 Description of selected types of
    Management—Principles and Guidelines,                     - Likelihood of impacting a target          Advanced Tree Risk Assessments
    ISO 31010 Risk Assessment Techniques,
    ISO Guide 73 Risk Management Vocabu-
    lary, American National Standards Insti-            Key ideas                                           Tree Safety Group (NTSG), which
    tute (ANSI) A300 Part 9: 2010; Tree Risk            There are several key ideas that frame tree         is a partnership of organizations in
    Assessment - Tree Structure, the German             risk assessment.                                    the United Kingdom, has drafted a
    Guideline for traffic safety inspection of trees’                                                       guidance document that identifies
    of the German Research Society for Land-            1. It is impossible to maintain trees free          five key principles for tree risk
                                                           of risk; some level of risk must be              management. This provides a
    scape Development and Building, and other
                                                           accepted to experience the benefits              foundation for balancing tree risk and
    national standards.                                    that trees provide. The National                 the benefits the trees provide:

                          American Society of Consulting Arborists           3      Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Update on the ISA’s Best Management Practice for Tree Risk Assessment continued

         • Trees provide a wide variety of         2. Many trees are located where the             reasonable and proportionate to the
                                                      consequences of failure are minor or         specific conditions and situations.
           benefits to society
                                                      negligible. In urban and developed           These are tree risk management
         • Trees are living organisms and                                                          issues.
           naturally lose branches or fail            areas where people, property, and
         • The risk to human safety is                activities could be injured, damaged,     3. Tree risk assessors often must
           extremely low                              or disrupted, the consequences of tree       perform risk assessments with
                                                      conflict or failure may be significant       limited information about the
         • Tree owners have a legal duty of care
                                                      or severe. Decisions on whether a tree       structural condition of the tree and
         • Tree owners should take a                  inspection is required or what level of
           balanced and proportionate                                                              the environment that affects it. Tree
                                                      assessment is appropriate should be          risk assessors form opinions about
           approach to tree safety                    made with consideration for what is          what is likely to occur in the future
                                                                                                   based on their experience and what
                                                                                                   is observed. These assessments are

                                                                                                   then provided to a tree owner or
                                                                                                   manager to make decisions about
                                                                                                   tree management.

                                                                                                4. Because trees are unique living

         Guide to a
                                                                                                   organisms, not all practices can be
                                                                                                   applied in the same way to all trees.
                                                                                                   Procedures and methodologies

         Professional                                                                              should be selected and applied as
                                                                                                   appropriate, with consideration for

                                                                                                   what is reasonable and proportionate
                                                                                                   to the specific conditions and

         Practice                                                                               5. Arborists serving as tree risk assessors
                                                                                                   should have specialized education,
                                                                                                   training, skills, and experience,
         ASCA’s newest publication,                                                                and should be properly insured to
                                                                                                   provide this service. Familiarity
         Guide to a Professional                                                                   with basic tools and equipment
         Consulting Practice,                                                                      is needed for many assessments.
         provides guidance for setting up a consulting practice,                                   Specialized tools or equipment may
         as well as information on the role of Consulting Arborists                                be required for some assessments.
                                                                                                   In some jurisdictions certification,
         and how they perform their duties.                                                        qualifications or licenses are required
                                                                                                   to conduct tree risk assessments.
         Chapters include:
         •	 Limited	or	Preliminary	Reports	        •	 Overview	of	Arboricultural	
                                                                                                Define the assignment
                                                                                                Before a tree risk assessment takes place,
         •	 Related	and	Unrelated	                    Consulting
                                                                                                it is important to establish the context
            Business Activities                    •	 Practice	Management	
                                                                                                of the assignment. Context defines the
         •	 Ethics	                                •	 Duties	to	Customers,	Clients,	
                                                                                                parameters of the risk assessment includ-
         •	 Ethical	Principles	                       and Employers
                                                                                                ing objectives, how risk will be evaluated,
         •	 Roles	                                 •	 Insurance	
                                                                                                communication flow, applicable policies
         •	 ASCA	Designations	and	Duties	          •	 Methodology	
                                                                                                or legal requirements, and limitations of
         •	 Resources	for	Consulting	              •	 Adequate	Data	
                                                                                                the risk assessment. Tree risk assessment
            Arborists                              •	 Verifiable	Results	
                                                                                                is the systematic process to identify, ana-
                                                                                                lyze, and evaluate tree risk. The manner
         Order Your Copy Today                                                                  in which this process is applied depends
                                                                                                on the context and the methods used to
                                                                                                carry out the risk assessment.

                         American Society of Consulting Arborists     4    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Update on the ISA’s Best Management Practice for Tree Risk Assessment continued

    Levels and scope of tree risk                  Assessing and evaluating risk
    assessment                                     from tree failure                              Steps in developing a tree
    In parallel with ANSI A300 Part 9, three       A primary goal of tree risk assessment is      risk rating using the matrix
                                                                                                  approach from the BMP
    levels of tree risk assessment are defined:    to provide information about the level of
                                                   risk posed by a tree over a specific time      1. Identify possible targets
         Level 1: Limited Visual—A visual          period. This is accomplished in qualita-       2. Identify tree part(s) that could
         assessment from a specified perspec-      tive tree risk assessment by first deter-         strike target
         tive to identify obvious defects or       mining the categories for likelihood and       3. Evaluate likelihood for each
         specified conditions. Limited Visual      consequences of tree failure. These two           part to fail
         assessments are the fastest but least     factors are determined by:                        a. Improbable
         thorough means of assessment and                                                            b. Possible
                                                   1. Evaluating the structural conditions           c. Probable
         are intended primarily for large pop-
                                                      that may lead to failure; the                  d. Imminent
         ulations of trees. The assessment is
         often done on a specified schedule,          potential loads on the tree; and the        4. Evaluate likelihood of tree/part
                                                      trees’ adaptations to weaknesses to            impacting target
         and/or immediately after storms              determine the likelihood of failure.        	 a.	 Very	low
         to rapidly assess a tree population.
                                                   2. Evaluating the likelihood that a tree or       b. Low
         Level 1 assessments do not always                                                           c. Medium
                                                      branch could strike people or property
         meet the criteria for a “Risk Assess-                                                       d. High
                                                      or disrupt activities.
         ment” if they do not include analysis
         and evaluation of individual trees.       3. Assessing the targets’ values and           5. For each failure mode, identify
                                                      potential damage to estimate the               likelihood for tree failure impacting
                                                      consequences of failure.                       a specified target
         Level 2: Basic—A detailed visual                                                         	 a.	 Very	unlikely
         inspection of a tree and surround-                                                          b. Unlikely
                                                   With ratings for the likelihood and con-          c. Somewhat likely
         ing site, and a synthesis of the infor-
                                                   sequences, the level of risk can then be          d. Likely
         mation collected. It requires that a
                                                   estimated or categorized.                      	 e.	 Very	likely
         tree risk assessor walk completely
         around the tree—looking at the site,                                                     6. For each failure mode, estimate
                                                   Risk categorization                               consequences of failure
         buttress roots, trunk, and branches.
                                                   Most tree risk assessment reports include         a. Negligible
         A Basic assessment may include the
                                                   a rating of estimated risk posed by the           b. Minor
         use of simple tools such as binocu-       tree. In a qualitative tree risk assessment,      c. Significant
         lars, a sounding mallet, and a probe,     assessors can use a matrix to help catego-        d. Severe
         to gain additional information about      rize risk. The risk category is then com-
         the tree or defects. Basic is the stan-                                                  7. For each failure mode,
                                                   pared to the level of risk that is accept-        designate the risk.
         dard assessment that is performed         able to the client. If the risk category          a. Low
         by arborists in response to a client’s    defined for the tree risk exceeds the level       b. Moderate
         request for tree risk assessment.         of acceptable risk, mitigation options            c. High
                                                   should be presented.                              d. Extreme
         Level 3: Advanced—An assessment
         performed to provide more detailed        The Tree Risk Assessment BMP uses a
         information about specific tree parts,    qualitative matrix approach to catego-
         defects, targets, or site conditions.     rize risk. The factors considered are the      ified period of time. The likelihood of
         They are usually conducted in con-        likelihood of a tree failure impacting a       tree failure is determined by examining
         junction with or after a Basic assess-    target, and the consequences of the fail-      structural conditions, defects, response
         ment if the tree risk assessor needs      ure. There are seven steps involved (see       growth, and anticipated loads. The
         additional information and the cli-       sidebar).                                      four categories for likelihood of failure
         ent approves the additional service.                                                     are improbable, possible, probable, and
         Specialized equipment, data collec-       The likelihood of a tree failure impact-       imminent.
         tion and analysis, and/or expertise       ing a target is determined by consider-
         are usually required for Advanced         ing two factors. First is the likelihood       Second is the likelihood of the failed tree
         assessments.                              of a tree failure occurring within a spec-     or branch impacting the specified target.

                         American Society of Consulting Arborists      5    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Update on the ISA’s Best Management Practice for Tree Risk Assessment continued

    Impact may be the tree directly striking        pendent events and to recommend mit-           impossible to maintain trees free of risk;
    the target or it may be a disruption of         igation options along with estimated           some level of risk must be accepted to
    activities due to the failure. The four cate-   residual risks for each factor.                experience the benefits that trees provide.
    gories of likelihood of impacting the tar-                                                     For most trees, the benefits they provide
    get are very low, low, medium, and high.        There is typically a considerable level        far outweigh the risks they pose. Tree
                                                    of uncertainty associated with tree risk       risk assessors should recognize the value
    These two factors are categorized using         assessment due to our limited ability to       of preserving trees and the importance of
    a matrix to estimate the likelihood of          predict natural processes (rate of pro-        avoiding unnecessary treatments.
    the combined event: a tree failure occur-       gression of decay, response growth, etc.),
    ring and the tree impacting the specified       weather events, traffic and occupancy          Nelda Matheny is President of HortScience,
    target. The four categories are unlikely,       rates, and potential consequences of tree      Inc., a consulting firm in Pleasanton, CA.
    somewhat likely, likely and very likely.        failure. Sources of uncertainly should be      Most of this article has been taken from
                                                    understood and communicated to risk            the Tree Risk Assessment BMP with the
    The next step is to rank the consequences       manager/tree owner.                            permission of coauthors Tom Smiley and
    of failure. Consequences are a function                                                        Sharon Lilly, and the ISA.
    of the value of the target and amount           The risk matrix approach was selected
    of injury, damage or disruption (harm)          for use in the BMP because of its broad
    that could be caused by the impact of the       acceptance, ease of use, and effective
    failure. The amount of damage depends           application for rating risk. The matrix
                                                                                                      President’s Message continued
    on the part size, fall characteristics, fall    was designed specifically for the eval-
    distance, and any factors that may pro-         uation of risk posed by tree failures.
    tect the target from harm. Consequences         The limitations associated with using a           for the first time in several years.
    are ranked as negligible, minor, significant    matrix include the inherent subjectivity          I heard George Hudler give one of
    or severe.                                      associated with the selection of both the         the best presentations ever. I heard
                                                    likelihood and consequence factors, and           our own Logan Nelson, Scott Cullen
    In the final step, the risk rating is           the lack of comparability to other types          and Dave Hucker talk about appraisal
    assigned using the tree risk assessment         of risk assessed using other means. Other         and the 10th edition. And I met many
    matrix, which combines the likelihood           quantitative or qualitative assessments           new members.
    that the tree will fail and strike a target     are not precluded from best management
    with the consequences of failure. Four          practices. Whichever technique is cho-            I want to encourage you to attend
    terms are used to define levels of risk:        sen, the users should recognize the limi-         this year’s meeting in the San Diego
    low, moderate, high, and extreme. These         tations as well as the nature and degree          area at the Rancho Bernardo Inn. The
    risk ratings are used to communicate the        of uncertainty in the data and informa-           time to make the commitment and
    level of risk and to assist in making rec-      tion available.                                   put it on your calendar is NOW. Not
    ommendations to the owner or risk man-                                                            only will you enjoy a great venue with
    ager for mitigation and inspection fre-         Summary                                           great presentations. But you will also
    quency. The priority for action depends         The ISA Tree Risk Assessment BMP pro-             have the opportunity to talk with the
    on the risk rating and risk tolerance of        vides guidance to arborists on how to             Board of Directors and find out how
    the owner or manager.                           meet ANSI A300 Part 9, inspect trees              they became active in the Society.
                                                    and sites, and to identify, analyze, and
    Most trees have more than one potential         evaluate risk posed by trees. The docu-           Thanks for your support. See you in
    failure mode and may have multiple risk         ment does not address all tree risk man-          San Diego!
    targets. For example, a tree with exces-        agement activities such as developing
    sive root decay may also have several           policy and objectives, implementing
    dead branches; the whole tree could fail        treatments and controls, and monitor-
    from root decay, and dead branches may          ing the risk management program.
    fail. Similarly, the whole tree may fall
    on the house, while the dead branches           A primary goal of this publication is to
    would fall only on the driveway. When           provide an analysis and evaluation pro-
    evaluating individual trees, it is appro-       cedure by which arborists can distin-
    priate to evaluate each factor as inde-         guish among levels of risk trees pose. It is

                         American Society of Consulting Arborists       6    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    RCA Perspectives

    Since its inception in the late ’90s, hun-   or proposed by a member in good stand-      of my mind to take another look at the
    dreds of individuals have dedicated the      ing in order to be considered for mem-      profession as I approached the logical
    time and resources required to earn          bership in ASCA.                            conclusion of my contracting career. For
    the highest professional designation                                                     that reason, I have always kept a close eye
    for arborists—the Registered Consult-        Andy, as one of ASCA’s newest RCAs,         on the profession.
    ing Arborist®. To find out more about        can you give us some insight into why
    why ASCA Members value this des-             and how you became involved with            Several years ago, I came to the realiza-
    ignation so much, and what it means          ASCA?                                       tion that my diminishing physical abili-
    to their consulting practice, we inter-                                                  ties were screaming at me to begin to start
    viewed two RCAs—one of the earli-            For as long as I can remember, I have       winding down the physically demanding
    est who is still active in his consulting    been interested in plants, animals, and     contracting part of my career, and start
    practice, Ellis N. Allen, RCA #139,          building things. I had my own garden        expanding the more cerebral design and
    and one of ASCA’s newest RCAs, Andrew        before I was old enough to attend grade     consulting parts of my career. I am begin-
    J. White, RCA #510.                          school. I was raising and racing homing     ning the career transition process now. I
                                                 pigeons on my own while still in middle     have always had the desire to work as long
    Ellis, as one of our earliest Registered     school. My construction skills were well    as I am physically and mentally able, and
    Consulting Arborists, can you describe       honed by the time I entered high school.    I feel I should be able to design landscapes
    what it was like—back when you first         My graduate studies focused on plant        and consult for as long as my mind is still
    joined ASCA.                                 ecology, specifically plant-animal inter-   functioning at a reasonably high level.
                                                 actions. For the past 30+ years, I have     Over the past few years, I have tried to
    Back in the early ’70s, shortly after        owned businesses that have focused pri-     fill any gaps in my credentials / knowl-
    ASCA started, I was asked to join by         marily on designing and building out-       edge that might limit me as a designer
    Spence Davis. At that time the ASCA          door living areas and gardens. Trees as a   and consultant. One of my certification
    meetings consisted of a one-day meet-        group of plants have always held special    / registration deficiencies was in the area
    ing prior to the National Arborist Asso-     interest to me.                             of arboricultural consultation, and it was
    ciation (TCIA) annual meeting. I was                                                     for this reason that I pursued the RCA
    still struggling with my tree business and   Early in my career (about 30+ years ago),   status. Unlike thirty years ago, I finally
    didn’t feel like I could monetarily afford   I met L.C. Chadwick at the Ohio Nurs-       felt I was now qualified to be an RCA and
    to join ASCA, or to give up the time         eryman’s Short Course in Columbus,          that I had something worthwhile to offer
    from my work to attend longer than the       Ohio. We discussed arboricultural con-      the public and the profession. I still have
    NAA meeting. Finally after talking with      sultation as a profession. This was when    some doubts about my earning power as
    some of the other members of ASCA,           the profession was just starting to get     an RCA, but feel that the design work
    and with more prodding from Spence, I        properly organized. Tree appraisals were    will be a good complement and supple-
    did join in 1975.                            just beginning to be taken seriously at     ment to my RCA practice. My financial
                                                 that time. Back then, I was very inter-     needs are not what they once were.
    After that time I attended most all of       ested in the profession, but did not feel
    ASCA’s meetings and eventually they          I was properly qualified to join, nor did   Andy, what made you then decide to
    became a stand alone organization, sepa-     I think I could properly support myself     become a Registered Member rather
    rate from NAA. At that early time a pro-     and family as a Consulting Arborist.        than continuing your status as Member
    spective member had to be recommended        However, it has always been in the back     or even non-member?

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists    7    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    RCA Perspectives continued

    Throughout my education and career, I         Andy, what are some of the biggest

                                                                                                   New Apps
    have always tried to achieve the highest      changes you have seen in your prac-
    levels possible. Once I made the decision     tice since beginning pursuit of your

                                                                                                   of Interest
    to enter the field of arboricultural con-     RCA designation?
    sultation, I knew I wanted to achieve the
    highest status possible, and that is RCA      In the past year, I joined ASCA, attended
    status. Becoming an RCA has been my           the Consulting Academy, and became
    goal since joining ASCA.                      an RCA. This was done while running
                                                  an existing business during difficult eco-
    What type of clients or assignments           nomic times and pursuing other career
    does each of you get most frequently?         objectives. There has not been any time          Get inspired with a
                                                  for changes in my practice; my formal            cool app—TED
    Andy: Since I am still very much              RCA practice is just beginning.                  Got 5–20 extra minutes, with noth-
    involved in designing and building land-                                                       ing to do? Click on your TED app,
    scapes and outdoor living areas, most         Can you each name a significant oppor-           and hear riveting talks by remarkable
    of my consulting work comes from              tunity and a significant challenge you           people, free to
    these clients and projects, and it prob-      see ahead for ASCA and for you as a              the world.
    ably always will. Because of my role as       practicing RCA?
    a Landscape Contractor and Licensed                                                            TED’s of f i-
    General Building Contractor, much of          Ellis: The biggest benefits that I have seen     cial app pres-
    my work necessarily deals with pre- and       in recent years are the increase of educa-       ent s t a l k s
    post-construction impact on existing          tional material at the annual meetings           from some of
    trees. Proper tree selection, establish-      and the increased quality of those mate-         t he world ’s
    ment, and maintenance are also a big          rials. The biggest challenge for the Con-        most fascinat-
    part of my practice. Evaluating hazard-       sulting Arborist will be to keep up with         ing people: education radicals, tech
    ous trees is important and I plan to do       the latest techniques of diagnosis of trees      geniuses, medical mavericks, busi-
    more of this in the future. Working with      and their care. It will always be necessary      ness gurus and music legends. Find
    developers, builders, architects and prop-    to keep informed of court cases and how          more than 900 TEDTalk videos
    erty owners to properly develop building      we can best present our side of the story        (with more added each week) on the
    sites is an area of practice I want to get    if it goes to court. It will be necessary        official TED app—now for both
    more involved in; my background is well       to keep abreast of new and better ways           iPad and iPhone.
    suited for this.                              to treat plants so as to provide the best
                                                  information for the client.                      On iPad
    Ellis: The type of client that I most often                                                    The entire library is at your finger-
    seem to get is ones who have had trees        Andy: The challenges and opportunities           tips. Watch TEDTalks in high or
    removed from their property by others         are basically the same as they always have       low res formats based on your net-
    without permission. Also I have had cli-      been. The challenge for a practicing RCA         work connectivity. Play it on your
    ents that inadvertently removed trees         is to provide a worthwhile service and be        device or send to your home enter-
    from neighbors without intending to           adequately compensated for the effort.           tainment system via AirPlay. Curate
    invade their property. In other words,        Attaining the highest degree of profes-          your own playlist. Watch them later,
    they didn’t know where the property line      sionalism is critical for establishing and       even when you can’t be online. Sort
    was of their own property.                    maintaining credibility, both individu-          views by recency or popularity.
                                                  ally as an RCA and as an organization            Find something by tags, themes, or
    I also have cases where there is injury       such as ASCA. ASCA and its members               related talks. Share favorites with
    from failing trees both for the plaintiff     need to continue to work together to fur-        your friends. Tell us how much time
    and the defense. It is necessary to deter-    ther the profession. Consulting Arborists        you have and let us guide you to a
    mine if the tree had been in a hazardous      have the opportunity to make significant         delightful playlist.
    condition and if it was known to have         improvements in the quality and safety of
    been in a hazardous condition prior to        the environment—not everyone has that            On iPhone and iPod touch:
    the incident.                                 opportunity!                                     The entire library is available for

                                                                                                                  [continued on page 18]

                        American Society of Consulting Arborists      8    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
2011 Conference
ASCA Annual
                        November 30 –December 3
                        Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe
                        Incline Village, Nevada

        Taking Your
             Consulting Practice to
            New Heights
From start to finish the 2011 ASCA Annual Conference in Incline
Village, Nevada was a huge success! The conference started out
strong with the pre-conference workshop on The Appraisal Pro-
cess, which included a lively Q&A session between the audience
and speakers. Sessions and speakers all received high marks from
attendees—especially for James Urban’s session on Preservation of
Existing Trees in Urban Areas, George Hudler’s session on Bleed-

                  American Society of Consulting Arborists   9      Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
2011 ASCA Conference continued

ing Cankers Caused by Phytophthora on       Here’s just a sampling of the benefits
Shade & Ornamental Trees, and Nelda         attendees said they received from attend-
Matheny’s sessions on The ISA Tree Risk     ing the conference:
Assessment BMP: What Consulting Arbor-
ists Need to Know.                          • Getting the most current research
                                              from the most current researchers
And, the newest addition to the confer-     • Gaining a better knowledge of
ence was a big hit—roundtable discus-         arboricultural consulting
sions. During this session, eight sets of   • Learning that others’ challenges are
tables were set-up, each with a different     the same as mine
topic for discussion—Soils, Pests, Eth-     • Meeting the folks that were glad to
ics, Devices/Gadgets, Expert Witness,         offer advice
Appraisal, Risk Assessment, and Mar-
keting. Attendees then could select which   • Getting referrals from Members
table/topic they wanted to participate      • Getting inspiration to take home
in for 12-minute speed sessions where       • Gaining new concepts from hearing
they shared their thoughts and concerns       what other consultants are doing
about the topic. Five 12-minute sessions    • Continuing Education Credits
were held and attendees made the most
of every minute. The format was such a
success that it has been requested to be
part of future conferences.

                  American Society of Consulting Arborists    10    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
< home

    Marketing Tips

    Marketing Your Consulting Services—
    ASCA Members Share Their Best Strategies
    By Julie Hill, ASCA Marketing Manager

    For those of you who attended ASCA’s         university level or to a local Home        Make Yourself the Media’s Go-To
    2011 Annual Conference in Incline Vil-       Owner’s Association (HOA), teaching        Person: Radio, newspapers, and online
    lage, Nevada, you know that the new          positions yourself as an expert and gets   media are always looking for experts to
    Roundtable Discussions Session was a         your name out there.                       interview about arboricultural issues.
    big hit. Why? Because attendees, both                                                   The trick to is make sure they have
    Members and non-members alike, really        Writing Articles: Whether it’s for a       your information, so when they have
    opened up to share their experiences,        local paper, HOA newsletter, industry      a question you’re the person they call
    thoughts and concerns with each other.       publication or blog, having your opin-     and no one else. By calling or emailing
    This was especially true for the partici-    ions on industry issues published for      them with your information and cre-
    pants at the Marketing Roundtable Dis-       all to see helps to establish you as an    dentials, you’re upping your chances of
    cussion table—where everyone shared          industry expert. And, if you publish       being their go-to person. One ASCA
    the marketing strategies that have been      regularly, your readers will seek you      Member even went as far as renting an
    successful for them in promoting their       out when they need your services.          airplane to take news editors for a tour

    For those of you who couldn’t make it
    to the conference, as well as those who
    did but couldn’t make it to the market-
    ing table, below are just a few examples
    of the clever ways your colleagues are
    promoting their services. Feel free to try
    a few out and to see how they work for

    Establishing Yourself
    As An Expert
    Speaking Engagements: Get yourself
    slated to speak in front of any group
    whose members might need your ser-
    vices—city planners, garden clubs,
    home inspector groups, insurance
    adjusters, environmentalists, ISA Chap-
    ters, county code compliance officers.
    This is a great opportunity to educate
    groups on how a Consulting Arborist
    can be beneficial to them.

    And, going hand-in-hand with speak-
    ing engagements is offering to teach
    a class. Whether the class is on the

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists   11    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
< home

    Marketing Tips continued

    of some damaged forest area. While            Highly Targeted Direct Mail: One of             of sharing your observations, insights
    surveying the damage, he was able to          our Members mentioned that a good               and overall expertise. And the great
    explain the issues with the trees—and         percentage of his business comes from           news about blogs is that they don’t have
    establish himself as an expert. Now,          residential clients. When he’s driving          to be long-winded technical papers—
    they call him whenever they need an           through a neighborhood, he makes a              keep them short, to the point and pep-
    opinion.                                      point of looking at all the trees in every-     pered with your own personality.
                                                  one’s yard. If he notices a tree that’s
    Advertising                                   having issues, he makes a note of the         Miscellaneous Tactics
    Many of your peers are advertising via        person’s address. When he gets back           Be Active In Groups: You all belong
    traditional vehicles: Print ads (both in      to the office, he sends a very targeted       to various groups—ASCA, local ISA
    local papers and in the yellow pages),        letter to the homeowner letting them          Chapters, your local Chamber of Com-
    eblasts, etc. All of these methods are use-   know about the issue and his services.        merce, etc., but do you actively partic-
    ful and effective ways to get your name       A super cost-effective, creative idea—        ipate in them? ASCA Members have
    out. But, I’ll focus on a few different       not only is he able to cut back the cost      shared that when they become active and
    ways to advertise your services in this       of bulk direct mailing, but he’s able to      vocal in the groups that they’ve joined
    section.                                      increase his ROI because of the targeted      they saw an increase in business—just
                                                  messaging.                                    having your name on the membership
    Exhibiting: The great thing about                                                           list doesn’t quite do the trick.
    exhibiting at a conference is that it         Social Media: Okay, you’ve all heard
    allows you to go beyond that two-second       me bang the drum about social media—          Give Great Customer Service: It bears
    glimpse a prospective customer takes at       it’s free, quick and easy. I won’t go on      repeating—great customer service wins
    your ad and expand it into a conversa-        and on about it here, but I will make a       and keeps clients. So, make sure you
    tion. But here’s the trick, your exhibit      few quick points that your peers thought      answer every call, be the first one to
    needs to stand out from the other booths      were helpful.                                 send in a quote, and make your custom-
    surrounding you and catch the attend-                                                       ers feel appreciated by sending them a
    ees’ interests. One Member told me that       •	 Join LinkedIn: Unlike Facebook,            thank you and following up with them
    he brings a large section of a diseased or       LinkedIn is all about professional con-    to see if they have any concerns later on.
    damaged tree (8'–10') into his booth.            nections and allows you to put your
    When attendees pass by they do a dou-            full resume of professional experience     Keep Yourself Educated: Members
    ble take because they’re not expecting to        out in the open for the world to behold.   agreed that when they keep themselves
    see a tree. This surprise pulls them into        If your clients are more likely to be      current on arboricultural issues (by tak-
    the booth and allows for a conversation          from a business setting, many of them      ing classes, becoming certified, attend-
    to take place.                                   may be searching for you on LinkedIn       ing conferences), and letting their cus-
                                                     to check you out.                          tomers know about the extent of their
    While on the subject of exhibiting, let’s                                                   education—it definitely helps them
    talk about “tchotchkes.” Logoed/pro-          •	 Use YouTube: These days, almost            stand out from their competition—giv-
    motional giveaway items are always a             everyone has a phone that is capable       ing them an advantage.
    great way to keep your name in front of          of taking short videos, so why not take
    prospects even after a show; but here’s          a 30-second video of yourself demon-
    the trick—you need to give them some-            strating a new technique; showing a
    thing they are going to keep and use             type of disease, infestation or damage;
    within their business—so they’ve got it          or explaining something interesting
    to remind them to call you. Example, if          about a type of tree, and share it out
    you’re exhibiting at a conference for city       on YouTube. You can then also share
    planners, you want to give them an item          it on your website and on your com-
    that they will keep on their desk (not a         pany’s Facebook page—making them
    toy that they’ll end up giving to their          more interesting.
    kids), so when they need a Consulting
    Arborist they have your information at        •	 Blogging: I’m happy to say that many
    the ready.                                       of ASCA’s Members already have blogs
                                                     on their websites. Blogs are a great way

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists      12    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
NEW:	ASCA	Webinar	Series

Elements of A Successful
Arboricultural Consulting Practice
Thursday, March 1; 2:00 pm ET

Join ASCA for the webinar: Elements of A Successful              You’ll learn:
Arboricultural Consulting Practice. This free webinar will
                                                                 •	 what insurance you need
explore some of the major issues you need to address as          •	 how to determine your fees
you build a successful consulting practice.                      •	 what you need to know about contracts
                                                                 •	 how to determine what services to offer
During this interactive session our presenters, Jim Clark,       •	 what types of clients to work with
Ph.D., RCA #357, and Barb Neal, RCA #428, will share their       •	 how to get clients
experiences and advice in starting up an arboricultural          •	 what role business development skills
                                                                    and marketing play in achieving success
consulting practice, whether it be part-time or full-time.
Elements of A Successful Arboricultural Consulting Practice      CEUs: ASCA has approved this webinar
will examine some of the major issues you need to think about.   for 1 CEU towards fulfilling ASCA’s
                                                                 Continuing Education Program.

                                                                 For more information about this webinar,
                                                                 visit ASCA’s website.
< home

    Keep More of Your Income
    and Pay Less in Taxes
    By Lori Gordon

    Greg is a successful owner of a com-          order for us to sock more away for you       learn that these questions could all be
    pany. Like many in his industry, 2008         in the company plan. There are lots          incorporated into his company plan if
    and 2009 were brutal years for Greg; and      of rules that can make it expensive,         he made the choice to leave the “plain
    companies like Greg’s needing to make         since most plans force you to treat your     vanilla” world.
    difficult cost reduction decisions. Despite   employees the same way you are treat-
    this, Greg’s 2010 taxable income is up        ing yourself.”                               Customized Plan
    much more than expected, but he will                                                       Greg decided to take the plunge and
    pay less in taxes than ever before. Impos-    Greg thought, “Well, that doesn’t sit        engaged outside experts to create his
    sible? Here’s his story.                      well with me. I treat my employees gen-      customized plan and work with him on
                                                  erously already; we do a company match.      the best possible strategy for 2010. Turns
    The Problem? Your Success!                    So it looks like my choices are either pay   out it was not too late for Greg to shelter
    Greg hated, dreaded and stressed over the     a huge tax bill to the IRS or pay more       the full $54,500 for only 2 percent more
    annual “post-Thanksgiving” exercise of        than that amount in total because I have     per person than he was already spend-
    trying to predict and plan for his annual     to spend more on my employees in the         ing in his current plan. In addition, Greg
    tax bill. The more successful his year,       plan in order to create a tax shelter for    made a decision to reward his longest and
    the more he worried about accumulat-          myself? That makes no sense; I work too      hardest working employee with an addi-
    ing enough money to pay the tax man           hard for every dollar!”                      tional plan contribution. The most excit-
    the following April.                                                                       ing news was that Greg shaved $20,000
                                                  Greg’s Solution                              from his personal tax bill. His savings in
    During their usual get together, Greg’s       Greg’s solution was to get specialized       the first year alone more than covered the
    accountant told him, “Business was bet-       help and protect what he earned, with        cost of changing providers and making
    ter than we expected, and your cost cut-      no risk. He decided to talk with an out-     a one-time investment in a customized
    ting measures over the last two years         side expert about his options. He learned    plan document.
    really made a difference—your income is       that his problem was his “cookie cutter”
    up! We should be celebrating, but this is     retirement plan. Greg found out that by      Greg thought later, “If I do this every
    not good news in terms of your tax bill. I    investing in a customized retirement plan    year, I will have over $1.4 million in my
    was not prepared for the large amount of      document, along with annual consulting       own plan account within 10 years. Plus,
    taxable income you generated this year.”      to help him determine the best possible      under federal law, no creditor can touch
                                                  solution each year, he would have much       that money; it’s safe in a legal trust. I am
    Greg thought about that sobering news         more flexibility.                            satisfying all rules and regulations and
    for a minute. “Aren’t you supposed to                                                      can sleep peacefully.”
    help me plan for this and help me mini-       For example, Greg was asked some basic
    mize my tax bill? Can’t I just put more       questions about his business, including      Lori Gordon is a principal and the CEO
    in my retirement plan this year? What’s       his wish list for how much money he          of the MandMarblestone Group (MMG),
    the maximum?” he asked.                       would like to shelter for himself, what      located in Philadelphia, PA, but serving
                                                  he would be willing to spend on others       more than 900 clients nationally. During
    “Good idea” said the CPA, “The maxi-          in the company to achieve that goal and      her nine years with MMG, Gordon has
    mum we can shelter for you in 2010            whether there were any individual staff      educated many business owners on how to
    is $54,500, including your maximum            members he would like to single out and      customize their retirement plans in order
    401(k) deferral and catch-up. But, I’m        reward more generously within the plan,      to shelter more of their personal income,
    not sure what contributions would be          but without having to repeat that pattern    reward key employees, and control over-
    required for your other employees in          in any other year. Greg was stunned to       all costs.

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists     14    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
< home

    Change Your Passwords!
    By Gregg Marshall, CPMR, CSP, CMC

    The end of 2010 hackers broke into the       Even worse, if you use the
    Gawker user database and downloaded          same credentials to log
    its contents, including all the usernames    into your email account,
    and passwords. Gawker operates a larger      the hackers can go to your
    number of on-line news services, includ-     bank, or other high value
    ing several I read regularly. I figured no   site, and do a lost password
    big deal, the hackers know how to leave      request. Since almost all
    comments on those sites.                     those go to your primary
                                                 email account, if they can
    At that time I pretty much had a single      log into that, they can pre-
    password for anything I deemed “low          tend to be you and access
    security,” which was pretty much any-        almost any website or on-
    thing that wasn’t banking oriented. My       line account you have.
    banking passwords were much stronger
    and each one was unique. But for email,      Even worse, most peo-
    Facebook, Twitter, etc. I used that single   ple’s default passwords are
    password.                                    really lame. Here’s a list of
                                                 the top 20 passwords being
    Then I started getting emails from other     used:
    businesses that had some involvement
    with Gawker indicating that because of              123456                   Nicole        and even punctuation. And they are
    the Gawker disclosure my account(s) on              12345                    Daniel        virtually impossible for most people to
    those businesses might be at risk.                123456789              babygirl          remember.
                                                      password               monkey
    Why?                                                                                       There are some tricks to make a simple
                                                       ilove you             Jessica           word more secure, like turning “i” into
    Like me, most people tend to use the               princess                  lovely        1, “a” into 4, “e” into 3, “s” into 5. That
    same, easy to remember password for                rockyou               Michael           makes a word like “solitaire” into some-
    most of their accounts. So having the              1234567                   Ashley
                                                                                               thing like “50l1t41r3”, which is both
    username and password for Gawker gave                                                      memorable and hard to guess.
                                                      12345678                   654321
    the hackers a much higher chance they
    could use those same credentials to log             abc123                   qwerty        Being a bear with little brain, I decided
    into a more interesting account, like an                                                   it was time to go back to a password gen-
    on-line store that keeps your credit card    Those are the passwords hackers always        erator/remember program. I had used
    information on file (like Amazon). From      try, just in case. Please tell me you don’t   KeePass back in the days when you
    there they could add a new shipping          use any of those passwords.                   loaded it as a DOS terminate and stay
    address and go town. Unless your credit                                                    resident program. It worked, I just got
    card fraud department gets suspicious,       Security people will tell you the best        away from it.
    you might not find out for 30 days. And      passwords are truly random, are as
    it is a major hassle to dispute fraudulent   long as possible, and have a good mix         I’m currently using LastPass, https://
    charges.                                     of UPPER CASE, lower case, numbers   I started using it in my

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists     15     Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
< home

    Change Your Passwords continued
                                                                               WELCOME NEW MEMBERS
    Chrome browser to make it easier to keep
                                                  Timothy Back                                 Malcolm McBurney
    track of the many websites I have accounts    Cincinnati, OH 45241                         Ramsey, NJ 07446
    on. I have since moved to the Windows                   
    program version, just to allow my desk-
                                                  Michael J. Bova                              Alexander J. Nagy
    top computer to keep a local copy of my       Atascadero, CA 93422                         Okotoks, AB T1S 1T7
    passwords, just in case LastPass ever gets             
    acquired or goes out of business. That is
                                                  Laura Charlton                               Mark L. O’Dell
    becoming more important as I become           Ketchikan, AK 99901                          Kamuela, HI 96743
    ever more dependent on it remembering
    bunches and bunches of passwords.
                                                  Mark Crane                                   Samuel O. Oludunfe
                                                  Goleta, CA 93116                             La Jolla, CA 92093
    I also like that it can automatically fill                
    out many web forms with my basic infor-
                                                  William E. Eck                               Jeffrey R. Perotti
    mation (except when the web developer         Gaithersburg, MD 20878                       East Canaan, CT 06018
    was too lazy to properly name the input                  
    fields, many of those sites I decide aren’t
                                                  Konstanze Fabian                             Donald L. Picker
    as interesting as I originally thought).
                                                  Glenside, PA 19038                           Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowllon Hong Kong
    And the price is right. I have been using
    the free version and don’t feel con-          Rollin L. Haas                               Peter M. Shields
                                                  Somerset, CA 95684                           Ancaster,	ON	L9G	4V5
    strained. I might have to upgrade to the        
    paid version so I can get support for my
    iPad and Android phone, but I have been       Marc Hathaway                                Randall Soursby
                                                  Denver, CO 80210                             Glendora, CA 91741
    holding off on that.                              

    Also you should periodically change your      Jim Hosick                                   Douglas K. Yates
                                                  Barrie, ON L4N 6Y8                           Mentor, OH 44060
    passwords, especially for your high value                
    accounts like banking, email, etc. I like
    the fact that when I just logged onto my      Jason D. Jones                               Tom M. Yelvington
                                                  Paonia, CO 81428                             Billings, MT 59101
    bank’s on-line system it told me it had                 
    been 6 months since I changed my pass-
    word and required me to change it.            Randy Kile                                   Timothy D. Zastrow
                                                  Wenatchee,	WA	98807-3780                     Riverdale, MD 20737
    Bottom line is don’t use the same pass-
    word for all your accounts. Make your         Ian MacCallum
    passwords more secure, using a trick like     Bothell,	WA	98041
    I gave you or using a random password
    stored in LastPass or a similar program,
    and consider your email accounts as
    high value as any banking account you
    might have.

    Now, go change your passwords!!!!
                                                    Call for Nominations
                                                    ASCA is now accepting nominations for the
    Gregg Marshall, CPMR, CSP, CMC is a
    speaker, author and consultant.                 2013 Board of Directoars. Click here
                                                    to download and submit the Board
    He can be reached by e-mail at gmarshall@       Candidate Nomination Form., or visit his website at

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists      16    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
< home

                                                                                                   Blacklegged Tick Ixodes scapularis—
                                                                                                   Scott Bauer, USDA Agricultural

    Lyme Disease: Myths & Facts
                                                                                                   Research Service,

    for Tree Care Professionals
    By Richard S. Ostfeld, Ph.D.
    Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Millbrook, NY

    Lyme disease was first discovered in          be transported from woods to lawns by
    coastal New England in the 1970s and          mammals and birds, but they don’t per-
    has now spread throughout the north-          sist for very long, because the ticks are
    eastern, mid-Atlantic, and upper mid-         sensitive to desiccation and over-heating.
    western regions of the United States. It
    also occurs in southern Canada, Europe,       Myth #2
    and Asia. It is caused by a spirochete bac-   Edges are risky for Lyme disease. Much
    terium called Borrelia burgdorferi, which     less research has addressed this assertion,
    is spread by the bite of a tick—the North     but the few studies that have, reject it.
    American culprit is the blacklegged tick,     In southeastern New York State, stud-
    Ixodes scapularis. Lyme disease is unusu-     ies show that tick abundance is much
    ally complex both in its ecological and       higher in the forest interior than it is on
    medical aspects, and misunderstandings        forest-field edges. Some studies have sug-
    of the disease have led to the prolifera-     gested that people are more likely to get     tunately, the name persists in many cir-
                                                  Lyme disease if they live in landscapes       cles and helps perpetuate myth #3.
                                                  with a lot of forest-field edge. But this
 Acorn production                                 appears to be caused by human behavior        Two studies on islands off the New
                                                  and not the “tickiness” of edges. Lots of     England coast were highly influential in
   predicts future                                edge means many opportunities to cross        establishing the notion that deer abun-
Lyme disease risk.                                into forests.                                 dance determines tick abundance. In
                                                                                                both cases, deer herds were nearly elimi-
                                                  Myth #3                                       nated (Great Island, MA) or completely
    tion of many myths and legends. Clear-        Deer abundance determines tick abun-          eliminated (Monhegan Island, ME) by
    ing up some of these misunderstandings        dance. When Lyme disease was first            hunters, and tick populations crashed to
    can help green industry professionals         discovered, scientists thought they had       very low levels. Unfortunately, several
    and ordinary residents of Lyme-endemic        found a new species of tick never before      studies on the mainland of New Eng-
    zones to avoid exposure.                      known to science. They named it the           land, New York, and New Jersey have
                                                  “deer tick” because they found the adult,     found little or no effect of deer reduction
    Myth #1                                       reproductive stage to be abundant on          on tick numbers. It turns out that the
    Lawns are a risky place for Lyme disease.     deer. (The immature stages called lar-        adult ticks also feed on things like rac-
    Several researchers have estimated tick       vae and nymphs were more widespread,          coons, foxes, opossums, and skunks, but
    abundance on lawns, old fields, shrubby       being found on mice, chipmunks, deer,         these animals were scarce (Great Island)
    thickets, and deciduous forests of the        and many other hosts.) More than a            or completely absent (Monhegan Island)
    Northeast. They are unanimous in find-        decade later, careful study of the “new”      on some islands, so when the deer were
    ing that lawns and grassy fields support      tick revealed that it was not new at all.     eliminated, there was no other game in
    the lowest abundances of ticks, with for-     The scientists had simply found a New         town for the ticks. On mainland sites,
    ests having by far the highest. The dif-      England population of a tick that had         when deer are culled, ticks are able to
    ference between the tick population in        been described and named back in 1821,        crowd onto the remaining deer or onto
    a lawn and adjacent forest can be 100-        namely the blacklegged tick. Biologists       other hosts, so the total number feeding
    fold. Blacklegged ticks are unable to live    have rules for naming species, and these      does not decline. In addition, although
    out their life cycle in a lawn. Ticks can     rules reject the name “deer tick.” Unfor-     deer are an important host for adult ticks,

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists      17    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Lyme Disease: Myths & Facts for Tree Care Professionals continued                              Apps continued

    they virtually never infect ticks with the   lent food over winter and boost mice the          browsing and searching in both
    Lyme disease spirochete. So, other hosts,    next summer. Thus, acorn production               online and offline modes. Bookmark
    like mice and chipmunks, are essential       predicts future Lyme disease risk. Land-          or download your favorite TEDTalk
    for the perpetuation of Lyme disease risk.   scapes with many small forest patches             for playback anywhere, including
                                                 embedded within suburban development              AirPlay. Tune in to TEDRadio for
    Myth #4                                      are the riskiest places for Lyme disease.         instant, one-click access to a con-
    A benign climate is required for tick sur-   This is mostly because fragmented for-            tinuous stream of TEDTalks audio.
    vival. Ticks are very easy to kill in the    ests lose much of their native mammal             Share favorite talks and playlists with
    laboratory by either                                       and bird diversity, which           your friends, and much more.
    freezing or drying them
    to death. In fact, ticks   Landscapes                      increases Lyme disease risk
                                                               for at least two reasons.           Tree$ense—Davey’s New
    will die within hours if
    they’re held at less than
                                  with many                    First, many of the species
                                                               we lose when we destroy
                                                                                                   Mobile App
                                                                                                   While one can’t actually harvest $20
    about 85% relative
    humidity. This obser-
                                small forest                   or fragment forest—such
                                                               as foxes, weasels, owls, and
                                                                                                   bills from their leafy friends,
                                                                                                   trees do work for people
    vation combined with            patches                    hawks—prey on mice, and             in major, quantifiable
    the coastal, maritime                                      so mice thrive under frag-          ways. In fact, trees
    climate where Lyme           embedded                      mentation. And second,              may be one of the best
    disease first emerged                                      these same species, when            financial investments
    led to the notion that             within                  present, act as hosts for           homeowners make on
    ticks need mild cli-                                       ticks, but either fail to infect    their properties.
    mates to survive. It          suburban                     them or actually kill them
    turns out that ticks in
    the wild are extremely
                              development                      when they groom (mice are
                                                               poor at grooming). When
                                                                                                   Tree$ense is a new, free mobile app
                                                                                                   created by The Davey Tree Expert
    good at avoiding cold
    or dry conditions.
                                     are the                   we lose these non-mouse
                                                               animals, more ticks feed
                                                                                                   Company and powered by i-Tree
                                                                                                   Design. i-Tree Design is a state-of-
    During droughts they
    stay under leaf litter
                                     riskiest                  on mice, more survive, and
                                                               more get infected.
                                                                                                   the-art, peer-reviewed software suite
                                                                                                   that empowers homeowners and
    or in soil pores where        places for                                                       school children to calculate the value
    humidity is high, and                                     The complexity of the                of single trees on their properties—
    during winter they go     Lyme disease.                   Lyme disease system is a             from energy savings to increased
    underground to avoid                                      challenge. But, continued            property values. And, what’s more,
    freezing. Lyme disease is now more prev-     research is busting myths, unlocking              it helps people plant trees in areas
    alent in upper Wisconsin and Minne-          mysteries, and suggesting ways of man-            where they can gain the most ben-
    sota—areas with anything but a benign        aging our landscapes to reduce risk.              efit from their trees as they grow.
    climate—than in many coastal parts of
    New England, and the disease is rapidly      Richard S. Ostfeld, Ph.D. is a Senior Scien-      Here’s how it works for homeowners:
    expanding northwards into Ontario and        tist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Stud-     1. Visit from your
    Quebec, Canada.                              ies and is the author of a new book entitled         mobile device. The app works on
                                                 Lyme Disease: The Ecology of a Complex               most devices, including iPads and
    These myths are slowly being replaced by     System. Dr. Ostfeld will be speaking at New          other tablets, iPhones, Android
    a more complicated but still understand-     England Grows on Thursday, February 2,               phones and Blackberry 6 OS.
    able science. Numbers of tick nymphs,        2012. His seminar topic is: “The Fight            2. Enter your zip code. Hit calculate.
    the stage responsible for most cases of      Against Ticks & Lyme Disease Continues.”          3. Select your tree species.
    Lyme disease, are better predicted by                                                          4. Slide the ball to the diameter of
    abundance of white-footed mice than by       Reprinted with permission from the                   your tree (from 1 inch and up).
    numbers of deer. Mice are responsible        author and Massachusetts Arborist Asso-           5. Enter your tree condition
    for infecting the ticks with Lyme spiro-     ciation News. Richard Ostfeld, Ph.D. spoke           (vigorous and healthy, healthy
    chetes. Mouse populations explode after      recently at the New England Grows confer-            with minor problems, unhealthy
    years of heavy acorn production (“mast”      ence in Boston, MA. For more informa-                with minor problems, major
    years), because the acorns provide excel-    tion, visit                               [continued on page 19]

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists      18     Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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                                                                                                 Apps continued

                                                                                                    structural problems, displaying
                                                                                                    severe decline, or dead).

    The Story of Longleaf Pine                                                                   6. Enter the distance of your tree
                                                                                                    from your home (0 to 20 feet, 21
                                                                                                    to 40 feet, or 40 to 60 feet).
    By Patrick Anderson, RCA #475                                                                7. Hit next in the upper right hand
                                                                                                 8. Select the position of the tree near
                                                                                                    your home.
                                                                                                 9. View your tree benefits. Click on
                                                                                                    each arrow to the right to learn
     Longleaf Pine in grass phase                 With the European invasion of North               more about each benefit.
                                                  America came the beginning of the end
                                                  for the longleaf pine’s dominance. The         Tree$ense turns users into TREEcon-
                                                  wood was highly sought after for naval         omists, who can qualify and quantify
                                                  stores and lumber. Clear cutting was the       their trees’ benefits and place trees in
                                                  most common method of harvesting the           the best positions in the landscape
                                                  trees. Debris left from clear cuts became      to maximize these perks, including
                                                  fuel for fires that burned at an intensity     how much storm water the trees will
                                                  the trees were not adapted for. Trees in       intercept, how much carbon dioxide
                                                  the grass phase were ideal food for intro-     they will sequester and how much air
                                                  duced feral pigs. And so today longleaf        pollution they will reduce.
                                                  pine forests only cover 6% of the area
    Longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) was once      they once ruled.

                                                                                                In Memoriam
    a dominate fixture of the southern land-
    scape. Before European colonization           Efforts are underway to restore the long-
    longleaf pine forests covered 90,000,000      leaf pine forests through groups like the
    acres of land. The trees reigned from Vir-    Longleaf Pine Alliance. Longleaf pines                L. HERLWYN LUTZ
    ginia to Florida, and as far west as Texas.   are listed as vulnerable by the IUCN,
    These forests were home to many animal        so the next chance you get, take time to
    species, including the now endangered         enjoy the majesty of these truly south-       ASCA member L. Herlwyn Lutz died
    red-cockaded wood pecker.                     ern trees.                                    January 12 in a 50’ fall from a tree he
                                                                                                was working in on Orcas Island, WA.
    The longleaf pine’s growth and ecology         Storm damaged longleaf pine remnant
                                                                                                Based on a preliminary investigation,
    are unique. The trees are the longest lived    in Charlotte, NC                             authorities believe an equipment fail-
    of the southern pines, up to 250 years.                                                     ure is the probable cause that led to
    Some are reported to be 500 years old.                                                      his fall. Herlwyn suffered fatal injuries
    Fire ecology was very important to the                                                      from the fall; his assistant attempted
    longleaf pine. Mature trees are extremely                                                   to revive him at the scene but was
    fire resistant. Seasonal fires would elimi-                                                 unsuccessful.
    nate seedling grass competition, while
    creating a mineral soil required for seed                                                   At 77 years of age, Herlwyn was still
    germination. Unlike other members of                                                        active, still climbing. He was a kind
    the pine family, after seed germination                                                     and sensitive fellow and a dedicated
    the longleaf pine would hold itself to a                                                    and knowledgeable arborist. We will
    “grass” phase. Instead of putting on top                                                    miss him.
    growth, longleaf pines would concentrate
    their efforts in root development. Above                                                    A memorial fund has been set up at
    ground, long leaf pines will survive as                                                     Islanders Bank to assist his wife Bar-
    tufts of needles from 5 to 12 years before                                                  bara with the needs of this transition.
    reaching for the sky.

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists     19    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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                                                                                              ASCA Announces
                                                                                              New Arboricultural
                                                                                              Consultant Editorial
    Member Profiles                                                                           Review Group
                                                                                              The following ASCA Members
                                                                                              have stepped up to bring
                                                                                              their technical acumen to
                                                                                              the Consultant. We thank them
                                                                                              for their leadership and service!

                                                            year while he worked on           R. Bruce Allison, Ph.D., RCA #272
                                                            obtaining his CEUs, writ-         Verona, Wisconsin
                                                            ing the required reports
                                                            for the RCA application,
                                                            and expanding the consult-        Rex A. Bastian
                                                                                              Wheeling, Illinois
                                                            ing business, he was also
                                                            actively involved in lead-
                                                            ing Sierra Club hikes. In         John A. Eisenhower
                                                            November, he became the           Scottsdale, Arizona
                                                            19th person to have led hikes
                                                            to 278 peaks over 5,000’ in
    Ted Lubeshkoff                 Jeannine Lubeshkoff southern California for the            Michael F. Galvin, RCA #432
    RCA #513                       RCA #500                 Hundred Peaks Section of          Annapolis, Maryland
                                                            the Angeles Chapter of the
    Ted and Jeannine Lubeshkoff met in a Sierra Club. Joining ASCA and becom-
    tree nursery and were married three years ing RCAs has challenged, inspired, edu-         Michael D. Santos, RCA #430
    later. Jeannine worked as a sales associate cated, and furthered their professional       Pleasanton, California
    for the nursery and Ted had his own tree careers. Since attending the Academy,
    brokering business, Timberline Trees, they have been involved in tree surveys             Mark Wisniewski
    which he established in 1992. Jeannine in the Angeles National Forest, tree pres-         Encinitas, California
    received her Bachelor’s degree from Cal- ervation, appraisal, and risk assessment
    Poly, San Luis Obispo in Ecology and projects throughout southern Califor-
    Systematic Biology and, after attending nia. This year they attended their first
    Utah State University’s College of Nat- ASCA conference in Lake Tahoe. It was
    ural Resources, Ted received his Bach- serendipitous that one of the speakers
    elor’s degree in Natural History from discussed wind involved in tree biome-
    University of La Verne. Their common chanics the day after a once-in-a-century            Calling All Authors!
    interest in trees led them to change the windstorm hit Jeannine and Ted’s home-           ASCA Members
    direction of the business to a consulting town of Arcadia, California. Many of            have a wealth
    arborist firm and they both became ISA their current assignments stem from the            of k nowledge
    Certified Arborists. They were becom- windstorm that downed and damaged                   and expertise to
    ing increasingly involved in projects over one thousand trees in Arcadia and              share with fellow
    where an RCA was required. Their con- the surrounding communities. Becom-                 Members. If
    sulting firm went into high gear when ing RCAs has made Jeannine and Ted                  you’re interested
    both attended the ASCA Academy in confident in helping address their client’s             in submitting
    2010. Jeannine became RCA #500 one problems and concerns. They are grateful               your article for possible publication,
    year later, but Ted needed an additional to be part of ASCA, a professional orga-         please forward to Penny Willocks—
    year to meet the CEU requirement, and nization where people generously share    
    become RCA #513. During this past their experience and knowledge.

                      American Society of Consulting Arborists    20    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Member News

    Ed Millhous, RCA #350, and Jim                be carried on public transportation for        menting rare or new insect taxa found in
    Martin, RCA #277, recently took part          many hours to reach work sites. Hong           the mature forest canopy, (2) document-
    in the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the            Kong has a fantastic system of trains and      ing levels of insect diversity that may
    International Society of Arboriculture’s      buses, but is a very difficult and expensive   be compared to other canopy habitats,
    “A Day of Arboriculture at Virginia           place to drive. Often vehicles are hired       and (3) generating a list and collection
    Tech” for Landscape Establishment             for a daily rate to assist in work, and the    of arthropod species known to occur in
    and Maintenance students. Ed (a Hokie         tolls and parking can be a significant por-    giant sequoia canopies.
    Hort alumnus) originally conceived the        tion of the daily rate!
    event and has led this annual event for                                                      Randall’s experience in the giant sequoias
    the last 18 years!                            Another challenge which southern               began in 2004 with an assignment to
                                                  United States members will relate to is        collect lichen from the Sentinel Tree
    John O’Shea, after years of working as        that the humidity in Hong Kong hov-            at Calaveras Big Trees State Park. In
    a consultant in Portland, OR, took a          ers around 85% for most of the sum-            2005, he did an extensive assessment,
    position with Arbor Global, a company         mer months, from May until Septem-             inside and out, of the Big Stump Tree at
    that does consulting, vegetation manage-      ber. Coupled with temperatures that can        the entrance to Sequoia-Kings Canyon
    ment, and teaching/training with offices      reach the low nineties, this is unusu-         National Park. His hazard evaluation led
    in Hawaii and Hong Kong.                      ally warm weather for climbing inspec-         to the relocation of the park entrance sta-
                                                  tions. John has climbed professionally         tion and an extensive crown reduction
    John has been working with owner and          for thirty years, and has not encountered      pruning in an effort to minimize an emi-
    CEO Kevin Eckert since January of             this level of humidity or water loss any-      nent trunk failure.
    2011. One project included fieldwork          where else. He climbs with a water pack.
    and research of Timbermark™ herbicide         Both personally and professionally, John       He returned to Sequoia-Kings Canyon in
    application by helicopter on Schofield and    finds Hong Kong invigorating and very          2007 to participate in a multi-team assess-
    Makua military reservations, on Oahu.         different from Honolulu or the Pacific         ment of the Robert E. Lee tree, which had
    Another involved assessing risk of hun-       Northwest.                                     dropped large chunks of woody debris,
    dreds of trees to be used in a new zipline                                                   injuring Chinese tourists in 2006. The
    concession on the Big Island of Hawaii.       Randall Frizzell, RCA #361, continues          first team, led by Steve Sillett, did exten-
                                                  his role in giant sequoia (Sequoiadendron      sive measurements throughout the tree,
    Currently, John is living and working         giganteum) canopy research. In May of          paying particular attention to the distri-
    in Hong Kong, where he is in charge           2009, Randall returned to Calaveras Big        bution of dead versus living wood. Their
    of operations that include consulting,        Trees State Park with Peter Kerr, Ph.D.,       measurements eventually went into cre-
    including resistograph™ testing of trees      entomologist, to continue research             ating a computer model of the tree. Ran-
    at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.       begun in 2008. The year’s research was         dall and his assistant subsequently con-
    John also does aerial inspections of trees,   expanded because of a grant from Save          centrated their inspection in the area of
    and assists in teaching classes offered by    the Redwoods League. The initial work          the large decaying cavity located approx-
    Arbor Global.                                 included locating three giant sequoias to      imately 68 meters above the ground,
                                                  set flight intercept insect traps. The traps   where the trunk is in excess of 2 meters
    John states that one of the challenges in     were serviced every three weeks through-       in diameter. The cavity is 10 meters long,
    this uniquely urban environment is that       out the summer. Some of the research           extending into the trunk past the cen-
    the tools and equipment used must often       goals included (1) discovering and docu-       ter, leaving over half of the trunk cir-

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists      21    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Member News continued

    cumference missing. The question Ran-         Tree has offices in MA, CT, NY, NJ, PA,         considerable time to warm up, and has
    dall was attempting to answer was how         MD, VA and IL. Mike and his colleague           a hobby repairing household goods—
    much sound wood exists in the remaining       and fellow ASCA member Matt Weibel              keeping them in service for as long as
    trunk. Using a series of Resistograph tests   are providing a wide variety of solutions       humanly possible. In 2010, Steve was
    it was determined that the sound wood,        to meet client needs, including expert          awarded the True Professional in Arbori-
    which is supporting the remainder of the      witness services, tree management dur-          culture award, and in 2003 the Honorary
    live crown, is only 10–15 cm thick. Both      ing construction, and tree inventory and        Life Member award of the International
    teams concluded the upper crown will fail     management planning.                            Society of Arboriculture.
    structurally and that the trail should be
    relocated immediately.                        In addition to locations within the ser-        Philip van Wassenaer will present
                                                  vice territory, this fall the Consulting        on Conservation Arboriculture and
    Currently, two new species of insects         Group worked on properties in MI, WI,           Advanced Risk Assessment at the Long
    (both Diptera: Mycetophilidae) have           IN, IA, and MN as well as on a con-             Island Arboricultural Association in
    been described from the 2009 collection       tract with the City of Charlotte, NC.           Long Island, NY, in February 2012. In
    efforts: Azana frizzelli and Azana mali-      Some key landscapes Mike worked on              April he will present at the WCISA con-
    namoena (article in Zootaxa 2397: 1-14        include the Brody Learning Commons at           ference in Pacific Grove, CA, and he will
    (2010). The collection is being housed at     Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore,          also make two presentations at the 2012
    a California Department of Agricultural       MD, Trinity Church Cemetery (the site           ISA Annual Conference and Trade Show
    research lab in Sacramento, California        of Audubon’s mansion on the Hudson              in Portland.
    and is available for continued research       and his final resting place) in Manhat-
    by entomologists.                             tan, NY, and the U.S. Supreme Court             In May, Philip will be in Vancouver at
                                                  in Washington, DC.                              the University of British Columbia to
    The Robert E. Lee tree, located in the                                                        organize, host and moderate the Soils
    Grant Grove at Kings Canyon National          Mike attended his first ASCA Annual             and Urban Tree Conference 2012. Spon-
    Park has not failed yet. The National         Meeting this fall. He has been appointed        sored by Tree Canada and UBC, the con-
    Parks Service has not closed the primary      to the Editorial Review Group of the            ference speakers include ASCA member
    trail, which passes near the tree and is      ASCA Consultant, to the Editorial Review        William Logan and brings together five
    visited by hundreds of people per day         Committee of the Society of Municipal           leading soil experts for two days of lec-
    during the peak season. Many people on        Arborists’ City Trees, and as Program           tures and field studies to present the lat-
    cross country skis and snowshoes visit        Chair of the MAC-ISA Annual Meeting.            est concepts relating to ideal soil struc-
    the tree in the winter. As a result of the                                                    ture and biology. More information on
    measurements and modeling by the Sil-         Steve Geist, RCA #340, was presented            the conference can be found at http://
    lett team in 2007, it was determined the      with the Society of Commercial Arbori-
    tree is the 8th largest (by volume) tree in   culture’s Arborist of the Year Award at
    the world.                                    the 2011 ASCA conference held at North          David D. Hunter, RCA #408, Vice-
                                                  Incline Village. This award is presented        Chair of the City of Forest Grove, Ore-
    In October, 2011 Randall returned to          annually by the Society, recognizing a          gon Community Forestry Commission,
    Calaveras Big Trees State Park as part        selected commercial arborist for his or         led a teaching seminar in November
    of a crew to select and set up two giant      her long-standing contributions to the          2011, for the public on tree pruning of
    sequoias to be used in the filming of         field of commercial arboriculture. This         trees and fruit trees, tree biology and why
    a BBC adventure documentary series            year’s award was presented by Chris             the tree reacts to pruning and/or damage.
    called “A Year of Adventures.” After two      Ahlum, RCA #465 and SCA board                   The session that was supposed to be for
    days of exhilarating work the trees were      member, at the opening reception. In            an hour, lasted 1 ½ hours and had at least
    ready for Ben Fogle (http://www.ben-          the presentation, Chris mentioned that          14 members of the public including two and film crew to         Steve is a past president of both ASCA          city councilors. David was re-appointed
    climb the giant trees. It will be another     and SCA, and that Steve has just com-           this month to his position as Vice Chair
    year before the segment airs.                 pleted his 14th consecutive STIHL Tour          with the City of Forest Grove, Oregon
                                                  des Trees. Steve’s lifestyle tends to be sim-   Community Forestry Commission.
    Mike Galvin, RCA #432, joined the             ple and includes commuting by bicycle
    SavATree team as Director of its Consult-     all during the year, occasionally watching      Don Godi, RCA #444, recently published
    ing Group in September of 2011. SavA-         television on a set with tubes requiring        “Green Industries Data Toolbox.” As editor,

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists       22    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Member News continued

    Don is pleased to announce the data man-       sors please contact Bob Thibodeaux at            once said to me, ‘There are five duties lin-
    ual of twelve sections of useful information   (337) 684-5431 or email        ing each mortal path that leads to life’s
    (which includes a section on arboriculture)                                                     far border—To live, to learn, to serve, to
    was given a prestigious Merit Award in the     Ellis Allen, RCA #139, received the              earn—To set one’s house in order.’ Ellis
    Research and Communication category of         distinguished VISTA Award at the                 has done them well. Vision, Integrity,
    the ASLA Colorado 2011 design awards           Massachusetts Arborists Association’s            Service, Talent and Action…Is it VISTA
    program. The 300-page manual was cited         annual meeting last November. This is            or is it Ellis Allen?” To read more about
    for its comprehensive content and impres-      the MAA’s most prestigious honor, and            Ellis’ life, refer to The Arboricultural Con-
    sive body of information useful to students,   the award was presented by Ellis’ long-          sultant’s Issue Four 2010 article entitled
    designers, consultants and contractors in a    time friend and fellow ASCA Member               Faces in the Crowd: Arborist Has Deep
    most useful format.                            Jim Ingram, RCA #294. The VISTA                  Roots in Medfield.
                                                   Award (Vision, Integrity, Service, Tal-
    The manual is distributed by the Gre-          ent and Action) is given once a year to          Torrey Young, RCA #282, is in Indi-
    enCo Foundation, a Colorado non-profit         one tree care professional whose acts            ana, presenting at the 2012 Professional
    group that promotes all phases of green        and deeds serve as a guide and chal-             Landscape Management School held as a
    industry activity, through research proj-      lenge for all members of the industry.           cooperative effort of the Purdue Univer-
    ects and scholarships. Their web site is       In Jim’s remarks during the presenta-            sity Extension Service and the University                          tion, he states that Ellis was a “mentor,        of Southern Indiana, Evansville, Indi-
                                                   author and colleague: these are a few            ana. Torrey is presenting two sessions
    Bob Thibodeaux reports that five years         words that describe my friend Ellis. He          under the title “Extraordinary Measures
    since Acorns of Hope began—in the              depicts the saying that a very wise man          for Preserving Heritage Trees”.
    aftermath of Hurricane Katrina—the
    organization has donated and planted

                                                                                 Show you’re the best!
    over 8,000 top quality live oaks, and
    hopes to plan 10,000 more in the next
    five years. As founder of Acorns of Hope,
                                                                                 Click here to download ASCA’s Publications
    Bob was awarded two national and two                                         brochure and order form for a complete list of
    state awards for conservation.                                               logo items and publications.

    Acorns of Hope is a not-for-profit tree                                      Polar Navy Fleece
    planting initiative dedicated to restoring                                   Mid-weight full zip jacket, 100% polyester, anti-pill polar
                                                                                 fleece for warmth and comfort. Features 2 front zip pockets,
    South Louisiana’s eroding coastline. The         ASCA President Jim Clark    stitch shoulder yoke and adjustable bungee drawstring.
    project consists of certified arborists and      dressed for success!        S, M, L, XL, 2XL. Price: $55 S/H: $12 ea.
    tree advocates from across the country                                      Quantity             Subtotal
    who donate their time and effort to ride         Price $55                      x $55
    their bicycles and plant Live Oaks along         S/H $12 ea                     x $12
    the coast. The “Hope” for this mission is                                          Total
    to raise awareness of the coastal erosion
                                                    Payment Information
    crisis and the crucial role that the Che-
    nier Plain and her endangered trees play        Amount Enclosed $                             Check  Visa  MasterCard

    in lessening this crisis. The Chenier Plain
                                                    Credit Card Number                                       Expiration Date   Security Code
    provides the breeding and maturing
    grounds for most of the seafood catch of        Name on Card                                Signature
    the Gulf of Mexico, absorbs storm surge,
                                                    Shipping Information
    and is a key center for production and
    distribution of domestic and imported           Name                                        Address
    oil for the U.S.
                                                    City                                        State/Province                 Zip Code
    If you are interested in learning more
    about Acorns of Hope or want to join            Phone                          Fax                           Email

    our growing list of partnering spon-

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists          23   Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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                                                      Q&A: Tree Risk Assessment

    A property owner has a specimen               loss, and lack of anchoring capacity.          in their reports. Hopefully the consultants
    tree, which is the centerpiece of their       I would also discuss with the client how       know that live crown ratio does not refer
    estate, and is located near the house.        two independent Consulting Arborists           to the percentage of the crown that is
    The tree has good form and structure,         came up with the same conclusion. This         alive, but to the height of the living crown
    but has symptoms of decline, includ-          is the greatest convincing argument for        as a proportion of the height of the entire
    ing a live crown ratio of 10%. Two con-       removal. In addition, I would emphasize        tree. A ten percent live crown ratio would
    sulting arborists evaluated the tree          the difficulty making such a decision with     not leave a viable tree for most species of
    independently and recommend that              such a beautiful specimen, but all living      deciduous tree (the text indicates the tree
    it be removed because of extensive            things have a life cycle and this tree had     is deciduous). If the live crown was 10%
    decay in the buttress roots. When the         come to the end of its cycle. It was time to   and decay were present in the buttress
    tree was removed it was dormant and           remove instead of experiencing a poten-        roots, it would in effect leave one giant
    appeared normal to the tree company.          tially catastrophic failure.                   single-stem Lion’s tail; all the weight at
    During the removal, staff from the tree                                                      the end with not enough to hold it at the
    company may have made comments                I would talk to the contractor and tell him    base and very prone to failure.
    to the property owner that suggested          that everyone is entitled to their opin-
    the tree was in good health. The prop-        ion. I would explain that as a Consulting      While I may be certain that the company
    erty owner now has doubts about the           Arborist we are at the highest level of        provided the client with misinformation
    arborist’s report, and their decision         competence in our industry. When mak-          about the tree, I cannot be certain if they
    to remove it.                                 ing these types of difficult decisions, that   did it through malfeasance or ignorance.
                                                  are very sensitive, it is important that if    As they did in fact get the removal job
    •	 What steps would you take to help          he has a detracting statement to make,         they were hired to do, I can’t see a reason
       the client understand that your eval-      that he should keep it to himself. There       for the former. As it is likely the latter, I
       uation used sound arboricultural           was nothing productive accomplished by         would use it as an opportunity to estab-
       principles and judgments in evalu-         making this statement. There were two          lish market differentiation for the client,
       ating the tree?                            Consulting Arborists that independently        and to explain the value in retaining a
                                                  came up with the same conclusion. Do           consultant versus someone without the
    •	 If I’m certain that the tree company       not hire again.                                knowledge, skills, and abilities of a con-
       provided the client with misinfor-                                                        sultant. The fact that the firm could not
                                                  —Mark Crane
       mation about the health of the tree                                                       properly assess what they were looking
       should I confront the owner or just                                                       at is the best reason for retaining me.
       never recommend that firm in the           I am not sure what my assignment is,
                                                                                                 —Michael Galvin, RCA #432
       future?                                    and the tree is gone. So my evaluation
                                                  would have to be based on the two exist-
    I would talk to client about the live crown   ing reports.                                   If the client still has artifacts of the but-
    ratio of 10% and how that relates to the                                                     tress roots (such as firewood), I would
    tree’s ability to make photosynthates to      I would help my client understand that my      indeed use these as teachable memen-
    nourish the tree’s biological system. I       evaluation used sound principles by using      toes of the advanced decay.
    would talk to the client about the serious    industry standard practices, citing the
    loss of anchoring roots and the instru-       works and authors, and comparing them          I have had experiences like this, and usu-
    ments and time involved assessing root        with what the two consultants provided         ally do proactively arrange to have the

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists      24    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Q & A continued

    tree company keep what they feel are           arranged for the owner to introduce me          good work or providing good value, you
    some decent examples of root rot, or           to the tree expert who did the work.            might stop recommending them.
    whatever. Then a bit of explanation goes
                                                   —John O’Shea                                    —Scott Cullen, RCA #348
    a long way. To talk with the tree owner
    about rot is one thing, but to show an
    actual spongy tissue, near a seemingly         As background, over the last several            To help the client understand why we
    un-affected piece, is quite instructive. I     years the term “hazard tree assessment”         came to the conclusions we did I would
    have done this, explaining that hyphae is      has generally been replaced by “tree risk       show the client on the remaining stump
    invisible, yet colonizes tree cells, eventu-   assessment” and this is the term of art         what kind of decay was inhabiting the
    ally making them useless for transport         used in ANSI A300 (Part 9)-2011 and its         phloem tissue and explain again (even
    and storage.                                   companion ISA Best Management Prac-             though the report would have explained
                                                   tices (BMP), 2011.                              it) the significance of the decay. I would
    I once had a case where I recommended                                                          have explained why the decay would have
    a large Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga men-          It is not clear to me how a tree with a 10%     extended down into the roots and why an
    ziessii) be felled due to presence of two      live crown ratio can be either a “speci-        otherwise healthy appearing sound wood
    smallish Ganoderma fruiting bodies.            men” or of “good form,” but I suppose           center in the tree does not necessary
    Later, the tree expert who felled it told      that’s subjective. Let’s assume the tree        make the tree safe from failure.
    the owner and anyone else who was will-        was “in decline.” Let’s also assume you
    ing to listen that the tree was unneces-       are one of the two consulting arborists         I would have explained that a healthy
    sarily killed. He had found—in his cur-        who recommended removal and you rec-            looking upper canopy does not prevent a
    sory visual examination of the stump—no        ommended the tree removal contractor.           decayed root collar from allowing failure.
    evidence of rot except a tiny bit on the
    surface.                                       To answer the first question, you would         If the company that removed the tree pro-
                                                   simply explain to the client that tree health   vided misinformation about the health of
    I confronted him when I heard that this        and structure are separate issues. You          the tree, I would consider that unethical
    was being promulgated, and asked               could show the client page five in the          and more an attempt to belittle the author
    (politely considering the circumstances)       BMP. Two consulting arborists indepen-          of the report than be informative. It’s, of
    if he had used a microscope to exam-           dently recommended removal because of           course, possible that the company that
    ine the base for hyphae. I also asked at       structural issues and resulting risk. If the    removed the tree was merely ignorant of
    what point a tree of this magnitude (it        stump was not removed you might point           the significance of the decayed tissue.
    was around 30” DBH and very close to           out the extensive decay in the buttress
    many neighboring homes) is still safe to       roots. You might ask the other consultant       In either case I would not recommend
    climb. I informed him that these were two      to join you. You might also explain why         the firm in the future.
    things I consider on each case where I         in your opinion the tree was not in “good
                                                                                                   —Barrie D. Coate, RCA #237
    recommend felling/removal of a tree. I         health,” but tree health was not the real
    have climbed for thirty years, I contin-       issue leading to your recommendation.
    ued, and many times I have found myself                                                        Considering the rampant incompetence
    climbing something a crane could not           The second question is not about tree risk      that pervades our society, and the partic-
    reach, that was for all intents ridiculously   assessment. It is a practice management         ularly egregious misinformation available
    unsafe. I did it because, in my day, that is   question. Confrontation is seldom a good        to consumers via the tree industry, it is
    what everyone did. We used testosterone        management practice. You say staff from         normal, natural and good that people will
    where good sense failed.                       the tree company may have made com-             have doubts regarding anything they are
                                                   ments. You should confirm with the client       told about their trees. A report produced
    But, I continued, this is not what I expect    what was said and by whom. Maybe the            by an arboricultural consultant should
    of the current generation of arborists,        client misinterpreted what was said. You        contain substantive elements that prove
    or myself. I use the maxim that I would        might take the opportunity to educate the       the consultant’s conclusions, and the
    never send a climber up a tree I would         tree company owner about the difference         report should be written so that it can
    not climb myself. And a 30-inch Doug fir       between health and structure or ask the         be easily understood by the client. To
    with a butt rot? I ain’t going there.          tree company owner to be more careful           enhance credibility, I always try to refer-
                                                   about staff commenting on your recom-           ence credible sources so that any opinion
    All this could have been avoided had I         mendations. If this company is not doing        or conclusion that I present to a client is

                        American Society of Consulting Arborists       25    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Q & A continued

    based on what other experts have said,        failure due to poor taper and top weight.       arborist, addressing it on a point-by-point
    and not simply on my own word, belief         If the live portion is not at the top of the    basis may be appropriate. However, stick
    or work. I also try impress upon the client   tree, this indicates severe dieback of the      to the facts rather than the performance
    that reliability is a function of many fac-   crown and decline of the tree.                  of the other arborist. Focusing on jus-
    tors—that the credibility of a person has                                                     tification for your opinions rather than
    much to do with the knowledge and expe-       The scenario is not uncommon, and               discounting the opposition’s is a much
    rience that one has acquired over long        pits arborist against arborist, opinion         stronger and more persuasive approach
    periods of time. By comparing the quality     against opinion. For the owner’s benefit,       to take. What the client does with the
    of reports that are presented, the cred-      the reasoning and rationale of the three        information, or misinformation, at hand
    ibility issue can usually be ferreted out.    “experts” should be carefully considered.       is outside of your control. Ultimately, the
    Careful examination of the consultants’       The best option may be a meeting of all         client’s decision and the outcome of the
    reports is required to determine credibil-    four parties to discuss the situation. Next     situation is typically not your responsibil-
    ity. If you place greater weight on facts     best is to review why each party made           ity or assignment.
    that can be independently and objectively     their particular recommendations. This
                                                                                                  —Torrey Young, RCA #282
    substantiated, one report ought to be         should not be allowed to deteriorate to
    more reliable than a report that makes        a matter of questioning credentials. It is
    judgments based solely on an unqualified      about the criteria used to evaluate the         An arborist evaluated a large tree that
    belief. If comparing what an individual       tree, and the levels of risk tolerance each     has multiple targets within the drip-
    says verbally to what a consultant says       arborist is suggesting.                         line that cannot be relocated. One of
    in a well written and documented report,                                                      the assignments was to perform a root
    the difference in credibility should be so    Confronting the tree service connotes an        collar evaluation and examine the con-
    obvious as to remove any doubt. Unfor-        adversarial approach. It might be well to       dition of the buttress roots. The tree
    tunately, sometimes people are not rea-       frankly discuss the situation, and what         is massive and has 15 buttress roots.
    sonable, and human beings are capable         occurred, however. It is probably the           Through a physical examination and
    of choosing to believe what they want to      result of inadequate training of the field      selective drilling, the arborist deter-
    believe—reasonable or not. It is not my       personnel about what constitutes risk           mined there is significant decay in the
    place to correct them.                        and how it should be evaluated. Make it         first 6 roots examined, and more decay
                                                  a teaching opportunity.                         is suspected.
    Unless it was part of the assignment,
                                                  —Russell E. Carlson, RCA #354
    I’m sure I would not have recommended                                                         •	 If 6 roots (40%) have advanced decay
    anyone to do the work—if assigned to                                                             should the arborist stop the evalua-
    make a recommendation, I would have           There is no mention of how the observa-            tion and recommend tree removal, or
    recommended at least three different          tions and judgments were reported to               evaluate the structure of the remain-
    companies. In any case, a “tree feller”       the client. A quality report would provide         ing 9 roots?
    is entitled to his/her opinion— who am        sufficient description of method and justi-
    I to correct them (unless, of course, I’m     fication for opinions. Even if results were     •	 What threshold should the arborist
    assigned and paid to do it).                  only communicated verbally, sufficient             use to condemn a tree when signifi-
                                                  justification for opinions should have been        cant decay is found in multiple but-
    —Martin A. Shaw, RCA #470
                                                  provided. If not, then keeping in mind that        tress roots?
                                                  both the other arborists are entitled to an
    As written, the scenario says 10% live        opinion, and as are you, independently          To answer your first question, if the arbor-
    crown ratio. This means the live crown of     of them, provide support information for        ist has reached the conclusion, based
    the tree occupies only 10% of the tree’s      your reported opinions. Beyond that… the        on the partial assessment, that the tree
    height, and usually indicates the live por-   management decision, and the weight to          should be removed it is probably not nec-
    tion is at the top (some may interpret this   give to each opinion, is the responsibility     essary to continue the assessment. If this
    differently). I would question whether this   (and burden) of the client.                     is a time and material assignment it might
    tree can still be considered a specimen                                                       not be ethical to continue to charge for
    tree at all.                                  Not mentioned was how the information           unnecessary services. If, on the other
                                                  was obtained, but apparently not through        hand, the arborist cannot reach a conclu-
    If the live portion of the crown is at the    the client. If the client is willing to share   sion based on the partial assessment, the
    top, the tree is probably at risk of trunk    information provided by the tree service        structural evaluation should be continued.

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists       26    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Q & A continued

    To answer your second question, the              and detailed observations, with some             preserve the tree, at least for a while lon-
    arborist should recommend removal                testing and analysis to determine what           ger, is very high, then more information is
    when the combination of risk of failure          the anchoring capacity of the remaining          needed to assess the level of risk actually
    and the likely consequences of failure           roots are. It might be a good idea to per-       posed. In this case, internal decay detec-
    are such that the arborist’s conclusion          form some soil analysis, and a pull test         tion of the lower trunk might offer some
    is that that is the best course of action.       in high soil moisture conditions, to see         insight, as well as further excavation of
    It is not clear to me that a proportion of       if the remaining healthy roots are strong        roots. Excavating roots on the opposite
    decayed roots alone provides a threshold         enough to keep the tree upright in appro-        side of the tree might indicate the extent
    for action or a meaningful basis to form a       priate wind conditions when the soil is          of root loss more easily than continuing
    conclusion. In this case, for example, you       wet. It may also be wise to consult “The         circumferentially.
    describe targets within the dripline, but        Body Language of Trees” and “Land-
    you do not describe crown spread, first          scape Below Ground” to get an idea of            A consultant is expected to analyze a situ-
    branch height, tree height or other targets      the type of failure patterns/problems that       ation, and offer opinions on the courses
    outside the dripline. If the tree were to fail   are associated with the remaining healthy        of action. This may include making rec-
    at the base in the most likely direction(s)      root structure.                                  ommendations for treatments and assist-
    is it likely to impact those targets or miss                                                      ing with the decision-making process.
    them? Are there risk mitigation options          Each situation is unique and each requires       While the owner reserves the right to the
    other than tree removal?                         individual risk analysis. There just isn’t       final decision, the consultant has a duty
                                                     enough evidence out there in the world           to protect the client’s best interests, and
    —Scott Cullen, RCA #348
                                                     to say how much is too much decay in             that includes warning of safety risks when
                                                     the roots or to say how much risk is too         appropriate.
    If 6 roots have advanced decay that may          much for a particular tree owner. Judg-
                                                                                                      —Russell E. Carlson, RCA #354
    or may not be reason for removal of the          ment would play heavily into any decision
    tree depending on the orientation of             regarding this tree, and the owner of the
    those 6 roots. I would certainly evaluate        tree would have to make the call as to           That decision cannot be responsibly
    buttress roots on all sides of the trunk to      how much risk they are willing to take.          made with the information provided.
    determine where the weakest portion of           I believe the more information you have          40% of the visible supporting roots may
    the buttress root system is and to provide       about a particular situation, the better         not equate to 40% of the support sys-
    a more thorough analysis of the hazard.          the decision will be. In a situation like this   tem. “Drilling” is a non-specific analytical
                                                     (where the uncertainty is high), I would         technique. No information on the condi-
    The threshold used to condemn a tree             probably recommend that the owner get            tion or character of the entire tree was
    when significant decay is found should           more than one reliable opinion and to            provided. There is no formula that will
    be based on the relative location of the         seek a consensus.                                provide the observational and analyti-
    decayed roots.                                                                                    cal skills and judgment required to make
                                                     —Martin A. Shaw, RCA #470
                                                                                                      such a determination. An arborist needs
    If all the decayed roots are on one side                                                          to do as much investigation as required,
    of the tree the implication is that the tree     As with many scenarios, this one seeks a         within the scope of the assignment, and
    would/could fall in the opposite direc-          single solution, when there may be sev-          provide an appropriately qualified and
    tion through lack of structural support on       eral alternatives. We do not (yet) know the      limited opinion based on what can be
    one side. However, if decayed roots are          causal agent of the decay, or the overall        observed.
    evenly distributed around the tree, while        condition of the tree. We don’t know other
                                                                                                      —Torrey Young, RCA #282
    remaining roots are healthy and normal           relevant aspects, such as wind exposure,
    and evenly distributed, that presents an         type and value of targets, etc.
    entirely different level of hazard and the                                                        I assessed two large date palms that
    decision making process would be very            A loss of 40% of the root collar is close to     flank a swimming pool. The palms are
    different.                                       being critical, or maybe already beyond          an integral part of the garden design.
                                                     it. As with the first scenario, discussion       They are near the pool deck and an
    —Barrie D. Coate, RCA #237
                                                     with the owner/manager is necessary to           outdoor entertaining space, but are
                                                     determine the best course of action. If          well away from the house. The palms
    A recommendation for this assignment             tolerance of risk is low, maybe a decision       are matched with 30’ of clear trunk,
    would require thorough examination               to remove will be in order. If the desire to     and have full, robust crowns. But on

                        American Society of Consulting Arborists         27     Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012
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    Q & A continued

    one palm, at about 15’, there is a trunk       Palms are unique and do not respond          stem weakness is enhanced. There is
    wound that has compromised about               to decay or external stresses like other     little strength loss data for palms and no
    30% of the trunk diameter. I can find          woody plants (trees). Their trunks consist   formula applicable to the many variations
    little researched based information on         of relatively uniform vascular bundles,      between palm species. The opinion of
    assessing decay in palms.                      and do not include a lateral meristem        rating risk requires judgment, as always.
                                                   (vascular cambium). Therefore, damage        If in doubt as to your opinion, seek con-
    •	 What approach should I use in evalu-        from any wounds, or decay, is perma-         sult from competent peers and clearly
       ating the strength loss of this palm?       nent; the cavity will never close or be      disclose limitations (as always).
                                                   strengthened by new layers of tissue.
    If you are unaware of research or guid-        Therefore, as the palm increases in height   —Torrey Young, RCA #282
    ance on assessing strength loss in palms       and leverage is increased, the role of any
    and do not have sufficient experience
    with palms on which to base your assess-
    ment are you competent to have under-
    taken this assignment? You should obtain

                                                       ASCA Invests in the Future
    the assistance of another expert who is
    experienced with palms. See ASCA SPP
    (April, 2011) §1.1(E).

    —Scott Cullen, RCA #348
                                                       October 1, 2010 – September 20, 2011

                                                       The ASCA Board continued with the implementation of the 2009 Strategic Plan
    Since palms respond to a trunk wound               with an investment in developing additional educational programs. In addition,
    very differently than gymnosperms I                the Board continued the strong support of the marketing/branding program.
    would call a palm expert to evaluate the
    tree rather than make the decision myself.         Listed here are the major areas of revenue and expenses by percentage of the whole.
    —Barrie D. Coate, RCA #237

    Palms respond to decay much differ-
    ently than do other types of trees. Palm
    trees vary widely in density, and their
    outer circumference is harder than most
                                                                                                                 42%   Meetings
    hardwoods, but the inner wood is much
                                                                                                                  4%   Publications
    softer. They are also quite a bit more elas-                                                                  3%   RCA
    tic than other types of trees, and their                                                                     51%   Dues
    anatomical structure is free from knots
    and similar defects. Because of these
    characteristics, I would allow for more
    central decay than I would for other tree
    types, depending on where the decay is                                                                     Expense
    located. Palms fracture in the middle with                                                                   15%   Marketing
    higher frequency, so I would also have to                                                                    15%   Board
    take that into consideration. I would allow                                                                   4%   Website
                                                                                                                  8%   Overhead
    a similar opening size to other types of
                                                                                                                  6%   Membership
    trees. All situations are different and each                                                                  5%   Publications
    would have to be assessed accordingly.                                                                        9%   Task Forces & Committees
                                                                                                                  2%   RCA
    Ultimately, the owner must decide how
                                                                                                                 36%   Meetings
    much risk they are willing to take.

    —Martin A. Shaw, RCA #470

                       American Society of Consulting Arborists      28    Arboricultural Consultant • Issue One 2012

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