Hi. I've been a tree surgeon on and off for years and I got up a tree today and just thought there are still some basic things that I don't know.
The tree was quite a big cypress (macrocarpa). The leader stem had been taken out of it so it had a bit of a strange shape. However, I could get a fairly good central anchor point which allowed me to get out to the limbs quite well, although I did have to climb about a bit to get from my anchor point to some of the other limbs. The job was to deadwood it and take out any crossing branches. My technique was this: - After I had put my anchor point in, I went back down and cut of all the major deadwood (there was quite a lot of fairly big dead branches) from the central stem, and then went up the limbs (which were pretty vertical) and cut off deadwood. I left little stubs because it was quite difficult to climb just on "naked" limbs, and then, after I had cut all the deadwood out from that limbs, I used the stobs to help me "descend" the limb; got back to the central stem, and then did the same on the other limbs.
It took the whole day to do it.
The tree was about 65 foot tall and about 30 foot wide, and there was a lot of stuff coming out, but I just had the feeling I could have done it more efficiently, especially as I found myself going up and down the same limbs a few times and getting in a bit of a muddle - has anybody got any tips on a) whether there are any hard and fast rules for deadwooding (ie, always cut the deadwood out from bottom of tree first and work back up), and b) wether there are any tips for getting round a tree which has several limbs which all need to be climbed?
Any tips would be very gratefully recieved.
Get a MEWP, cherry picker, hoist in there if you can - horses for courses, its good to use your nut for thinking. Even if just for getting the anchor points.
When you were up the top it might have been useful to put another anchor or two in with either other ropes or a throw line (another line would also help as a safety line in case someone had to come up and stop the bleeding). You could then have pruned on the way down and on the way up, or at least had branches to climb on the way up. If each stem needed climbing to put a new anchor in use the original anchor point as the lifeline whilst scrambling up, then swap over when up there and deadwood on the way down.
Don't see why you cant dead wood on the way down, might even knock some deadwood off with the falling bits, save on petrol.
Doing significant pruning from the top down can get bits all hung up, but you can chop the branches in smaller bits and tell your groundie to pull his finger out (only joking a good groundie is worth looking after). I have always reduced trees from the top down.
If the tree is really 'busy' clear out all the majority on the way up to get it out the way so you can move and use the rest to stand on on the way down to remove the remainder - less removing of stubs i.e. less cuts, ropes get snagged on stubs, ribs get broken by stubs, less climbing on slippery stubby stubs (you know the ones that are small enough to leave).
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