Rural System
 Sustained rural lands; sustained profits

The Arborist Group

The Arborist Group is being discussed with Mr. Lance Moore of Mills Associated Arborists of Blacksburg, Virginia (540-953 - 1173 or 381-1953). The current work of Mills Associated Arborists includes removing small and hazardous trees, pruning trees and shrubs, consulting and giving advice on the role of trees in the landscape, suggesting tree selection and planting, diagnosing insect and disease effects, removing brush, and providing emergency services related to trees.

An affiliation with Rural System, Inc. may provide a new dimension to the business that grew under the leadership and expert knowledge of Mr. Mills over many years. Now owned and operated by Mr. Lance Moore ( , Mills Associated Arborists can become an integral part of The Arborist Group.

The Group is dedicated to caring cost effectively for and and managing individual trees in the rural and small-town environment. Clearly profit oriented, the Group gives special attention to enhancing the environment around homes and rural structures, reducing unfavorable views, achieving energy economies, and retaining the value in ancient trees and those of great beauty and historical importance. It has an educational role, one of increasing the appreciation for the beauty and functions of trees and shrubs in the human environment. That appreciation must lead to improved tree care, improved roles of trees, and, secondarily, to improved forest management in the larger rural environment. Obviously attuned to the science and knowledge base of forestry, the work of the group is much different than that of The Forest Group. It deals with the specimen tree, the landscape shrub, vine, and and tree-group. Esthetics, economics, and the pruning and removals of trees close to town structures assume special prominence over those activities usually encountered in forestry activities.

The affiliation with Mills Associated Arborists brings to The Arborist Group expertise, an operating successful respected business, ideas, experienced workers, advertising, recognition, and capital equipment.

The planned activities of The Arborist Group include those listed above as well as:

  1. Providing computer-aided tree valuation for insurance and other purposes. There are existing systems but an alternative is available and when operated by the hand-held field computer, provides information for subscribers for the service, standards and conditions before problems may arise, and a basis for litigation if needed in insurance claims against damage experienced from storms or accidents.
  2. Selling planting zone map. GIS maps of the conditions of the region (soil, slope, aspect, elevation, shade, water relations) provide information on the factors that influence the suitability of a site for any tree species. The map is a way to prevent future problems, suggesting what trees should not be put in certain sites just asking for trouble later from diseases, insects, and other stress related problems. In addition, a new planting zone map similar to that of the US Department of Agriculture and distributed for horticulturists, is available and will be sold.
  3. Mapping the trees of a landscape. Foresters map forest stands but similar single-tree maps can be produced. I made one for the Homestead hotel and resort in West Virginia in 1954. They are especially effective for neighborhoods and when ages of trees or sizes are recorded, they can chronicle the change in songbirds, early-morning noise problems, and even the advent of vertebrate pest problems (such as woodpeckers drumming on gutter drain pipes, raccoons at the window, and squirrels in the attic).
  4. Plotting specialized Solar maps (shading of gardens etc.) The relations with The Gardens Group seems evident and such a map will be used for shrubs as well as other plantings, with clearly-known separations into "shade-loving plants" and other classes.
  5. Scheduling care and treatment of mapped trees
  6. Developing replacement schedules and plans
  7. Estimating leaf volumes produced annually (with computers as a function of tree species and ages and health) for estimating leaf pickup costs and for moving litter to a soils development area (see Novosoil)
  8. Actively working with and promoting the Tree Tops enterprise
  9. Planting shrubs ( food and cover) planting for designed "wildlife backyards"
  10. Operating leaf pickup systems for processing and movement to soil amendments
  11. Chipping stems and trunks for moving products to soil amendments
  12. Doing commercial sawing of large stems and solar curing for uses throughout the enterprise (see Sculptors)
  13. Preparing Firewoodfor the Camps Group and sale to others
  14. Making specialized planting at Memorial sites
  15. Selling and installing giant pots, planters for trees and shrubs in landscapes and towns
  16. Laying plumbing systems for root watering systems
  17. Developing drought strategies for landowners and towns
  18. Selling town and county arboretum plans, installation and management
  19. Developing espalier gardens
  20. Conducting soil analyses for ownerships with maps
  21. Selling the Clumper, a single-person lawn leaf-pickup device
  22. Selling Ecorods, environmental health monitoring devices
  23. Selling specialized tree tag (names)
  24. Selling signs, made from the wood of "the special tree" (homesite removals etc.)
  25. Selling items (made from special trees or parts removed) as presents for families or friends that knew or were related to the tree (See Topics)
  26. Selling sets of drink coasters made from treated branch cross-sections
  27. Selling CDs and books for tree identification
  28. Writing and selling tree-related books including images in Stills and a corporate expert base
  29. Selling services and products to other tree-related companies ( competitive, the objective remains for improving the esthetic and related quality of the region)
  30. Promoting tree-related poetry
  31. Preparing tree health status reports for insurance protection
  32. Sponsoring tree identification contests for children and adults (including CD and Internet support)
  33. Providing brass names on all major town trees
  34. Developing web sites for members - special trees, big trees, tree health, trees and large animals, trees and interesting animals,
  35. Providing trees and moisture stress information - promoting the Heikkenen hypothesis and its study
  36. Promoting integrated tree health management systems (not IPM)
  37. Working with Pest Force for squirrel, bird, and related vertebrates-in-trees problems
  38. Displaying in public natural history of tree damage and related problems
  39. Doing post-lab-analysis tree fertilization
  40. Working with and study of sugarbush potentials in select areas
  41. Providing specialized expertise and care of the walnut vales
  42. Studying uses of waste and chipped wood and sawdust in animal care facilities ( goats, rabbits, geese, dogs) and for mulch or Novosoils
  43. Supplying wood as available to The Fence Group
  44. Developing specialized uses of The Trevey or a Trevey-like system for corporate and farm owner customers
  45. Conducting tours of trees of the rural area - diverse species, problem trees, superior trees
  46. Developing an expert system for tree care
  47. Developing an expert system for tree and shrub selection
  48. Working with The Garden Group in developing and selling computer aids to plant selection
  49. Developing life curves for each local tree species, then dynamics of the "beta-forest" - the total trees under management, as they mature over the 150 year planning period
  50. Responding to requests for proposals and initiate funded research activities
  51. Writing a book on managing the beta-forest (forest management as if each tree was a stand) producing leaves, cooling shade and energy conservation (Btu), wood, stems and firewood, viewscape component, wildlife nest spots, wildlife foods, disease risks, mosquito and micro-arthropod sites, local employment potential
  52. Providing a sales and pricing book and/or web site presenting available products and services.

See Giles' urban wildlife notes

See National Arborist Association and other associations

See praise of arborists

See West Coast Arborists

See Arborists Exam

See Trees Virginia and The Virginia Urban Forest Council, 900 Natural Resource Drive, Charlottesville, VA 22903 Phone 434-295-6401 email


Harris, R.W. 1992. Arboriculture: integrated management of landscape trees, shrubs, and vines, Second Ed., Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs,, New Jersey, 674p.

Delcourt, H. R. 2002. Forests in peril: tracking deciduous trees from ice-age refuges into the greenhouse world. McDonald and Woodward, Blacksburg, VA vii + 234 $22.95

Jahnige, P. 2002. The hidden bounty of the urban forest, p. 96-107 inE.T. Jones, R.J. McLain, and J. Weigand, editors, Nontimber forest products in the United States, Univ. Press of Kansas , Lawrence, Kansas, 445p.

Various definitions of "urban forests" are relevant. Herein we view the urban forest as all trees and associated plants and animal species that live in cities. It includes single tree streets, yards, vacant lots, and landscaped areas as well as forested areas. It may include non-tree areas like roads, trails, and ponds. (From, P. Jahnige, 2002:97)

Jahnige, P. 2002. The hidden bounty of the urban forest, p. 96-107 inE.T. Jones, R.J. McLain, and J. Weigand, editors, Nontimber forest products in the United States, Univ. Press of Kansas , Lawrence, Kansas, 445p.

Recent job announcement (January 2003, suggesting current state-level thought on "urban forestry.")

This position requires the following specialty areas: good knowledge of forest management principles and practices relating to planting, growing, and protecting trees in an urban environment; developing an urban and community forest management program; developing and conducting training related to planting, growing, and protecting trees in an urban environment; grant administration; supervisory practices.

* Plans and administers a statewide urban/community forestry program. * Provides information and financial and technical assistance to local governments and communities on planting, protecting and maintaining trees in urban environments. * Develops guidelines and standards for program.
* Provides staff support to the statewide urban/community forestry council and develops five-year plans.
* Develops budgets and priorities for program.
* Contacts communities throughout the state to encourage and assist with program implementation.
* Directs priorities and authorizes funding to communities through administration of a statewide grant program.
* Coordinates volunteer programs on state and local level.
* Coordinates the Department's Natural Resources Conservation Education program
* Coordinates and supervises special community forestry activities. * Organizes and conducts public information programs, develops and presents technical material relating to tree planting, pruning, removals and related urban tree management techniques.
* Coordinates and promotes the national Tree City USA program statewide

The Village Forestry Concept largely for wildlife, is closely related:

Village Forestry - Managing the trees of the village is the key to wild faunal system management. This at best is done with or through the village forester and includes: selecting best trees, maintaining a computer map of all trees, fertilizing and maintaining trees, protecting select trees, assuring that all ages are present and preventing periods of die-off and replacements, reducing pest complaints, harvesting autumn leaves for composting, and selective pruning (for safety but to retain feeding and nesting opportunities for birds). Tree surgeons may be trained and hired by the forester for select pruning, restoration, and preservation services. Most villages cannot afford a forester, given the other financial needs of villages. Thus, such expertise is in short supply even though the needs are great. A company can meet these needs and work collectively within an area, serving 2-5 villages cost effectively. Villages must collectively negotiate such services since the essential economies of scale for the company can only be achieved if the villages are tightly grouped.

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