This was written by Sandy Cosser with Australian Skilled Migrant Jobs.
Were you one of those kids who spent more time up trees than on the ground? Did you get as much of a thrill from being in the tree as from being way up off the ground? Did you treat trees as your personal lounge, taking up books and snacks and refusing to come down? If you answered yes to anyone of those questions you might want to consider a career as an arborist or tree surgeon.
It’s a dream job for nature lovers, but what exactly does it entail?
Have trees, will climb
Arborists have to know everything about all trees. Well, not really, but they have to be tree experts and that means knowing about soil, surrounding plants, sunshine, disease, pests, water, pollution and even landscaping. They can work in the private sector or public sector and while it may sound easy enough, arborists actually need to be highly trained if they want to be successful.
Being a professional arborist is not as simple as pruning the peach tree in the yard and giving trees pesticides that won’t kill them. There is pruning, but different tree species have different pruning requirements. Pruning also has to be determined according to individual trees, their size and their location. It takes an experienced arborist to know exactly which branches to cut to get optimal growth, which to cut to ensure tree safety and which ones to cut to train trees into desired shapes.
They also need to determine when a tree is not feeling well, which is why they are called tree doctors or surgeons. Trees don’t get pale when they get sick; they don’t hold their tummies or their heads and groan. They might be sick for years before anyone notices that something is wrong. Arborists can tell exactly where there is disease or infestation and they know exactly how to treat it – removing branches or using organic soil and water treatments. They can also design systems that will help support trees that have been damaged by inclement weather or over-zealous kids.
There is plenty of work for arborists in private practice, which basically means that tree surgeons are called out to homes or business premises where they can treat sick trees, plant saplings, train trees and remove trees that are too far gone to be rehabilitated.
The can also work for municipalities as they are needed to keep phone lines and power lines clear of branches and they will have to go around cleaning up roads and parks of tree debris after severe storms.
Arborists also play a role in re-forestation and urban greening projects and in tree plantations to maintain the health of the trees and prevent the spread of disease and infestation.
Job prospects are remarkably improved by membership of national and international associations, such as the International Society of Arboriculture, the Arboricultural Association, the European Arboricultural Council, the American Society of Consulting Arborists and Arboriculture Australia.
This post was contributed by a guest writer. If you’d like to guest post for Naturally Earth Friendly please check out our Become An Author page for details on how YOU can share your tips with our readers.