Category Archives: tree work

Pruning inside!?!?

I recently was contacted by a previous customer, where we had done work at their place of business. They needed us at their home. I could not have guessed that I was in for such a treat!

They have a giant two-story ficus tree.

Words nearly escaped me.

Things we learned – ficus tress drip when they are pruned, and that sappy stuff is poisonous. You need a broom, not a rake to clean up inside. And you need to wrap everything in a tarp when carrying branches out.

It was an honour to be able to prune this specimen.

If you have an interesting tree for us to look at, please call Reta at 204-730-0368

Renovations in the yard

While we are cozy behind windows, and underneath blankets, is a great time to dream about how we want to change our yards next spring. It is an excellent time to assess the shape, growth, and some aspects of the health of trees – when they are naked without leaves!

We like to ask what people would like to use their yard for – relaxing respite from the modern world, for the kids to run around, to grow food – there are many ways to design the space around our homes. I suppose the fancy name for how we look at your yard is “holistically” meaning the parts are interconnected, and part of a bigger whole. An example of a question I would consider is how does one tree being pruned or removed affect the rest of the yard? Or how do you want to use the yard? We once did a large removal of five spruce trees – lovely – but planted very close to the house. The homeowner couldn’t walk outside because there was so much sap on her patio and the surrounding area. It was a tough decision, but one that the homeowner ultimately was delighted with. She re-landscaped and now has the backyard sanctuary that she wanted!

My seed order came today, which means that soon we will be out there, puting our dreams and plans into action!

If you would love to talk space and possibilities, or marvel at this late in the season snow dump, call Reta at 204-730-0368

Life happens

Several times this summer, folks have told me how they should have taken care of this tree five years ago. Or they apologize for how overgrown something is. Basically, something is not the way they want it (tree, hedge etc) and it has been that way for a while. One lady told that she had lived in the house for seventeen years, and had been worried about the tree falling for that long.

Who knew I was in the good sleep biz?

There is an old Chinese saying “The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago. The second best time is right now.”

There are lots of things we “should” have done yesterday, last month, last year etc. But life happens. People get sick, or busy, or sidetracked, or focused on the kids, the job, the team.

If that tree is a worry – let’s talk about it. If those hedges mean you are losing sleep – let’s get on that. By all means, call Reta at 204-730-0368

Safety Stuff

I am always looking at trees and buildings. I am in the tree business and I love architecture. So that is what I am checking out while I am out quoting, running errands, etc. Last week, on my way home for lunch, I passed two “job sites” and I was pretty steamed. The first was two men without hard hats, hearing protection, pylons/flags, who were chipping branches adjacent to a major thoroughfare. The vehicle was not identified in any way, so I am uncertain who it was. 

Chris and I came up in heavy construction and know that young workers are particularly vulnerable to injury or fatality as they are being trained for their position. This is a tragedy of our times, and as an employer, we believe it is critical to train young or new-to-tree business workers so that they can safely perform their jobs. People will say that there “isn’t time for safety” or “being safe takes too long and costs too much”

We disagree. We train our employees properly, and provide them with personal protective equipment. We are covered by contractor insurance, liability insurance, and Workers Compensation.

This means that Chris and I wear PPE.

This means that if you decide to book Bee EZ Tree Service, I will instruct you on how to engage our crew safely, where to stand out of the way if you would like to watch, encourage you to wear PPE if you are coming around your yard/our jobsite.

There is a cost obviously associated with buying lots of hard hats, gloves, safety glasses etc – but that is the cost of safely doing our business.

Excerpt from our training manual “Safety is an attitude, that infuses your movement and approach to a task. Safety needs to be an automatic response to the situations that we will find ourselves in every day. People look at our work and say, That’s dangerous! No. Our work involves risk, and through training, planning, talking, and executing the plan – we mitigate those risks.” (Saborowski 2017)

If you would like to read about the questions you can ask your arborist, check out this post 10 Questions to Ask Before Hiring an Arborist or Tree Service

If you would like to talk about the good old days, and how we can safely take care of your trees and hedges, call Reta at 204-730-0368

10 Questions to Ask Before Hiring an Arborist or Tree Service

How do you know if the tree service or arborist you are hiring is up-to-snuff? How can you protect your home and family from injury and liability?

Ask questions! Do some research!

Here is my list of questions that I encourage people to ask me:

  1. Are you licensed? (In the province of Manitoba, you must show proof that you have passed the Arborist exam and carry a minimum of 2 million dollars in liability insurance. I carry a copy of our license in Dropbox and can email you a copy, upon request.  We are licensed through the Dept of Forestry…..>>>)
  2. Are you insured? (Tree services must carry a minimum of 2 million in liability, in addition to the insurance on their own equipment. I carry a copy of our license in Dropbox and can email you a copy, upon request.)
  3. Are the safeties on your vehicles current? (Dump trucks must be inspected a minimum of once a year, depending on the Gross Vehicle Weight)
  4. Do you carry WCB (Workers Compensation)? (If the business is owner operated, they are not required to carry WCB – unless they are subcontracting. If the tree service has employees, it is a requirement to be registered with WCB. Check the WCB database to see if you are hiring someone covered by WCB here.)
  5. What is your tree management/pest management philosophy? (There is no right answer here, I think it is important to work with someone whose ideas resonate with you.)
  6. How many years experience do you/your team have doing this kind of tree work? (We are celebrating five years in Brandon! Before that, Chris worked in Winnipeg for 2.5 seasons)
  7. Have you done this type of work before? (Tree work ranges from pruning fruit trees, to large removal in tricky situations. It is important to get a sense of how much experience someone has in the type of work you are looking to have done.)
  8. How do you plan the work? What is your felling plan? (I usually discuss how we will proceed with the planned work with my customers, so that we can discuss any surprises/possible challenges before the work starts)
  9. Do you have references? (Yes! You can check our Facebook page here . I can also provide you with additional references, if you need.)
  10. When can you get the work done/how much will it cost? (This is usually the first question, and it is an important one. Beware the person who can get it done immediately, unless it is an emergency. During the summer, we are usually booking 2-3 weeks ahead. We are subject to the weather, so our schedule may change! If you need tree work done because of other contractors, or because of a special date, we will make our best effort to fit it in. Beware the too-good price. A few times a year, we are called to finish up work that was started by a different outfit that got in over their heads or took the deposit and left.)
  11. BONUS QUESTION ~~ Do you need a deposit? (I accept payment once all the work is completed, and you are 100% happy. We don’t need to order any supplies, which is often why contractors take deposits. We do appreciate being paid once the work is completed, unless other payment arrangements are made in advance)

If you would like to ask me questions, call Reta at 204-730-3068

If you are buying or selling a house, check out Look out behind those bushes! and This Wild Trick Means Selling Your House Easier!

Call Before You Construct

In the past few years, we have started working with some of the developers in town, principally doing lot clearings before a house is demolished to make way for new constructions. This has been great. Chris and I both have a heavy construction/renovation background, so being a part of a new construction project is a natural progression for us. It is rewarding that these folks have us in to consult on the safety, health, and make a plan.

In some cases, everything is being cleared out. And in other cases, we will be working to preserve some of the existing trees.

When some of the trees are staying, there are several considerations. Our main concerns are root damage, and root compaction. Depending on the scope of the project, we may have suggestions for how to minimize damage to the trees that are staying.

We will work with you to install new trees. Asking questions about how you want to use your outdoor space, what kind of maintenance you can manage, (and how many raspberries you can eat!!) will help us to create your ideal place in the world.

If you would like to talk new backyard fun or maybe have us plant an apple tree for you, call Reta at 204-730-0368

 

We won’t be stumped

What to do with that stump in the yard! They are in the way when you are mowing, or trying to enjoy our short, intense summers! Maybe you tried to dig it out, or put a chain on it, or pour gasoline on it (believe me, we have see it all)

We come across a lot of stumps. There are two reasons for this – stump grinding technology has come a long way in the past few years, and if you are a on a budget, leaving the stump for another day makes a lot of sense. Why get rid of stumps? Aside from being unsightly, stumps can be a hazard to grass mowing, navigation, and can serve as habitat for bugs, and mice.

We have two machines to grind stumps – a highly portable precision machine, that can go anywhere, and grind anything and a self propelled work horse, a little robot that can make a quick job of even the biggest stumps.

Do you have a stump in a flower bed? In the middle of your yard? Call Reta at 204-730-0368 and we can figure out how to give you a beautiful yard, free of obstacles!

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