Tree care tips from a Portland tree service expert
Curtis Falbo, owner
Wind Thin Tree Service
What services do you offer and what do I need to know about tree care?
"We do pruning, stump grinding, removals and hazard assessment. We do some regular maintenance, too. Having trees or shrubs trimmed two or three times a year is usually more than enough. We could do fir trees every five, seven or 10 years, depending on the condition. A fruit tree could be done every year.
"A lot of times, leaves, cones, nuts, or fruit falls out of the trees, and the homeowner will want the tree removed because it's so messy. We try not to do that, though. Instead, we advise them on what we can do to save the tree and show them how it's providing something they didn't think about, like shade. Removal's a last resort.
"Sometimes the problems we see are just neglect. A lot of times, people don't understand that they have a potential hazard, like a tree that may be too heavy on one side. We also see property damage. People may have planted live Christmas trees, and now they're growing and breaking foundations and driveways and really creating havoc.
"If a tree is smaller, we'll show homeowners how to prune it. It's fairly simple, and that way they can maintain their trees themselves. We explain to them what to look for and what defects trees can have.
"We give an estimate for each job. Typically, we have a $250 minimum, but we do all kinds of work. We just finished a $10,000 job. Right now, we have a month of work in front of us, so people should call in advance. We'll try to fit in smaller jobs, and if something needs to be done quickly, we'll accommodate the best we can.
"If we have inclement weather or a lot of storm damage, everybody gets put on hold and we do the emergency work, then get back to our regular duties.
"We're licensed, bonded and insured, and that's something people should look for when hiring a tree service. I'd suggest they call the contractor's board to check a company out and make sure their license is current. Look at what kind of condition the service's equipment is in.
"Ask for references. Angie's List is helpful with that; I can tell customers I'm highly rated.
"We won't leave the job until the homeowner's 100 percent satisfied. We've had a lot of happy customers. We're a very conscientious, hands-on, family-run company, and we value what our customers say about us.
"Our employees look very presentable and professional, and we pride ourselves on this. We always take time to talk to people and answer any questions they have."