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Should you leave tree stumps in the ground?

By Garden Care, Tree Care

There are lots of reasons you may want to remove trees from your garden, whether they’re overgrown, storm damaged or decayed. Felled trees will remain as a stump in the ground unless further work is undergone, so you should choose whether you’d like to leave it in place or ask for a complete removal.

Here’s some food for thought when deciding on whether to opt for a tree stump removal.

Is the tree decaying?

If you have a diseased or decaying tree, leaving the stump in the ground isn’t a good idea. Tree disease (such as honey fungus) can remain in the stump and spread through the underground root system, although it may have also had treatment via a herbicide.

The remaining stump can also be subject to insects and other pests making it a home, so removing the entire tree structure is a must.

Are tree stumps dangerous?

Tree stumps can become a hazard in the garden, especially in overgrown areas where it’s easy to trip over uneven ground. Every year, equipment such as lawnmowers is damaged after the blades hit a tree stump, costing homeowners money. Stumps are also unsightly to look at, affecting the overall look and feel of the space.

Removing tree stumps results in safer spaces for kids to play while unlocking the potential of the remaining ground. Additional space in a garden is always welcome, and you could use the area for seating or plant beds.

What’s the best tree stump removing method?

While many people think a tree stump removal involves extensive digging, in truth, one of the most common methods is to grind it down to just below surface level.

Tree stump grinding equipment has circular blades that chop up the stump into tiny pieces, which can be taken away or used to fill the space at the base of the tree, depending on what you’d like to use the new space for. It’s a fast process that removes the stump within minutes.

When to remove tree stumps

The best time to remove a stump is during the felling if that’s an option from the tree surgeons you’ve hired.

Removing the stump at this time means the roots won’t form suckers, which are new growths that appear in places such as lawns and between paving slabs. They affect the aesthetics of the garden while leeching nutrients from the soil.

However, don’t panic if you’ve left some in situ or moved into a property with old tree stumps still present in the garden. Tree stumps can be removed at any time.

Get more advice & a free tree stump removal quote

Do you need the help of a tree stump removal professional? Call the team at DH Tree Services. We offer a wide range of tree care options across South West London and Surrey, including Esher and Leatherhead. To get started with free advice and a no-obligation tree stump removal quote, contact us now.

How to remove decayed trees

By Garden Care, Tree Care

There are many reasons to justify felling trees in your garden or outdoor spaces, including overgrown root systems and crowns, but what if the trees are highly decayed? In these instances, a complete tree removal is often required, but there are several methods of doing this.

Let’s find out more.

Signs of tree decay

Keeping an eye on the health of your trees is vital if you want to maintain them all year round. This includes spotting the signs of decay (or rot) that affect the wood of the tree. It’s often the result of fungi getting in through an exposed area caused by a storm, tools (e.g. while pruning) or a woodpecker. The fungi will damage the protective bark, rotting other components essential for the tree’s health.

Signs your trees are decaying include discolouration or spotting of the leaves, holes in the bark, cracks forming, soft or weeping areas and visible fungi or mushrooms around the base. The tree may even start to fall down if it’s weak, struggling to remain upright under its own weight.

However, much of the decay is going on internally, so it can be hard to see that a tree is decaying until it’s too late.

Why remove a decayed tree?

Whenever you’re considering tree felling, always consult the services of a professional tree surgeon, who can assess whether the removal is necessary. If tree decay is caught early, it can often be stopped in its tracks and prevented from spreading, helping the tree to become healthy once again.

However, sometimes homeowners only notice the decay once it’s advanced, leaving the tree vulnerable. This means its damaged structure and weak branches may pose a danger to anyone nearby, and the entire tree may fall down in stormy weather. The safest option is to have the decaying tree professionally removed.

How can you safely remove decaying trees from your garden?

Decay can affect lots of different tree species, just like these elm, beech and sycamore trees we removed from a property in Reigate. While straight felling is often a fast, easy option for lots of tree removals, if the structure is highly unstable, it may be safer to choose section felling.

During section felling, your tree surgeon can use a MEWP (mobile elevated work platform) to reach the tree safely without having to climb its structure. This gives them access to the highest sections of the tree so that each piece can be cut down and removed in stages, carefully lowering them to the ground.

Maintain your trees

If you’d like to maintain your trees, book an inspection with one of our tree surgeons to keep them healthy all year round. We offer a wide variety of tree care services, including pruning and crown thinning.

We work across South West London and Surrey, coming out to Dorking, Crawley and Horley. To get expert advice about the health of your trees, call DH Tree Services now on 01737 215 718 or 07872 615 504.

Wind protection for trees

By Garden Care, Tree Care

The UK has faced lots of stormy weather in recent times, causing havoc to trees, whether they’re planted in gardens, parks, commercial sites or public spaces. However, there are some great ways to improve the health of trees and help them become as weather resistant as possible.

Here’s our expert advice about wind protection for trees.

Will your tree fall down in strong winds?

When stormy weather is on the way, many people worry about whether their trees will survive when faced with harsh conditions and heavy winds. After a storm, professional tree surgeons often get calls about damaged trees, and unfortunately, some of these can’t be saved.

It’s important to look after and maintain your trees all year round to help them stay as robust as possible, withstanding extreme wind speeds. Always ask a professional tree surgeon to assess them, as they may be able to advise about any areas of vulnerability, including diseased trees, weak branches, top heavy structures (e.g. overgrown or dense crowns) and compromised root systems.

Luckily, there are some ways to help your trees become more storm resistant.

How can you make trees more wind resistant?

While you may want to make trees wind ‘resistant’, the trick is actually to help air move more freely through the crown. If wind can’t penetrate an overgrown canopy, it’s more likely to knock it down. Therefore, one of the best ways to protect your trees from damage in strong gales is crown thinning.

This technique requires expert knowledge and methods to ensure the pruning process doesn’t cause the branches to become more vulnerable and uprooting more likely. DIY tree pruning often ends up with large branches being removed that were keeping the tree safe and stable.

How does crown thinning work?

Crown thinning reduces the density of the top part of the tree, removing some carefully selected secondary branches to prevent ‘sail’, which is often one of the reasons trees become vulnerable in storms and strong winds. This allows air to move naturally through the crown without harming the tree’s natural shape and size.

Other benefits of crown thinning include letting more natural sunlight into your garden, removal of dead or weak branches and reducing the weight of some of the limbs.

However, there are other pruning methods your tree surgeon may recommend. This includes crown lifting to prune low hanging branches or formative pruning to improve the yield of fruit trees.

Maintain your trees all year round

If you’d like to find reliable, local tree care solutions, contact the team at DH Tree Services. We offer expert advice and services, including professional tree pruning, helping trees to remain strong and healthy in all weathers.

We cover South West London, Surrey and surrounding areas, coming out to gardens and grounds in Cobham, Coulson and Epsom.

For expert advice or to arrange a visit, call now on 01737 215 718 or 07872 615 504. Alternatively, send us a message at, and we’ll get back to you.

How to improve the health of your trees

By Garden Care, Tree Care

If you want to enjoy your garden or outdoor spaces, keeping on top of tree maintenance is a must. If you don’t look after their health, it can affect everything from their growth to appearance.

Luckily, there are some really good ways to improve the health of your trees, so why not add some of these ideas to your garden plans this year?

Reshape & trim your trees

If you want to keep them in good condition, pruning and reshaping your trees is a great idea.

By removing deadwood, you can encourage healthy growth in the direction you want, creating a more pleasing aesthetical appearance for your garden. Trimming your trees also enhances their structure and strength, removing limbs at their origin.

Performing pruning at the right time of year and using appropriate techniques is essential. Otherwise, you could cause damage that takes years to correct. Therefore, it’s often best to consult an expert arborist about tree trimming services.

Crown thinning

If you want a more subtle option than a complete reduction, crown thinning is a great solution, removing just 30% of this area of the tree. This can provide trees with more storm damage protection while allowing them to move through natural growth cycles.

The thinning process involves the selective removal of some of the inner branches evenly throughout the crown. This permits light through for a brighter garden and improves air circulation without changing the tree’s shape.

Recognise tree disease

Do you know how to recognise the different types of tree disease? By spotting the signs, you can help trees stay as healthy as possible while stopping diseases from spreading from one plant to the next.

If you see anything unusual, such as leaves dying back when you’d expect more growth (e.g. in the warmer months of the year), there could be a problem. You may also notice weeping, unusual coloured sap and lesions at the point branches meet the tree. If you think a plant may have become diseased, you can call a tree surgeon to inspect it to confirm.

There are lots of different solutions available, including the removal of diseased tree branches and the application of fungicide treatments. Regular pruning can also reduce the spread of pests, which can easily move throughout a tree when the canopy is densely packed.

Get advice from a tree surgeon

If you’d like an expert to assess your trees and recommend some of the best ways to improve their health, contact our team today. At DH Tree Services, we offer a variety of expert tree care solutions, from crown reduction and thinning to felling services.

We come out to Surrey, South West London and surrounding areas, offering our tree services in Chessington, Croydon and Purley. For a no-obligation chat about how we can help, please call now on 01737 215 718 or 07872 615 504.

Why reshape your trees?

By Garden Care, Tree Care

Whether you’re trimming trees to maintain their condition or trying to stop branches from becoming too overgrown, tree maintenance is one of the most important aspects of any garden care regime. However, have you thought about reshaping your trees?

There are lots of benefits of tree pruning, from encouraging healthy growth to changing the appearance of the crown. Here’s everything you need to know.

What are the benefits of regular tree pruning?

Regular professional tree pruning can help you create the shape you want for your trees, encouraging them to grow in a particular direction or grow healthier than before.

It’s an opportunity to remove deadwood from the plant while controlling the growth, minimising the risks of dead branches causing damage by falling. For example, it may involve crown thinning to take away secondary branches to help your trees ‘sail’ better through stormy weather.

Pruning can also prevent pests from spreading by reducing the density of the crown and stopping overcrowded branches from rubbing up against each other.

Moreover, trimming trees can actually encourage new growth, leading to healthier flowering while strengthening the existing branches.

Can anyone reshape a tree?

Tree pruning is often best left to professionals if you’re unsure about what you’re doing, as it could cause damage to the tree if you use the wrong techniques.

Creating the right shape takes an understanding of how trees grow, knowledge about the shapes that work best in a space and the effect of cutting away certain sections. If you make a mistake, it can take many years to rectify.

A professional tree surgeon will make strategic decisions about the right cuts to perform while quickly identifying any deadwood affecting the tree’s health.

Best ways to reshape garden trees

There are many different ways to reshape garden trees, so ask your local tree surgeon to recommend the best tactic to keep yours as healthy as possible. Formative pruning is a particularly important method of shaping trees and hedges in their early years, especially in fruit trees that need a strong network of branches.

Essential tasks may include work completed to the crown, such as reducing its size or removing dead and decayed branches. An arborist may also suggest thinning the crown to allow more light into your outdoor spaces or ‘lifting’, which involves removing lower branches to encourage more canopy growth above and expanded views from underneath.

Some tree species may also qualify for pollarding. This technique involves removing most of a tree’s branches to quickly manage its growth towards vulnerable sites such as power lines and buildings.

Ask your local tree surgeon for advice

Are you looking for a reliable tree surgeon who can help with all your tree pruning needs? At DH Tree Services, we’re highly experienced in tree care solutions, working across Surrey and South West London locations such as Caterham and Cheam.

For more information and expert advice, contact us now.

The benefits of tree stump grinding

By Tree Care, Tree Removal

After a tree removal, a stump will usually be left in the ground, so you’ll need to decide whether to leave it there or not. Most people want the entire structure removed, including the tree stump, but this requires a different method than felling. One of the best options is stump grinding, thanks to its speed, effectiveness and overall results.

Here are just some of the benefits of tree stump grinding.

Fast tree stump removals

Stump grinding is a fast tree stump removal process, saving you a lot of time. The grinders quickly break up the remaining stump using high-speed blades, including sections below ground level.

Most people ask for stump grinding at the same time as the tree is felled, completely removing the structure to prepare the ground for its next use.

This removes the hassle of trying to remove the stump from the ground yourself, and you can also ask your tree surgeon to remove other old stumps left behind in the past.

Environmentally friendly technique

Rather than using harsh herbicide treatments to kill the stump, grinding is the most environmentally friendly removal technique. It leaves wood chippings and sawdust that can be used to fill the remaining hole, or you can ask your tree surgeon to take it away. Just let them know what you intend to use the ground for so that they can advise you appropriately.

Create garden space

Tree stumps left in the ground are a nuisance as they take up a lot of space, restricting the potential use of the land. They can even cause a trip hazard, which is particularly dangerous if there are any sharp points on the stump.

Rather than using chemical treatments that slowly kill the stump, grinding methods will give you the ground back for replanting, turfing, paving or a new seating area.

Grinders can be used for all tree stump sizes, even those located in narrow spots. This gives you more options if you’re landscaping your garden by freeing up the space for something else.

Stop the spread of tree disease

Stumps are often left from structures that were removed due to tree disease and pests, but that doesn’t always stop the issue from spreading to other plants and trees in the area. The grinding machines used will destroy the stump to several inches below the ground, removing diseased bark.

Stumps left in the ground can also look unsightly over time as they decay, and any pest infestation will get worse. Therefore, by completely removing them, it improves the overall health and appearance of your outdoor space.

Work with your local tree surgeon

If you need tree stump removal services in Surrey or South West London, get in touch with DH Tree Services. We provide both tree stump treatments and stump grinding solutions across Ashtead, Bookham and surrounding areas.

For a no-obligation chat and tree services quote, contact us now on 01737 215 718, 07872 615 504 or email

How to identify a diseased tree and prepare for tree removal

How can you recognise a diseased tree?

By Tree Care, Tree Removal

If you’re thinking about hiring an arborist for tree removal services, perhaps you’re worried the plant has become diseased, which is a growing problem facing many UK trees. However, it’s important to establish if this is the case, or you may end up felling a tree that can be saved and preserved.

Here’s everything you need to know to help you make smart decisions about the health of your trees. Read More

How to resolve tree disputes with your neighbours

By Tree Care

In the UK, neighbourly disputes can escalate to the point of litigation, which is an incredibly expensive and time-consuming process. In fact, the Ministry of Justice recently found that there are over 1000 serious neighbour disputes each year, which end up ranging from £50,000 to £100,000 in court costs. Naturally, this is something most people want to avoid!

The topic of neighbour disputes is very wide ranging. They can often concern things like noise, parking, boundaries and, of course, trees.

So, in order to avoid coming to blows with your neighbours, how do you go about resolving an issue about trees on your properties?

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The Main Mistakes People Make When Trimming Their Trees

By Tree Care

Trees are an important part of any outdoor space and are proven to have a positive effect on both our mental and physical wellbeing. They become a beloved part of our gardens and often provide a nice outlook for neighbours and the local community, which is why it’s essential to ensure you don’t make any avoidable mistakes when trimming them.

Here are four of the most common mistakes people make when trimming their trees, and how to avoid them.

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How to Deal with a Tree Preservation Order (TPO)

By Tree Care

If you have a tree on your property that you wish to remove, you’ll need to ensure it doesn’t have a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) over it before you take any action, such as pollarding or tree removal. If you are looking to do anything with a tree under a TPO on your property, you will need to obtain permission from your local authority, or potentially face Crown Court action which could result in an unlimited fine. Read More