MIS313 Tree Health and Maintenance

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This book is one in a series of Minimum Industry Standards produced by Arboriculture Australia Ltd in consultation with the national industry community. These peer-reviewed documents explain the core standards of skills and equipment with which practitioners should be familiar. 


This standard covers the various inter-related work tasks of cultural remediation, chemical application and other tree care practices, which together are described as tree maintenance. A brief summary is provided of the underpinning tree health knowledge necessary to identify tree stress symptoms and causes and select treatments. This standard is not a ‘standalone’ document, and must be read in conjunction with other relevant Minimum Industry Standards which describe safe arboricultural work practices.


Contents:


Maintaining trees

  • Introduction to tree maintenance 

  • How to use this Minimum Industry Standard 


1: Tree health and physiology 


The tree as a living organism 


Tree identification 

  • Using botanical nomenclature 

  • The use of common names 

  • Age class of tree 

  • Seasonal variations 


Tree physiological functions 

  • Photosynthesis 

  • Limiting factors for photosynthesis 

  • Transpiration 

  • Transpirational rate 

  • Respiration 

  • Respiration rates 

  • Reproduction 

  • Tree vascular systems 

  • Xylem and phloem 

  • Xylem: tracheids and vessels 

  • Phloem 

  • Tree bark 

  • Compartmentalisation and barriers to decay 

  • Occlusion 


Trees and soils 

  • Physical properties of soils 

  • Soil profiles 

  • Soil texture 

  • Soil texture triangle 

  • Field test for soil texture 

  • Soil compaction 

  • Soil water 

  • Drainage 

  • Chemical properties of soil 

  • Biological properties of soil 

  • Soil nutrients 

  • Tree roots 

  • Root architecture 

  • Water absorption into tree roots 

  • Nutrient absorption into tree roots 

  • Mycorrhizae 

  • The effects of fertiliser of mycorrhizal fungi 

  • Nitrogen-fixing bacteria 

  • Soil build-up and soil sealing 


Tree physical structure 

  • The tree as a biomechanical structure 

  • Axiom of uniform stress 

  • Thigmomorphogenesis 

  • Tree growth habits 

  • Growth habit and structure 

  • Branch and stem attachment 

  • Strength of branch and stem unions 

  • Co-dominant stems 

  • Crossing or rubbing branches 

  • Natural bracing 

  • Epicormic shoots 


2: Tree disorders 

  • How to use this chapter 

  • Tree stress 

  • Symptoms of stress 

  • Tree disorder diagnostic process 

  • Diagnostic table 1: diagnostic process 

  • Diagnostic table 2: observable symptoms 


Abiotic disorders 

  • Soil compaction or poor drainage 

  • Soil quality 

  • Contamination 

  • Environmental conditions 

  • Sunburn and sunscald 

  • Weather events 

  • Light intensity and duration 

  • Temperature extremes 

  • Lightning damage 

  • Wind direction and intensity 

  • Mechanical damage 


Biotic disorders

  • Humans 

  • Large animals 

  • Soil organisms 

  • Insects 

  • Pathogens 

  • Examples of transmissible tree diseases 

  • Biosecurity and transmission of pathogens 

  • Epiphytes, parasites and vines 


Tree structural conditions 


Diagnosis: collecting samples

  • Sampling equipment 

  • Sampling hygiene and biosecurity 

  • Soil sampling 

  • Selecting sampling sites 

  • Soil sampling procedure 

  • Collecting plant samples 

  • Recording sample information 

  • Sending samples for analysis 

  • Laboratory analysis 


3: Tree establishment 

  • Selection of tree species 

  • Selection of tree stock for planting 

  • Tree stock selection process 

  • Tree planting 

  • Tree establishment 


4: Tree maintenance


Tree maintenance process 


Identifying maintenance requirements 

  • Selecting a treatment plan 

  • Developing a maintenance plan 


Performing tree maintenance 

  • Performing tree work 

  • Environmental impact and control measures 

  • Environmental management plan 

  • Waste/clean-up management plan 

  • Water quality protection 

  • Noise control 

  • Dust/debris management 

  • Biosecurity measures 

  • Clean On / Clean Off procedure: 


Tree cultural remediation 

  • Atmospheric and climatic remediation 

  • Soil remediation 

  • Remediation of compacted soil 

  • Fertilisation 

  • Complete fertiliser 

  • Irrigation 

  • Identifying the need for irrigation 

  • Planning and applying irrigation 

  • Improving soil organic content 

  • Mulch 

  • Selecting mulch 

  • Applying mulch 


Installing physical protections 

  • Physical barriers 

  • Arboreal animal protection 

  • Root barriers 


Chemical treatments 

  • Categories of chemical treatments 

  • Chemical treatments and Safety Data Sheets 

  • Environmental concerns 

  • Impact on non-target species 

  • Applying chemical treatments 

  • Hazards associated with chemical treatments 

  • Calculating chemical treatment applications 

  • Mixing chemicals 

  • Chemical spill clean-up procedures 

  • Chemical application techniques 

  • Soil injection 

  • Stem injection 

  • Foliar spray 

  • Implants 

  • Irrigation / drench 

  • Incorporation/fertilisation 


Inoculation 


Tree pruning 

  • Tree pruning treatments 

  • Asset clearance 

  • Reduction pruning 

  • Crown thinning 

  • Crown lifting 

  • Risk abatement pruning 

  • Deadwood removal 

  • Branch or stem end weight reduction 

  • Remedial pruning 

  • Retrenchment pruning 

  • Formative pruning 

  • Structural pruning 

  • Epiphyte, parasite and vine removal 

  • Pollarding 

  • Palm pruning 

  • Natural fracture pruning & coronet cuts 

  • Tree pruning permits and tree protection laws 

  • Tools and equipment for tree pruning 

  • Pruning cuts 

  • Branch reduction cuts 

  • Examples of incorrect branch reduction cuts 

  • Stem reduction cuts 

  • Branch removal cuts (living branches) 

  • Branch removal cuts (deadwood) 


Root pruning 

  • Root pruning considerations: 

  • Performing root pruning 

  • Tree health care before and after root pruning 


Completing tree works

  • Processing debris 

  • Waste disposal 

  • Recording works 

  • Completion of works 


The care of trees 

NZ Arboricultural Association​

1/23 Alma St, Buxton Sq, Nelson

PO Box 1193, Nelson 7040

04 472 6330

info@nzarb.org.nz

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