Arboriculture Australia Annual Conference 18 – 21 May 2019

Trade Exhibition & Australian Tree Climbing Championship Alice Springs Convention Centre 18 – 21 May 2019

2019 will see us venture into the outback of Alice Springs with its stunning sunsets, unique flora and fauna and glorious mountain ranges.

Urban Presenter Highlights

Lyndal Plant – The Life and Death of the Australian Leafy Street


Dr. Lyndal Plant is an urban forester who has worked in local government policy and strategic planning for urban trees, including many years with Brisbane City Council. A Churchill Fellow, member of TREENET management committee and now a published researcher and consultant, Lyndal have helped advance urban forest evidence gathering techniques and make stronger business cases for investment in green infrastructure. Lyndal now focuses on policy development/review and cutting-edge urban forest initiatives. She sees the forest, not just the trees – helps plan and monitor outcomes, not just outputs and is committed to a greener, cooler neighborhoods for all.

Kelly Hertzog – Updating the Tree Valuation Method


Kelly is an Urban Forester at the City of Melbourne, a role which includes strategic work and delivery of research and programs. As a social scientist, Kelly’s focus is the interactions between people and nature, and creating thriving urban ecosystems. Kelly specialises in community and stakeholder engagement, working to develop and implement the City’s Urban Forest Strategy. Kelly leads Melbourne’s Citizen Forester Program and the Urban Forest Fund. Kelly also plays a key role in the city’s urban forest data analysis and monitoring key forest health metrics, such as canopy mapping.

In previous roles at the City of Melbourne and Melbourne Water, Kelly’s work has also focused on Water Sensitive Urban Design and green roofs, walls and facades.

Nigel Tapper – Building Cooler, Healthier Global Cities as Critical Adaptation to Climate Change


Dr. Nigel Tapper holds a Personal Chair in Environmental Science (as a climate science specialist) within the School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment at Monash University where he currently leads the Applied Climate Research Group. Nigel Co-Led Program B (Water Sensitive Urbanism) until 2017 and is a key researcher in the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities. Outside the University Nigel has contributed strongly to the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change where he is a Lead Author of Working Group II, Impacts, Mitigation and Adaptation. He serves in the World Meteorological Organisation as a member of the Terrestrial Observation Panel on Climate and associated task forces. He is President of the International Association of Urban Climate. Nigel has published seven books, 15 book chapters and more than 200 refereed research publications, and has supervised >45 Ph.D. students, in an academic and research career spanning 35 years. Nigel’s work has been cited >5,500 times and he has an h-index of 40.

He co-authored the classic text on Australasian climate – The Weather and Climate of Australia and New Zealand. Key research in recent years has been in the area of weather and climate impacts, including on fire, urban environments and human health-climate interactions. A strong climate change adaptation theme has emerged in his research, especially in relation to urban environments and human health. Nigel has a particularly strong track record in delivering industry-relevant research.

Peter Jobson – The Blooming Desert: The Flora of Arid Central Australia – Its Diversity And Potential Uses

Career Highlights

2013 – present Senior Botanist and Curator at the Northern Territory Herbarium, Alice Springs

2008 – 2012 Working for consultancies as an identifications botanist in Western Australia during the mining boom

2001 – 2010 Casual lecturer at University of NSW

2004 hD UTS: PhD looking at the taxonomy and biogeography of Dillwynia – one of the egg-and- bacon-pea genera.

1995 – 1996 Bio-prospector collecting species used to screen for natural drugs, Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne

1994 MSc: James Cook Univerity, Townsville – variation in Dendrobium canaliculatum or Tea Tree Orchid

1988 Bsc (Hons) LaTrobe University – ariation in south eastern Acrotriche (native heaths)

Denise Johnstone

The Urban Visual Vitality Index (UVVI) – A Visual Assessment Method of Crown Condition in Urban Trees.


Dr Denise Johnstone has been a lecturer in arboriculture and urban forestry for over 20 years, but began her career win arboriculture as a contract tree climber. She has competed in the Australian Tree Climbing Championships and was Vice-President of the Arboricultural Association of Australia for two years. She has presented frequently at ISA international and publishes most of her research work in urban forestry and arboricultural journals. Her research questions are driven by arboriculture industry needs such as; how can we keep trees healthy? And indirectly such as; how do trees work? How do trees interact with humans?

Greg Moore

Minimising the hazard and risks that may arise from the development of lignotuber us and epicormic shoots: lessons from a study of Eucalyptus obliqua L’Herit


Greg Moore, Senior Research Associate, University of Melbourne, Burnley, was Principal of Burnley (1988-2007) and Head of the School of Resource Management (2002-007). Interested in plant science and ecology, Greg specializes in arboriculture. He was inaugural president of ISAAC, and has been a member of the National Trust’s Register of Significant Trees since 1988 and chair since 1996. On the Board of Greening Australia (1988-2012), Trust For Nature (2009-2017) and Sustainable Gardening Australia, he has chaired TREENET since 2005. He has written two books, five book chapters and 180 scientific papers and articles. He was awarded an OAM for services to the environment, particularly arboriculture.

Janet Mc Donald

A root and branch approach to forest biosecurity: the importance of arborists as early detectors.


Janet McDonald has been working with the Department of Agriculture, Forest Health Surveillance (FHS) team since 1998 conducting pests and disease surveys in forestry plantations throughout Queensland. She was part of team of researchers who set up FHS systems in the South Pacific Islands and most recently in south east Asia. She is responsible for establishing FHS systems in the sandalwood plantations in the Ord River Irrigation Area near Kununurra WA. Janet has twenty years of experience conducting pest and disease surveys and collecting samples in the field.

She has recently been conducting workshops with the QAA and councils focusing on forest pests and diseases, nutritional disorders and forest biosecurity.

Melissa Mcmanus

The North Sydney Council Experience – Tracking canopy change over 20 years, the ups, the downs and taking a new approach


10 years in landscape maintenance, construction and nursery production in both government and private sectors. She then taught at TAFE before joining North Sydney Council where she has been for over 20 years.

At North Sydney, a small, affluent, waterfront LGA in the heart of Sydney, Melissa spent 5 years as Tree Preservation officer before moving into a strategic planning role where she has overseen the development of Council’s highly regarded Street Tree Strategy and Urban Forest Strategy.

Ian Leahy

Title 1: Vibrant Cities Lab

Title 2: Tree Equity: Career Pathways


Ian Leahy has overseen American Forests’ urban forestry program since 2014. Based in Washington, DC, he has developed a Community ReLeaf program that helps cities across the United States build capacity for managing and growing their urban forests through a comprehensive change model. This includes data analysis, planning, advocacy, innovative financing, and restoration projects.

Community ReLeaf has won multiple awards, most recently a Climate Leadership Award for Innovative Partnerships. Ian has also led initiatives to advance the urban forestry movement in general, including the Vibrant Cities Lab (vibrantcitieslab.com), Tree Equity: Career Pathways, and new tools to advance climate mitigation and public health.

Prior to American Forests, Ian served as the State Urban and Community Forestry Coordinator for the District of Columbia and managed his own landscape design and installation business. He studied natural resources management at Cornell University.

May Carter – Saving our cities, one tree at a time


May has academic qualifications in leisure sciences, social science and environmental management. She has worked as a lecturer and researcher with several universities and as a consultant for government agencies and not-for-profit community and environmental organisations. May’s research, publications, national and international presentations cover topics relating to planning, design and management of parks and urban green space; protected area management; outdoor recreation and tourism; health promotion; and community development through engagement in planning and decision making. May currently works in cross-agency policy and research for the Western Australian state government.

Ian Mcalister – Building a Tree Planting Framework for Urban Resilience


Ian McAlister, Manager Recreation and Open Space, Dubbo Regional Council Ian has worked in the local government sphere for the past 30 years and currently holds the position of Manager Recreation and Open Space at Dubbo Regional Council.

As a strong advocate for the need of a connected park network to promote human health and well-being Ian has consistently pushed the discussion on the need for long term planning for the integration of Green and Grey Infrastructure to achieve intergeneration benefits to the Dubbo community. This has included the acceptance of the Stockholm Tree Planting methodology which is providing a dramatic transformation in the planting of trees within the hierarchy of the urban road system.

Ian has qualifications in Amenity Horticulture, Parks Recreational and Heritage and Natural Resource Management and has been undertaking additional study through the University of Melbourne in the area of Green Infrastructure.








David Cashman

Title 1: Trees and development; bridging the gap between design and construction

Title 2: Managing large roots within the excavation envelope


Dave Cashman is an Associate Director and Principal Consultant with Barrell Tree Consultancy (BTC), one of the UK’s most successful Arboricultural Practices, working primarily in the planning and legal sectors (https://www.barrelltreecare.co.uk/). He is part of a team of 14 people, specialising in assessing trees on development sites and project managing their protection through to occupation.

Dave has worked with trees for 40 years, starting his career with the London Borough of Sutton, first as a climbing arborist and then as a tree officer. In 2003, after 15 years in local government, he joined BTC, bringing his wealth of public sector planning expertise into the professional consultancy arena. Dave is accomplished international speaker having delivered conference presentations and workshops in the UK, Sweden, USA, Australia, Singapore, and New Zealand.

Mark Hartley –  Accidental Tree Failures


Mark Hartley is a second-generation arborist whose career spans over three decades. Mark has studied widely in Australia and the United States. His reputation and expertise in tree transplanting have taken him to 7 countries in 3 different continents. His expertise with palms resulted in him providing consultancy services in the UAE to the Royal Family.

Mark has given evidence as an expert witness in the Local, District, Land and Environment, and Supreme courts of NSW and has served as a court appointed expert for the Land and Environment Court of NSW.

Tom Vassallo – Arboriculture Qualification Review


Tom has many years’ experience in vocational education and training human resources and retail management, including secondary school teaching, learning and development consulting, delivery and assessment of Certificate IV Training and Assessment, developing training and assessment resources and managing training package projects. Tom’s roles prior to joining Skills Impact included Training Package Project Manager with the Construction and Property Services Industry Skills Council, Training Programs Manager with the Master Builders Association of Victoria and Curriculum Maintenance Manager – Building Services for Victoria. He holds a Bachelor of Arts, Diploma in Education, Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, Diploma of Management and a Diploma of Training and Assessment.

Register Now: http://bit.ly/ArbAus2019

Utility Presenter Highlights

Stacie Grassano & Jeff Filip – A practical approach to risk driven Vegetation Management


Stacie Grassano – GM Technology and Operations, Intelfuse

Stacie is Co-Founder and General Manager Technology and Operations at Intelfuse and has fifteen years’ experience in the geospatial, LiDAR and tree care industry and is an ISA Certified Utility Arborist PD-1435AU. Stacie holds a Master of Science degree in Plant and Soil Science specialising in Entomology. She has worked in the Environmental, Research, IT and Electricity Utility Sectors and is a certified Project Management Professional with the PMI.

Stacie has served as Project Director for major IT and LiDAR development and delivery projects in North America and Asia Pacific, including major Remote Sensing Electricity Transmission and Distribution Projects. Stacie’s core focus is the development and implementation of innovative LiDAR processing technology that greatly advances analytics for vegetation and asset management programs.

Jeff Filip – GM Strategy Development, Intelfuse

Jeff joined the Australian Power Sector during the mid-80s when utilities were dealing with bushfires caused by vegetation in contract with lines. Jeff played a key role in implementing bushfire policy at a regional level and has held senior management, strategy and technology development roles in both the public and private sector. He heads up Risk Solution Strategy at Intelfuse and is involved in development of new service offerings around LiDAR automation and technology. Jeff holds an Associate Diploma in Electrical Engineering, Master’s Degree in Business Management and an MBA in Entrepreneurship.

Stephen Martin – Right of Way Management – Insights from the International Symposium, Denver


Stephen is actively involved in knowledge sharing, which is demonstrated through his involvement in various industry bodies, such as the Energy Network Association Vegetation Management Working Group.

Stephen Martin is currently Land Strategist for Powerlink Queensland, which includes setting policy, monitoring performance, liaising with stakeholders and identifying efficiencies during a period of significant industry change.

In 2018, Stephen realised a career goal and presented two papers at the International Right of Symposium in Denver, Colorado. Stephen will share the learnings and experience from the Symposium at the Arboriculture Australia Annual Conference.

James Urbanowsky

Presentation #1 Title: Reliability Based Vegetation Management Strategies in the US and Canada.

Presentation #2 Title: Future Directions on Vegetation Management Practises and Strategies in the US and Canada.


James has been working for NB Power for the past 18 years, starting as Distribution Vegetation Field Operations Manager, with a 25,000km distribution network.

James is currently Senior Engineer T&D Vegetation Asset Management, responsible for T-veg NERC compliance, T&D vegetation annual plans, integrating LiDAR into program planning, and new process development.

As well, James is on several industry working committees, including CEATI, NATF and the US-UAA, benchmarking utility vegetation programs, leveraging GIS for vegetation management, applying linear programming for optimization, and defining strategies for improved reliability-based vegetation management. James is a Professional Engineer, Professional Forester, former certified gas pipeline inspector and ROW Agent, current ISA Certified Arborist / Utility Specialist, and Past President of ISA Atlantic.

Randal Miller

Abstract 1: Reliability-based Vegetation Management

Abstract 2: An Overview of Utility

Arboriculture: The Utility Specialist Certification Guide


Randall H. Miller joined CNUC as the Director of Research, Development and Industry Intelligence in May 2017 and currently maintains and cultivates a knowledge of UVM practices, regulations, trends, budgets, utility assets, arboriculture, ecology, technology and other subject areas. Randall performs formal benchmark and attribute comparisons across regions, company types, and programs dedicated to UVM. Prior to joining CNUC, he worked at PacifiCorp for more than 23 years , including nearly six years as an area forester, 18 years as system forester, and retiring from the company as the director of vegetation management. As PacifiCorp’s VM director, Randall developed comprehensive specifications based on industry practices, and managed thousands of overhead distribution and transmission lines for the utility. He served on ACRT’s Board of Directors from 2009-2015.

Miller holds a bachelor of science degree in horticulture from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a master’s degree in urban forestry from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. He is an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist and an ISA Certified Utility Specialist (IL-0225 BU). He has been Chair of the TREE Fund Board of Trustees, President of the Utility Arborist Association, twice Chair of the Edison Electric Institute Vegetation Management Task Force, President of the Oregon Community Forest Council (now Oregon Community Trees), and editor of the ISA Rocky Mountain Chapter newsletter. He has served on the ISA Certification Test Committee and on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Arboriculture and Urban Forestry. Randall is recipient of the 2005 ISA RW Harris Author’s Citation and has the ISA Integrated Vegetation Management Best Management Practices and, with Geoff Kempter, the upcoming Utility Specialist Certification Study Guide among his credits. He speaks widely on arboriculture topics.

Randall H. Miller holds an MS in Urban Forestry from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. He is an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist® and Utility Specialist™ He has been director of research and development at CNUC since retiring as director of vegetation management after 23 years at PacifiCorp in May 2017. He writes and speaks widely on arboriculture topics and is co-author with Geoff Kemper of the revised utility specialist study guide.

Daniel Heyburn

Keeping Our People Safe – Drop Zones And Exclusion Zones


Passionate about both Arboriculture and Health and Safety, Daniel has 25 years of broad industry experience spanning Horticulture, Arboriculture, Workplace Health and Safety, Environment, Rehabilitation, Disaster Response, Training and Consulting practices. Supporting multiple states of Australia, Daniel joined ETS Vegetation Management in 2001 and has championed building ETS’s first training database, a combined training and audit database and an electronic integrated Safety Management System.

In his role of National Safety Environment Quality and Systems Manager, Daniel is responsible for seven state and divisional Safety Committees, driving HS&E initiatives across business, and is building a culture of safety and continuous improvement.

Shane Brunker, Sophie Davison & Scott Mckenzie

Understanding the past, present and future clearance requirements


Shane Brunker – Technical Director, NM Group

Shane oversees the development of new products and services with our R&D branch and leads on the implementation of new equipment and systems. Shane has been with NM Group for 7 years and previously managed our field operations and processing/engineering teams. His background is the geospatial and remote sensing sciences, having earlier worked on the spatial and land information side of government.


Sophie Davison – Product Manager, NM Group

Sophie is currently a product manager at NM Group, focusing on innovating their geospatial vegetation management solutions, and previously spent the best part of the last 8 years working in and researching forest environments. Sophie shares academic and industry experience in using LiDAR and other Remote Sensing technologies to model and visualise these complex natural systems, having spent time working at both academic institutions and in the geospatial industry.

Scott McKenzie (Vegetation Manager, Endeavour Energy)

Three decades of studying Australian native vegetation, Scott McKenzie has developed, managed, and taught a range of conservation/risk-based programs throughout Australia. Specialising in NSW environmental legislation and risk-based modelling, Scott has co- authored a range of documents including Endeavour Energy’s vegetation control manual, hazard tree identification course and has been a technical reviewer for the industry safety standards (NSW) including bushfire risk mitigation. In 2018 Scott collaborated with a team to develop a risk-based model assessing growth rates and hazard trees to optimise vegetation maintenance performance cycles using LiDAR technology.

Alexandra Lewis

Working with our stakeholders to deliver improvements and reduce our vegetation clearance requirements


Alexandra Lewis joined SA Power Networks in September 2013 within the Strategic Asset Management team which is responsible for the long-term and high-level management decisions relating to the electrical assets.

Since joining SA Power Networks she has been instrumental in the preparation of a long-term plan for vegetation management near powerlines, in close consultation with Local Government and key stakeholders, which aims to reduce the need for tree trimming over time and improve how we manage vegetation near powerlines.

Alex has a Masters in Environmental Planning and has worked for the past 20 years in a range of stakeholder engagement and environmental planning and assessment positions across state and local government and the private sector. Alex has extensive experience in stakeholder and community engagement.

Oxana Dankova – Global vegetation management practices – Pathway to 4.0


Oxana Dankova is a Partner and Managing Director in BCG’s Energy practice, based in Sydney.

Oxana is a core member of BCG’s global Network Transformation Services team and since 2006 has worked with multiple BCG Energy clients in Russia, Europe, North America and Middle East prior to transferring to Australia in 2015.

In Australia, she has been supporting several NEM DNSPs in end-to-end network operations improvement, process redesign and digitisation, advanced asset management capability build, and vegetation management.

Oxana holds an MA in Economics and a PhD from the Central Economics and Mathematics Institute of the Russian Academy of Science

Heath Frenwin – Six impacts of Distributed Energy on Utility Vegetation Management


Heath Frewin is Manager Strategy – Vegetation at Essential Energy, having recently joined the organisation in February 2019. He has been acquired by Essential Energy to provide strategic direction and leadership in the development, implementation and monitoring of strategies and risks relating to the vegetation clearance/corridor asset class.

Heath is a passionate advocate for true risk-based and asset management-structured approaches to utility vegetation management. Previous employment has included time as Head of Distribution with the leading national electricity and gas utility lobby, Energy Networks Australia (ENA), where he was an integral part of influencing the existing and future technical regulatory environment for utilities.

Review Of Arboriculture Qualifications And Units Of Competency

Critical information session and discussion forum to held at this year’s conference.

  • Project scope and drivers
  • Project phases, development and consultation processes
  • Changes to qualifications and units of competency
  • Validation Industry validation forum:
  • Introduction to validation – validator’s role
  • Validation of qualifications
  • Validations of units of competency and skill sets
  • Validation wrap up and next steps

AS4970:2009 Protection of trees on development sites review

AS4970 is considered a critical tool for our industry and is now 10 years old. Standards Australia have advised it must be reconfirmed, withdrawn, made obsolescent; or revised.

To take advantage of the largest gathering of arborists in Australia a facilitated discussion forum will be held to gather feedback for submission to ensure the Standard remains valid.

Your participation is important to ensure that the Standard is improved and retains its status as a key tool for our industry.

Further information at http://arboriculture.org.au/About-Us/Policies

UAAA Panel Sessions

  • Panel Session: Who’s engaging the customer, and where’s the value?

(Chair: Heath Frewin, Vegetation Strategy Manager, Essential Energy)

  • Panel Session: Working near power lines safely, 100% of the time

(Chair: Pete Halliwell, Commercial Manager, Essential Energy)

  • Panel Session: The value and challenges of implementing long term

Vegetation Management strategies (Chair: Matt Palmer, Vegetation Specialist, Energy Queensland)

  • Panel Session: Big data – what vegetation data do we really need?

(Chair: Kevin Hamblin, General Manager, Utility Contracts, TreeServe)

Register Now http://bit.ly/ArbAus2019

April 10, 2019 / by / in , ,
Husqvarna 572XP Chainsaw


The NEW Husqvarna 572 XP® chainsaw was designed to deliver outstanding productivity, durability and reliability, while at the same time staying true to Husqvarna’s heritage and provide high ergonomics and safety.

The improved cylinder design and unique heat barrier provides excellent cooling and ensures longer engine life, while a heavy-duty air filter optimizes filtration. With an outstanding power to weight ratio, its powerful engine and user centric design with world leading low vibrations levels add up to a saw that keeps on delivering – day in, day out – for many years to come.

At just 6.6kg with a powerful 4.3kW engine, the 572 XP® has a better power-to-weight ratio than any other Husqvarna saw with similar displacement, and 12% higher cutting capacity than previous equivalent models. Smart design and easy operation keep productivity high even with long guide bars, and AutoTune™, Air Injection™ and LowVib® mean it’s built to deliver all day long.

The New X-Cut® C85 saw chain with best in class performance, is the second chain variant to leave the new chain factory in Huskvarna, Sweden, and will be standard on the 572 XP®, thereby optimising the cutting experience. The C85 X-Cut® chain is a full chisel, 3/8” chain for professional use and is easy to spot due to the golden tie-strap that helps loggers keep track of the start/finish of their filing loop. Like the other X-Cut® chain SP33G, the chain is sharp out of the box, pre-stretched, highly durable, and improves cutting efficiency.

So the next time you pack your gear, pack a partner you can trust to deliver, no matter what: The all new Husqvarna 572 XP®.

Link: https://hgcdn82.azureedge.net/video/004d4144000048003135302d30333334

Available in store NOW at authorised Husqvarna Servicing Dealers, and online at HUSQVARNA.COM https://www.husqvarna.com/au/products/chainsaws/

September 7, 2018 / by / in ,
Husqvarna Spring Competition


Clean up this spring with Husqvarna’s 100 prizes in 100 days giveaway. For your chance to win 1 of 100 Husqvarna prizes, simply tell us in 25 words or less: which Husqvarna machine have you always wanted to own and why?

Enter every day for more chances to win!

With a total prize pool valued at $15,000, you won’t want to miss out!


What you could WIN!

Monthly grand prizes:

● AM315X Automower valued at $3,299!

● 565AT-20 Chainsaw valued at $1,499!

● A Battery Series Kit – Hedge Trimmer, Lawn Mower, Trimmer, 2 x Batteries and Quick Charger valued at $1,644!

Weekly Major Prizes:

● 236E Chainsaw

● 125BVX Blower

● PW235R Pressure Washer

● 122HD45 Hedge Trimmer

● FM Earmuffs

● 122C Trimmer

● 135R Brushcutter



Conditions apply, see husqvarna.com/au/win. Open to AU res. 18+. Ends: 11:59pm AEDST 9/12/18.

September 7, 2018 / by / in ,

Trees can tell us so much about life, yet many species are  gradually disappearing from our landscapes before we even know their full story. Take for example the humble Scribbly Gum.




Iconic Australian gums like Scribbly Gums, unfortunately labelled ‘widow makers’ for their propensity to drop large limbs, are often the first to be removed from development sites. With their smooth white/cream trunks and distinctive markings, Scribblies form a defining part of our Australian identity with the bush. Those strange zigzagging patterns often noticed on them were first illustrated in 1918 by author May Gibbs in her much loved classic Snugglepot and Cuddlepie. Great Australian poet Judith Wright wrote about the mysterious

“Scribbly Gums naturally grow in an open forest with an understorey of native grasses and wildflowers.”

scribbles underneath the splitting bark in her 1955 poem“Scribbly-Gum”. But it was only in recent years that the biology behind the tree’s complex scribbles was further unravelled. A group of retired scientists contributed to an in-depth CSIRO study of Scribbly Gum Moths (Ogmograptis species) (Horan et al. 2012). It was determined that Ogmograptis is linked to the Australian Tritymba genus belonging to the Bucculatricidae family, and eleven new species of the moth were found and described. The study demonstrates some of the difficulties involved in classifying insects with shared Gondwanan ancestry.

“I would like to see more arborists encouraging tree owners to manage trees long term instead of removing them at will.”

Only a small group of smooth-barked eucalypts (mostly in Queensland and New South Wales) attracts Scribbly Gum Moths including E. haemastoma, E. racemosa, E. rossii or/and E. sclerophylla. Several other eucalypt species not considered to be “Scribbly Gums” can also have scribbles on their upper branches eg Blackbutt (E. pilularis), Sydney Blue Gum (E. salignus) and Snow Gum (E. pauciflora).

orest with an understorey of native grasses and wildflowers. These forests would have been traditionally burnt every decade but modern fire management practices require more frequent burning of remnant bushland. Such controls threaten the longterm survival of the habitat and the species that have come to rely on them. More pressing than fire management is the ongoing removal of large and veteran trees from the ever increasing urban landscape. The few that do survive the onslaught of development or infilling will suffer from accumulated effects as many local government arborists can attest. Redland City Council arborist, Ken Folkes, believes the trend to fill blocks with the house envelope, leaving little room for yard and garden, has contributed to the loss of natural environments. He said people are adapting to living indoors for the most part and many now rely on public parks for their weekend “green fix”.

“My experience is that people have basically turned from being risk tolerant to risk averse. This perception and fear of big trees only exacerbates the demise of large trees surviving in urban areas. It is not uncommon for the new owner to deem a remaining tree to be dangerous and request its removal. These trees can be pruned and I would like to see more arborists encouraging tree owners to manage trees long term instead of removing them at will.

“It is the loss and fragmentation of veteran eucalypts like Scribblies that worries me the most. I would like to be able to save as many as possible on development sites and larger properties. Some of these trees can be well over 200 years old and extremely valuable in terms of habitat and species preservation.

“We have to remember, these trees have been here before the white man and have adapted to climatic changes and the microchanges to their environment caused by extensive logging in the past and alteration of natural overland water flow. The value of seed from veteran trees is priceless – once they’re gone, they’re gone.”

Ken is particularly passionate about protecting Scribbly Gums due to the presence of crucial hollow bearing limbs, which many arboreal creatures are so desperately in need of. “These trees are being trashed at a phenomenal rate and cannot be replaced simply by hanging wooden boxes. I am a strong advocate for education by way of assisting the public to better understand the importance of preserving giant remnant eucalypts.

One of the veteran trees Ken’s team managed to have retained is a 200 yearold eucalypt with extensive large diameter hollows – homes to cockatoo, galah, parakeet, goanna, possum, and many other arboreal critters that all rely on the shelter and subsequent food chain this tree provides. A sign at its base enlightens the public as to why the now dead tree is being preserved.


Horak, M., Day, M.F., Barlow, C., B, Edwards, E.D., Su, Y.N., and Cameron S.L. (2012). Systematics and biology of the iconic Australian scribbly gum moths Ogmograptis Meyrick (Lepidoptera: Bucculatricidae) and their unique insect–plant interaction Invertebrate Systematics Vol:26, 357-398. Horak, M. (2012) Unravelling the mystery of eucalypt scribbles https:// theconversation.com/unravelling-themystery-of-eucalypt-scribbles-11023, retrieved 12 November 2017.

Biology Behind The Scribbles

According to Dr Marianne Horak (2012), this is how it all happens: in late autumn, the tiny grey Scribbly Gum Moth lays its eggs on the surface of the eucalypt bark. Once hatched, the larvae bore through the undersurface of the egg into the bark and then make elaborate trails, first burrowing in long irregular loops and later in a more regular zigzag, which is doubled up after a narrow turning loop. When the cork cambium starts to produce cork to shed the outer bark, it produces scar tissue in response to the feeding of the caterpillar, filling the double part of the larval tunnel with highly nutritious, thin-walled cells. These replacement cells are ideal food for the caterpillar, which moults into the final larval stage with legs, turns around and eats its way back along the way it has come. It then grows rapidly to maturity, bores its way out of the trunk, drops to the ground and spins a flat, ribbed silken cocoon on a hidden spot attached to a stone or fallen bark. By late summer or autumn, pupation has taken place and the moth leaves to begin another life cycle. Not long after, the bark cracks off, exposing the iconic scribbles beneath. Adult moths are rarely seen, despite the evidence left behind.  AA


February 12, 2018 / by / in ,

Arborists are faced with many challenges in their everyday work. Wild storms are a part of it. This month Guy Meilleur takes us to Puerto Rico to have a look into tropical tree care and landscape restoration in the aftermath of hurricanes Irma and Maria.




September 5, 2017: Hurricane Irma, packing winds of 185 miles an hour, blasted the peaceful island of Puerto Rico. The stunned staff at the Dona Ines Arboretum at the Luis Munoz Marin Foundation in San Juan pulled the fallen trees back up and staked them. With their garden stabilised, the arborists boarded a boat and delivered 2,000kg of supplies to colleagues 75 miles away in the Virgin Islands. Then they heard the weather forecast, and steamed back home in a hurry. September 20, 2017: Hurricane Maria, a Category 4 storm packing sustained winds of 155 miles an hour, hit the southeastern tip of Puerto Rico. Over the next day and a half, it crawled across the island. This slow storm tore up the repairs from Irma’s damage, and destroyed a whole lot more. These tag-teaming sisters devastated the green infrastructure in Puerto Rico as well as the gray. This article will describe some of the challenges and opportunities faced by Tropical Tree Experts LLC during three weeks of restoration work at the prime collection of native and regionally adapted trees in Puerto Rico. The governing board at the Arboretum did not want a total clean-up of all damaged material. Instead we were asked to retain as much of the natural ecology as possible, and restore as much tree value as we could. To meet this objective, we had to get beyond the shock and awe of the devastation. Based on our experience after other storms, we followed an asset-based systematic process for triage, salvage, repair, and restoration of the landscape. From roots to trunks to branches and back to roots, this process involved arboriculture not often practiced in formal gardens.

Salvaging Wood 

Salvaging some of the beautiful wood in the totally uprooted trees for timber came first. Some of the upturned stumps were integrated into the landscape, and used for supporting newly planted trees. Partially uprooted trees were pruned and propped, where practical. If there was still life in the roots and trunk, the tree was reduced back to healthy tissue. Reducing back to ground level and managing the sprouts (coppicing) was a last resort.

In all cases, we tried to remove competing growth out to the dripline, and apply up to 6” of the coarse woody debris that covered this once-pristine public garden. Sections of fallen trunks and branches were used to control erosion and rebuild the soil resource. They were placed in contact with the ground where possible, to speed nutrient recycling in the humid tropical climate.

“From roots to trunks to branches and back to roots, this process involved arboriculture not often practiced in formal gardens.

The branches of some partially uprooted trees were also pressed to the earth, but with a very different objective. One large tree near a sidewalk was blown over, but most of its roots remained intact. It had branches laying on the other side, so we tried “layering” – forcing the branches to grow new roots. Typically, the bark is scraped off first, so the pluripotent “stem cells” in the cambium are provided with the right conditions to sprout roots. Then the areas were covered with more of the copious coarse woody debris as mulch. This root growth will sustain an archway that provides visitors welcome shade, and a compelling feature to enjoy in the years to come.

Bending Branches

Bending branches is more successful with Ficus sp. than other species. Too much torque constricts circulation. Some bending can be tolerated, and branches can be pinned to the ground. Landscape staples work for smaller branches, while rocks were used to stabilise bigger limbs. Extended branches were pruned to allow pedestrian clearance and lessen sway, and further stabilised with props cut from fallen branches. Creating archways out of fallen trees was one way to add valuable features to the landscape, but other strategies were employed to conserve tree value.

After the timber salvage, 1”-2” diameter branches with suitable forks were cut into lengths for props. Branches that size with special character were fashioned into walking sticks. Other ideas for salvaging assets from debris are still being developed. 4”-6” diameter limbs with attractive colour and grain patterns were sliced 1” thick, for sale as coasters to hold drinks like “mojito”, the popular rum-limemint concoction. Conservation activities in Puerto Rico are funded by a tax on rum, another worthy reason to imbibe!


Props “are rigid structures installed between the ground and a branch or trunk to provide support from below.” We used props to maintain clearance for pedestrians, and reduce the potential for further tree failure. Propping is much more common in Asia than in “western” cultures – which includes Australia! It may be an aesthetic mindset, to want to see a tree stand on its own. When propping is not considered, it’s a missed opportunity to create something special. As AS4373 is revised (it has been over ten years after all), a section on support and propping should be included.

Standing Trees

Standing trees sustained branch losses ranging from major to extreme. Triage on the tree crowns was possible by focusing not on what remained, but on what was gone. Artificial (and unsupported) guidelines like “Consider removal if 50 per cent or more of the branches are broken”, or “Avoid heading cuts” would have made our work impossible. Instead, we applied lessons learned after ice storms, and from Dr. Alex Shigo: “…proper crown reduction is done at nodes… a node (has) buds”.

Avoiding Decay

Avoiding decay is another good reason for nodal pruning. Large wounds on trunks are motorways for decay-causing fungi and bacteria racing into the heart of the tree. Many nodes contain dormant buds that have waited in the cambium as the tree grew. Endocormic growth from these buds is well nourished, and unlike epicormic growth, well anchored. Nodes are indicated by wrinkles and bulges. Wrinkles on some branches resemble collars, indicating branch protection zones. Cuts just beyond bulges left smaller wounds, and retained more symmetry and structure. We lightly reduced some of the load from the undamaged limbs, so they experienced less stress and strain.


Sprouting is a natural response when storms upset the balance between roots and canopy. The more the tree loses, the greater the imbalance and the greater the sprouting. No follow up pruning is needed until the sprouting slows. Over time, the dominant sprouts can be trained to become permanent branches, by removing branch sections that have failed to sprout well, or with rapidly advancing decay, codominants with included bark, and sprouts that are not forming a buttress, or are declining or dead. Branches reduced to buds after Hurricane Fran in 1996 were loudly criticised as “stubs”, but they now have  not one, but two or three strongly attached branch ends to carry on. What  at first looked ugly grew into attractive, safe, and symmetrical portions of valuable tree canopy. It’s high time for  the anti-topping passion to chill, so  we can Give Trees a Chance.

Interpreting Strategies

Interpreting these strategies with  signage, video, and other media is underway, so visitors can appreciate  not only the devastation from nature,  but the renewal that happens when  people work with nature. We are still learning about  arboricultural treatments that repair landscapes, and prepare them for the next, inevitable storm.



Please write to The Australian Arbor Age and/or contact the Tropical Tree Experts Facebook page with feedbacks and any suggestions that you might have.


February 12, 2018 / by / in ,

Bandit’s ZT1844 stump grinder has been selling up a storm in recent months, and one Arborist who chose Bandit’s green machine is Travis Garden from the north eastern suburbs of Melbourne.


Trav’s Trees has over a decade of experience in the tree game and has owned a few different grinders over the years. We wanted to know why he chose the Bandit machine – what’s good about it and what he would like to see improved?

Tell us about your  Bandit ZT1844 grinder.

It’s really narrow at only 29” (73cm) wide and gets through a standard doorway. It’s fitted with the 38hp Kohler fuel injected engine and is mounted on wide tracks for great traction.

How has the Bandit improved your business? 

It’s allowed us to get larger stumps done without having to get in a contractor. This has saved us serious money and we finish the trees and stumps all at once, so we get paid much faster.

What is the best features of the ZT1844?

The boys can get it in just about anywhere. We also love the Greenteeth on the cutter wheel. We can spin them around three times before they need sharpening and with only eight teeth they are quick and easy to change.

How do you find the machine’s usability and maneuverability?

Awesome. It has a single joystick control which took us about ten minutes to master and now we love it. The track drive is great. Lots of power. Can’t fault it.

And on the stump; does it cut OK?

Better than OK. It destroys stumps much better than a compact machine ever should. Pine, palm, dead hardwoods, all no worries.

What about maintenance?

I really like the belt drive set up. All the tensioning is done with two big idler pulleys; no moving engines and jack shafts like on other machines. The cutter wheel bearings are massive and should last ages.

What made you pick  Bandit Tree Equipment?

I run Bandit chippers and know that they look after their customers really well. Once I had a demo of the grinder I knew it was for me. Great machine with top after sales support.




Anything you would like  to see changed?         

Yes! Can I have another one? 🙂


For more information visit Trav’s  Trees on www.travstrees.com.au or www.banditchippers.com.au

February 7, 2018 / by / in ,

After-sales support the key to business success. We spoke to Cameron Thompson from Stump Pro Stump Grinding about his experience as a customer.

Stump Pro Stump Grinding in Brisbane is able to handle jobs others can’t, mainly because of the equipment they own. Here, we spoke to owner, Cameron Thompson, about what it was like starting his own business, the importance of purchasing premium equipment, and the impact after-sales support has on his own business.

Starting and running your own business is stressful and difficult at the best of times. Founder of Stump Pro, Cameron Thompson, took the leap into small business in 2007 when he ventured into the stump grinding market. With limited startup capital and being the single father of three, Mr Thompson was taking a risk to start a business. The risk was a calculated one, said Mr Thompson, who already had experience in the industry, and had identified a need in the market.

“I was working as a sales rep for a Woodchippers company at the time and had a lot of contacts in the industry. I saw a gap in the market for people to do large stump grinding, so I purchased my first stump grinder ten years ago and began building the business,” said Mr Thompson.

“I could tell right away that Vermeer were genuine and actually cared about my business needs.”

Having the right equipment and support In 2016 Mr Thompson purchased his first Vermeer product – the SC552 stump grinder. He was so impressed he purchased a SC40TX stump grinder a month later and has since bought three more Vermeer products. Mr Thompson said he has known Craig Baillie from Vermeer for more than fifteen years and appreciates the way he, his team, and the rest of the company, does business.

“I could tell right away that Vermeer were genuine and actually cared about my business needs. They were there to help, and showed an interest in what we could do and where I wanted to take Stump Pro.

The service he received after his first purchase from Vermeer made it easy for Mr Thompson to continue buying equipment from them. He said knowing the level of after-sales support available makes a big difference for small businesses. “If I had a problem or question, I could contact the local rep, Daniel Krafft, or the Vermeer workshop, and someone came straight out to fix it. Nothing was ever  a hassle. “Daniel did training with us on our first day with the product, but his customer service went beyond that. We weren’t forgotten. He called to follow up and made sure everything was okay. “That’s why I bought more of their equipment; purely because I feel confident that the backup is there,” said Mr Thompson.

Taking on bigger projects Stump Pro has made a name for itself in the industry for its ability to handle big jobs in a short amount of time. They regularly act as backup for other tree contractors when their equipment breaks, or to assist when they don’t have the right equipment for stump grinding at their job. Mr Thompson said it’s the big equipment, particularly the Vermeer SC552 stump grinder, that has made a difference to his business.

“We grind a huge amount of big stumps that other machines can’t handle, in a really short amount of time. Our Vermeer products mean we can attend a job with a few pieces of equipment and a few workers, and grind stumps that may otherwise need to be removed with a crane. That saves both time and money for our clients,” said Mr Thompson.


Visit www.vermeer.com.au or call  1300 VERMEER for more information.

February 7, 2018 / by / in ,

Good protective equipment must withstand demanding conditions and provide the required protection. That’s why we use nothing but high-quality materials. Each job comes with different requirements. Our range of protective clothing takes into consideration every type of work. In fact our extensive range of safety clothing, offering the latest innovations in design and materials, will provide you with the level of protection and comfort you need to get the job done.


Our advanced protective material comprises fewer layers. This makes it lighter, without compromising protection levels. The material and layering design consists of long fibres that can become tangled in the chain.


The complete knee, including the saw protection fabric, has been pre-bent to ensure a perfect fit in all working positions.


The knee has a water-resistant inner lining and an outer layer made of water-repellent fabric, keeping water and moisture from penetrating the saw protection layers. This means you can work comfortably in wet conditions for or a longer time.

For more information, and to view the complete range visit us online @ www.husqvarna.com.au  or instore at your local authorised Husqvarna Servicing Dealer.

For more information, please contact:
Husqvarna Marketing Department (02) 4352 7400
[email protected]


Husqvarna Group

The Husqvarna Group is the world’s largest producer of outdoor power products including chainsaws, trimmers, lawn mowers and garden tractors. The Group is also the European leader in consumer watering products and one of the world leaders in cutting equipment and diamond tools for the construction and stone industries. The product offering includes products for both consumers and professional users. The Group’s products are sold via dealers and retailers in more than 100 countries.

January 18, 2018 / by / in ,
Genuine Husqvarna Accessories – Technical Arborist Helmet

Don’t let bad equipment get in your way. Husqvarna’s Parts and Accessories allow you to keep on going no matter what the situation, with maximum effect and results beyond your expectation. By choosing original parts from our complete and extensive product range you are guaranteed the same high quality throughout the lifespan of each and every product

The Husqvarna Technical Arborist Helmet is a light weight and ventilated ABS helmet for professional arborist, approved for working at heights. Unique harness adjustment with two wheels that centres the head in the helmet for the best balance and stability on the head. Only for work at height – not approved for forestry work on the ground. Complete with Husqvarna premium hearing protection and UltraVision visor – which offers 20% light reduction giving a clearer view.

For full product details, visit: http://www.husqvarna.com/au/parts-accessories/helmets/aborist-helmet-kit/578092301/

January 18, 2018 / by / in ,
TreeWiseMen: Morbark Strong!

Tree care company grows business with hard work and hard-working equipment

Drew Bedingfield, a former firefighter, started doing tree care work part-time in 2012. Now, his business, TreeWiseMen Tree Service, in Bluffton, S.C., runs three high-production crews of at least four tree care workers each.

“I just started out with a small truck and a lot of hard work,” says Bedingfield, “and we just arrived here today.”

“Here” is a busy, local tree service company doing residential and commercial removals, pruning, stump grinding, and plant health care. Bedingfield feels the company’s size is a benefit for customers, “It’s large enough to serve any of your demands, but small enough to where, if there is a problem or issue, it gets addressed quickly and efficiently.”

TreeWiseMen currently has 12 people in production, two office staff members, one full-time arborist and one full-time sales representative. Bedingfield credits his growth to hard work, good people and hard-working equipment, including his fleet of Morbark® machines. His company has three Morbark chippers — two Beever™ M18Rs and a Beever M14R (an older model Morbark has replaced with the M15RX) that typically run every day, according to Bedingfield — as well as an MXD86 track stump grinder and a Boxer® 320 mini-skid steer, plus a handful of other support equipment: “everything that you’d need to get a big job done quickly,” says Bedingfield.

“Morbark’s been a household name for a long time,” adds Bedingfield. “They’ve got a great reputation. I was already considering them before I realized there’s a dealer in Savannah (Georgia), which is very close to us — about 30 minutes away. Once I met Josh, the sales rep for Morbark, he really sealed the deal for me.”


Enter Savannah Equipment Specialists

Savannah Equipment Specialists also has been in business since 2012, and you could say Savannah Equipment and TreeWiseMen grew together.

Savannah Equipment carries the full line of Morbark chippers, stump grinders and Boxer equipment, as well as parts and arborist supplies. “Anything (tree care workers) need to get a tree on the ground and get her chipped up, that is what we strive to provide,” says Josh Walters of Savannah Equipment Specialists.

Savannah Equipment takes a consultative approach to equipment sales, which has helped the company grow and to become a Morbark gold-tier dealer in 2016.

“I like to go out and be more of a consultant than a salesperson,” says Walters, “put ourselves in (tree care service owners’) business to where they want to do business with us. We depend on each other for business and, you know, it’s a good, natural cycle to be in there. If we take care of all of their needs on a daily basis, they can grow, which means they buy more from us; we all grow together.”

That consultative approach was part of why Bedingfield works with Walters.

“So I met Josh — he actually called on me when I was first getting into the tree care industry,” says Bedingfield. “I purchased an M14R from him. He was very knowledgeable, made me feel very comfortable about the purchase. And after putting 2,000 hours on the equipment, Morbark continues to sell itself.”

“Drew is a good story,” says Walters. “Drew started out doing tree work part-time. Everyone’s got to start somewhere, and he started out right. He grew his business, and we helped him from the beginning, from when he first just needed some arborist supplies.”

“We helped him get in his first chipper, and he’s taken it from there,” continues Walters. “He’s a very aggressive, young guy, and he’s done very well. He’s put good people in place. We’re going to keep providing the solutions he needs every day, and we’ll keep growing together.”


Hard-working equipment

A good relationship with a local equipment dealer, who provides high-quality advice, equipment, parts and service, is only part of the equation. If the equipment wasn’t top-notch, the business would not be successful.

Bedingfield says he does significant market research before purchasing equipment, and that research drove him to Morbark equipment.

“Morbark just has a really great resale value, and they have great reviews, and it’s easy to see why,” he says. “They last a long time. And it’s not just the equipment, it’s also the dealer service that stands behind the equipment.”

“In this area, we process sweet gum, pine, royal oak, any red oak species, a handful of live oaks here and there, hickory trees,” Bedingfield continues. “The challenges that we see chipping large wood is the feed rollers definitely take a beating. We feed a lot of our chippers with a machine, so the chippers withstand a lot of abuse, whether it’s long pine limbs or very twisted hickory tops or whatever else may be. The infeed system is very strong.”

Bedingfield heaps similar praise on his new MXD86 stump grinder from Morbark as well: “I recently took possession of a new D86 track stump grinder, and that thing is absolutely amazing. Previously I had a G42 — great bang for the buck, but for commercial, large-scale stump removals, the D86 is just better suited. Every day we do stump grinding, and we might grind anywhere from 15 to 20 stumps a day, some of them being huge blowovers with an exposed root system. That machine just eats right through it!”

TreeWiseMen also added a Boxer 320 mini-skid steer to their equipment fleet, and Bedingfield appreciates its ease of use and labor savings.

“I took the Boxer 320 into consideration and ultimately purchased that unit because it did so well in back yards,” Bedingfield says. “It’s very turf-friendly. It’s very user-friendly. It was priced right, and it’s a great addition to the large chippers that we use. The 320 mini-skid that we have has saved us a ton on labor, especially because it helps to evacuate wood and limbs and debris from back yards quickly and efficiently.”

Bedingfield says Morbark will play a large role in TreeWiseMen’s future growth: “In the future, I look for additional Morbark equipment, expanding crews, and expanding our capacity to serve our current clientele and also our future clients.”


For more information on how Morbark equipment can help your business, contact your local authorized Morbark dealer:


NSW/VIC: Global Machinery Sales Pty Ltd, 1300 072 926, globalmachinerysales.com.au

QLD: Allclass Construction Equipment, 1300 255 252, allclass.com.au

WA: Westco Equipment Pty Ltd, +61 (8) 9258 9333, westcoequipment.com.au

NZ: Stevens Products Ltd, +64 (9) 275 0443, stevensproducts.co.nz

June 21, 2017 / by / in ,