When a troublesome queen palm kept getting in the way of a utility line on a quiet residential street in Stockton, a three-man crew from Trees Inc was sent in to take the tree down.
“We’ve been having problems with this tree for a while. It’s right there under the power lines every year,” said tree trimmer Rosario Garcia. “If we cut it back down to the bases, it’s just going to keep sprouting up again. It will be a continuous problem, and we’ll be back out here, probably twice a year, to trim it back down. We can’t directionally trim these queen palms out of the way; they just grow straight up. So we have to completely remove it.”
The tree was located in the back yard of a private residence, which added some additional challenges to the job. The homeowners had installed fencing and fancy stamped concrete around the palm on all sides, so the crew needed to take extra care not to damage anything on the property. Additionally, the proximity of the palm to the power lines required the crew to meticulously navigate the bucket between the primary and secondary.
After completing the initial job briefing paperwork and gassing up their tools, the crew went to work. From his place in the bucket, Garcia carefully removed each branch of the palm piece by piece using a chainsaw. Fellow crew members Muhammad Arif and Manuel Macias worked on the ground to pile the palm fronds around the tree, creating a soft bed for the trunk to land on.
They then tied a rope around the trunk in order to ensure it came down safety. Once the tree had been removed, Manuel Macias chopped it up into manageable pieces, and the crew worked together haul the debris off the property. The branches and palm fronds went straight into the chipper, while the larger pieces from the tree trunk were loaded into the truck to be dropped off at a waste site later in the day.
The crew made short of the job. In less than 90 minutes, they had finished up and completely cleared out, and it was as if the crew — and the tree — were never there.
Photos by John Storey