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Arboricultural Glossary

Here at Bytham Trees we enjoy the benefits of years' of experience and training in arboriculture having provided tree maintenance in the area for many years. However, we realise that the associated terms and phrases may be less familiar to most of you, so below you will find a glossary of terms.

Of course, if you can't find what you are looking for here then we would be only too pleased to assist you via telephone or email, so feel free to fire your questions over.


BS 3998: 2010

The industry standard produced by the British Standards Institute to promote professional working practices in the arboricultural industry. It was drawn up with consultation from the arboricultural industry.


Clear felling

The clearance of a tree by cutting it off at ground level in one piece, then dissecting it into manageable portions where there is sufficient space to allow the tree to fall without damaging other structures.


Crown Lifting

The removal of the lower branches of a tree to give greater vertical clearance from other structures such as buildings, street signs, public thoroughfares etc.


Crown Reduction

The managed reduction of the height and spread of the crown either for aesthetic reasons or to reduce the bio-mechanical stress, by shortening the branches it reduces the "sail area" to wind and shorter branches exert less leverage, often practised to retain trees that may otherwise succumb to structural defects.


Crown Thinning

The removal of branches from the inner part of the crown to either facilitate more penetration by wind/light, or remove branches that may become structurally compromised (crossing or rubbing branches).


Dead Wooding

The removal of dead wood from the crown for aesthetic reasons or to reduce the risk of injury/damage to persons or property from falling branches. It is quite usual for mature/veteran trees to have small sections of dead wood, it is part of their natural decline, with the tree continuing to thrive. Or the tree may have a hanging dead branch as a result of mechanical failure (e.g; by high wind).



A method of managing a tree for spacial or aesthetic reasons, it entails removing the branches and most of the major limbs to a pre-prescribed level, this is often repeated at regular intervals ( re-pollarding ) to control the spread of the crown so that it can be maintained in situ without out-growing its available space.


Sectional Dismantling

The piece by piece removal of a tree (branches, then limbs, then trunk) when there is insufficient space to clear fell.


Stump Grinding

Is achieved by mechanically chipping the stump left after felling to a pre-determined depth below ground to eradicate trip hazard or facilitate landscaping.


T P O 's and Conservation Areas

Trees within a conservation area (with a basal diameter of more than 150mm) are granted legal protection, as are the buildings, from damage either above or below ground. In other areas trees may be protected by a Tree Preservation Order. This legal safeguarding requires prior approval of the Local Planning Authority before any works can be carried out to the protected tree(s), S211.