Difference Between a Gardener & an Arborist

What is the difference between a gardener and an arborist? Learn the different services you can get from gardeners, arborists and tree surgeons before starting.

You might not know who to call if you need jobs completed in your domestic garden or commercial outdoor space. Do you get in touch with a professional gardener or do you need a different type of professional? We help you answer this question by looking at the jobs undertaken by professional gardeners, arborists and tree surgeons below.  

What makes someone a professional gardener?

There is no formal certification that allows you to become a professional gardener in the UK. However, there are many courses and university degrees that can set someone up for a successful gardener career, ranging from short courses to a university degree in horticulture. 

With the right knowledge and practical skills, a professional gardener is able to improve a commercial or domestic landscape to the client’s needs. They can also help the client choose and plant the most suitable plants and trees for their preferences and available space.

What is an arborist?

An arborist is someone who has the same knowledge and skills as a professional gardener, but they also have specialist knowledge in tree diseases and maintaining tree health. Their job may require the felling of trees, which also means having extensive knowledge and qualifications in the use of other power tools, safety equipment and relevant safety processes. 

A reputable professional gardener won’t usually take on jobs that should only be undertaken by an arborist. But some gardeners might try to complete jobs outside of their knowledge set, which can result in unsafe processes and poor end results.  

Is an arborist and tree surgeon the same?

Some people use the terms arborist and tree surgeon interchangeably. Although their jobs are quite the same, there can sometimes be differences. 

Tree surgeons are likely to have an even greater technical knowledge of tree health and tree disease prevention. You may want to think of an arborist as your tree General Practitioner, whereas a tree surgeon is an even greater specialist. 

Service providers may choose to market themselves as arborists or tree surgeons. So it’s important to look past the title they give themselves and understand what qualifications they have to undertake specific tasks. Don’t be afraid to pose questions to the companies you’re thinking of using, especially to clarify what they’re really qualified to carry out. 

Here at NJ Apps, all of our tree surgeons are NPTC-approved, meaning our team is 100% qualified for all the garden maintenance and tree surgery services offered.

Should I use a gardener or an arborist?

If you require a service that doesn’t require the professional to:

  1. Diagnose tree health
  2. Provide tree care and disease prevention
  3. Fell trees

you could call your local professional gardener. However, arborists and tree surgeons will usually offer services that a gardener provides as well. For example, they could offer landscaping services, tree stump removal, hedge maintenance and tree planting advice. 

If you need the three services listed above, you will need to search for arborists and tree surgeons. If a professional gardener states that can provide these services, you should ask what qualifies them to do the job. 

It may be the case that you need some services that could be carried out to a high standard by a gardener, but you also need one or two services that should only be provided by a tree surgeon. It can be more financially economical and convenient to get everything from one company, which means using the tree surgeon for all tasks. 

How much does it cost to hire a tree surgeon?

The cost of hiring a tree surgeon will significantly differ based on the job at hand and whether you need one or a team of tree surgeons at once. According to research carried out by Checkatrade, a single tree surgeon will cost between £250 and £400 per day. If you require a team of three people or more, a discounted rate could be offered. 

Free tree surgeon quote!

NJ Apps offers a free quote with no obligations to use our service. We typically need to diagnose issues and understand the scope of the task required, so we will come out to your site for a first-hand look. We’ll then provide you with a no-obligation-free quote. 

Get in touch with our team today if you would like a free quote!

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