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Ayrshire, United Kingdom Gb

I have had a tree surgeon come to take a few of the lower branches of my variegated poplar. We met and discussed exactly what I wanted which was specifically that my intention was to have tree swing within the next couple of years, so the branches removed were not to interfere in any way with that plan. The tree was a gift in 1993, and I have waited for twenty years, loving my beautiful tree and looking forward to my tree swing and having grandchildren to swing on it. The original position of the tree in the garden, was selected with that in mind. I am now only four weeks from retiral, having tendered my resignation yesterday. And how I was looking forward to more time in my garden and eyeing up my poplar's thickening branches.
I arrived home today, to discover the qualified tree surgeon had removed all of the lower branches, right up to the flimsy twig-like branches halfway up the trunk. It will take more years than I have left in my life for these twigs to mature to any reasonable thickness, and even then, they are far higher than I would have wanted for a tree swing.
I am heart-broken and that is no exaggeration.
My question is twofold. Is there anything I could reasonably expect the tree surgeon to do eg perhaps something to accelerate and promote chunky branches over the next few years, or is there any other recompense that would in any way soften the hurt of losing my dream. Do tree surgeons have unions?
To add insult to injury, when I expressed my dismay I was met with the rejoiner that he couldn't put the branches back on. My point exactly...and I can't get my twenty years and my dream back.



Hybrid Poplar trees are among the fastest growing trees on the planet. Some poplar trees grow over 8 feet per year, so depending on your type may be all is not lost?
Having had 30 in my garden before they were removed, I am surprised that a Poplar would suit a swing so what type do you have?

I do feel for you but sadly unless you have something in writing showing which branches to cut its unlikely you will get anywhere pursuing this.

I think the lesson to be learned - is to be there when they do the work so that you get what you asked for. I would never leave a tree surgeon alone in my garden.

24 Aug, 2012


I'm not surprised your upset - why don't these idiots listen to us, after all we are paying for it. I don't think I can advise you other than to refuse to pay the bill and don't recommend him to anyone. Sorry.

24 Aug, 2012


I can certainly understand how upset you are and his reply that he can't put the branches back on shows him to be an ignorant rude pig.

Sadly with nothing in writing there's very little you can do and refusing to pay the bill might lead him to take you to court.

24 Aug, 2012


My neighbour asked her gardener to bring down the height of her ornamental cherry tree in her garden, She returned home to find he had reduced the height to 6". But it was a misunderstanding and no hard feelings over the matter, but I can see how strict instructions not adhered to can be very upsetting. I do hope your tree is of a variety that being cut drastically will encourage quick growing.

25 Aug, 2012


Thanks everyone for your comments!

14 Sep, 2012


Dear Gardeners, who took the time to comfort me when my dream of a tree swing after twenty years of waiting, was dashed.
I so appreciated your empathy! I must apologise for taking so long to respond to you, but the truth is I had no idea how I managed to contact you! I was sooo desperated to speak to someone who might understand how I was feeling when the deed was done, that I just opened the laptop...and as complete technophobe, just started putting in words and following prompts, till low and behold, there was a space for my distress to be trumpeted to the world!!
Then I got your wonderful replies, and it's only now, with the help of an IT savy friend, that I'm now in a position to thank you myself...which I do, most warmly.
So, in some respects, my story has a happy ending, in that I now know how to contact this great resource, and also in that I have now decided to purchase a circular tree seat..something I have always wanted. Alas, no grandchildren swinging on my old tree, but right now I'm happy just to look forward to the reality of a good book, and a glass of wine in the shade of the tree, on my new tree seat.
Thank you all for your kind and funny replies. They kept me sane in the immediate aftermath! The tree surgeon himself suggested I didn't have to pay I didn't!!! Some justice in that, I guess.
Happy gardening.

16 Sep, 2012


I am glad you feel better about it and at least the TS was honest and declined payment. A round seat will be fun as you can move round with the sun etc. I do hope you join in this site and enjoy the site. Its addictive lol.

16 Sep, 2012


Well done you. I hope you enjoy many a glass of wine and a good book on your new seat - Cheers.

17 Sep, 2012

How do I say thanks?

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