Africa Breathing

Tree Services
Tree Care

Trees are Majestic living, functioning and breathing organisms.


Trees. They provide shelter for animals, play a key role in eco-systems, form a major part in global bio-diversity, and provide man with an array of products. It is also a known fact that trees can increase or even decrease property value in the real estate industry. Large indigenous trees in a residential area show that the area is well established with good property values, whereas large alien trees will gradually decrease the property value.


Trees growing in a controlled environment need taking care of. A great amount of stress is put onto trees but because they cannot speak, we assume that everything is all right. To the trained eye these tree-ailments can be seen, identified and attended to. This is the point where tree-surgery comes into its own. Many people still dismiss this service as not important because “a tree is just a tree” but the more people we can make aware of the value of 'tree works' the better chance we stand of preserving our natural heritage.


Africa Breathing Tree Services is dedicated to the importance of “tree work” and would like to see more people become aware of the value of trees.


It is our duty to maintain our greatest gift of all; Nature!


Derek Fourie


Recent debates concerning alien tree species refers.


Too often people are quick to put pen to paper and bemoan the demise of yet another landmark tree or the eradication of alien plant species in and around our town. Trees (both alien and indigenous) – and especially old trees - are magnificent living organisms; however, they tend to be sidelined and left to their own devices and more attention is given to manicuring flowerbeds and lawns.


Trees form an integral part of the ambience of any landscaped or manicured garden and as such more attention must be given to their maintenance. I am a professional arborist (or tree surgeon, as is more commonly known), and have been operating in Hermanus for the past eight years. In our trade, we promote the importance of tree maintenance. Simple aeration (or thinning out) and coppussing will go a long way in maintaining a healthy tree and prevent the dreaded felling.


Even alien species like some magnificent Norfolk Island pines need maintenance to keep them healthy. Sadly, this important maintenance is often overlooked. In order to save a few rands, the first person able to fire up a chain-saw is called in to fell or disfigure the tree. Having said that, I am all for the eradication of alien species but urge that this be done systematically using a phase-out principle, ie replacing cleared alien areas with indigenous trees.


By no means am I advocating the eradication of, for example, the historical old trees in Stellenbosch or the Jacarandas in Johannesburg and Pretoria; on the contrary, these trees must be maintained to ensure their well being. The same applies to our gardens - no one wants to fell a well established tree (even alien) but more can be done lo ensure their future well-being.


Derek Fourie 

Both of these articles, written by professional arborist Derek Fourie (BsC. Hons. Forestry), have previously been published in the Hermanus Times.

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