Your Frequently Asked Questions

Are you a licensed, bonded and insured tree services contractor?



YES! Forest Tree Services is a licensed D49 Tree Service Contractor through the Contractors State License Board of California. Our license number is 987991 and can be found online HERE.

Our Contractor’s Bond is filed with American Contractors Indemnity Company and we are insured by Scottsdale Insurance Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Nationwide, one of the largest insurance and financial service providers in the United States, an A.M. Best Rating of A+XV (superior) and a Standard & Poor’s “A” rating.

Our multi-million dollar policy covers us AND you! We are accident-free to date but know they sometimes happen…if we make an error and your property is compromised, it is covered. Choose with confidence. Certificates of insurance are available upon your request.

What are your credentials? Are you a Certified Arborist?

Forest Kirk, founder of Forest Tree Services, is a California licensed C-61 / D-49 Tree Services contractor. Forest grew up in Cazadero climbing trees and with a name like his, a career in the profession was just a natural progression.  Forest spent several years as an apprentice under various tree service contractors in California and Washington and founded his family-owned and operated business, Forest Tree Services, just minutes after passing his licensing exam.

Forest is also an ISA Certified Arborist through the International Society of Arboriculture. Earning a credential is a voluntary activity that demonstrates Forest’s high level of dedication to his profession and community. He and other ISA Certified Arborists understand the importance of continued education and how it helps to make the world a better place, one tree at a time.

Forest Tree Services is also pursuing accreditation with TCIA, the Tree Care Industry Association and voice of tree care since 1938.



Can you provide a list of references for me to contact about your work?

Absolutely, we can provide excellent references! If you enjoy browsing on the internet, you can find reviews for us on Yelp, Google+ and Facebook.  If you prefer we email or send a hard copy of our praises to you, we can also do that. Just ask!

What do you do with all the debris?

We have several different options for disposing of your tree and shrub debris. We can haul it away, leave it behind or a combination of the two. If you have use for firewood or wood chips, we can plan to leave behind the waste for you to reuse. Otherwise, we’d be happy to haul it away for others to enjoy.

Many waste management companies provide free or inexpensive yard waste bin rentals. Ask us about our discount program that utilizes this low or no-cost rental.

Can you leave wood chips for my landscaping?

Yes, but please notify us in advance that you would like wood chips as it requires a special machine that we will need to coordinate in advance.

Will your equipment be in my way?

If the work on your property is planned over multiple days, you can expect a clear area to access your structures each evening before we leave. During the day, we may park vehicles and machinery around your property as required. This plan will be disclosed and approved by you prior to us commencing any of our work.

I’m worried about a tree falling onto my house, garage, barn, etc.

Forest Tree Services’ climber and crew follow the strictest safety standards in the industry. Protecting your structures, other trees and vegetation and ensuring the safety of everyone around us is paramount in everything we do.  We are highly skilled, employ all of the proper tools and techniques and never compromise quality or cut corners. We are proud to be accident-free!

Why hire a professional?

Proper tree care is an investment that can lead to substantial returns. Well-cared-for trees are attractive and can add considerable value to your property. Poorly maintained trees can be a significant liability. Pruning or removing trees, especially large trees, can be dangerous work. Tree work should be done only by those trained and equipped to work safely in trees.

Why should I prune my trees?

Objectives for pruning include:

  • Reducing the potential for tree or branch failure
  • Providing clearance
  • Reducing shade and wind resistance
  • Maintaining health
  • Influencing flower or fruit production
  • Improving a view
  • Improving aesthetics
Is it safe to prune mature trees?

Factors to consider when pruning mature trees:

  • Time of year
  • Species, size, growth habit and vitality
  • Maturity of the tree

Younger trees tolerate the removal of a higher percentage of living tissue more than mature trees. Large, mature trees should require little routine pruning usually limited to the removal of dead branches to reduce the severity of structural defects and maintain proper tree health.

Do you prune and/or remove palm trees?

Yes, we prune and, when necessary, remove palm trees. Palm pruning should be performed when fronds, flowers, fruit or loose petioles might create a dangerous situation. Although palms can shed naturally, this can be hazardous is settings when falling fronds could damage property or hurt someone.

What is the tallest tree you’ve ever climbed?

CAM00801A 150′ redwood in Occidental. We performed a crown raise and deadwooded her.

What’s the biggest tree you’ve ever fallen?

A 140′ fir in Cazadero. She was about 8′ in diameter and is still providing firewood for my buddy’s family.

When is the best time of year to care for my trees?

Most routine pruning and removal of weak, diseased, undesirable or dead limbs can be accomplished at any time with little negative effect on the tree’s overall health.

As a rule, growth is maximized if pruning is done just before the buds swell, in late winter or early spring. Pruning when trees are dormant can minimize the risk of pest problems associated with wound entry and allows trees to take advantage of the full growing season to close wounds.

Plant growth can be reduced if pruning takes place during or soon after the initial growth flush. Removal of many live branches at this time can stress the tree.

Trees that bloom on current season’s growth are best pruned in winter, prior to leaf emergence, or in the summer after bloom has occurred.

Trees that bloom on last season’s wood, such as many fruit trees, should be pruned just after bloom.

Will you help me plant new trees?

We’d love to! Just let us know ahead of time what you need and we’ll plan accordingly. We practice the best planting techniques to ensure your new additions grow up healthy and strong!