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Green Arbor Lawn Maintenance Newsletter - 2023/12/01

Updated: Dec 3, 2023

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Company Updates: JSA (Jobsite Safety Analysis)

At Green Arbor Landscape Contractors, Inc., our commitment to safety is deeply ingrained in our daily operations, particularly through our Job Site Safety Analysis (JSA) process; or Job Hazzard Analysis (JHA). These terms are often used interchangeably, we just happen to use the terms JSA's. This crucial practice, though perhaps unfamiliar to many of our clients, is the backbone of our safety protocol.

Every morning, before the day's work commences, our team conducts their JSA’s. This involves a careful examination of potential hazards, especially during critical tasks like setting up cranes and rigging. Identifying these risks before they manifest allows us to proactively address them, significantly minimizing the chance of accidents.

Our commitment to safety doesn't stop at lawn maintenance. We continuously refine our JSA process throughout the year, ensuring it remains efficient and effective. This high level of safety diligence, derived from best practices in commercial construction, is not commonly seen in our industry and might not be something our clients are directly aware of. However, it's an integral part of how we operate, underpinning the reliability and responsibility that we bring to every project.

Through this meticulous approach to safety, we not only protect our team but also provide peace of mind to our clients, ensuring the highest standards of service without them needing to worry about the complexities of our safety processes.

Hardscape retaining wall with steps and tier flower planters

Seasonal Tips: Checking Retaining Walls and Hardscapes

As winter sets in across the Chicagoland area, it's vital for property managers to closely inspect their hardscape elements, such as patios, walkways, and retaining walls. The freezing and thawing cycle that characterizes this region's climate can wreak havoc on these structures. Water, finding its way into tiny crevices or under pavers, expands upon freezing, leading to significant damage like cracking or heaving. For patios and walkways made of concrete or stone, a careful examination is essential. These can rapidly expand into larger problems, potentially causing uneven surfaces that pose tripping hazards. This is also a great time to identify and document current 'as-is' conditions of your landscape to easily track and address any potential damages or natural wear and tear.

Retaining walls require a different focus. Check for any bulging or leaning sections, as these are tell-tale signs of internal pressure, often caused by expanding soil or ice. The joints between the stones or blocks in retaining walls should be intact; gaps or loosening can lead to structural failure if there is not proper drainage behind the concealed structure before it freezes. For wooden elements, such as timber retaining walls, inspect for signs of rot or pest infestation, which can be exacerbated by moisture accumulation in winter. Early identification and rectification of these issues are crucial. As we brace for the colder months, proactive steps taken now can prevent costly and extensive repairs later. This preventative maintenance not only ensures the safety and integrity of your hardscapes but also preserves the aesthetic value of your outdoor living spaces.

Municipality tree work choices and how to decide on future plantings

Industry News:

Green Arbor Landscape Contractors, Inc. is thrilled to announce a significant opportunity for urban forestry development in Illinois. With the recent allocation of substantial funding through the Inflation Reduction Act to the US Forest Service, our state is on the brink of a tree-mendous transformation. Illinois has been granted over $37 million in funding, earmarked for urban forestry assistance. This marks the beginning of a multi-year strategy to enhance our green spaces, and it's an ideal time for community engagement in this green revolution.

This funding initiative is not just a win for nature and the environment but also a fantastic opportunity for local municipalities, especially those without dedicated arborists on staff. For communities in disadvantaged areas, this is a chance to revitalize and enrich their landscapes. Green Arbor encourages our municipal clients and contacts to seize this opportunity. We're here to support you in applying for these funds and to partner with you in selecting, planting, maintaining, and managing the urban tree canopy. Our expertise in horticulture and commitment to professionalism make us ideal partners in this endeavor.

Eligibility for funding is specifically targeted towards disadvantaged communities, with over 600 qualifying areas in Illinois. Here is a link to a map provided by the Morton Arboretum that will show the areas qualified. The Chicago Region Trees Initiative has already received $15 million to kickstart a microgrant program, offering substantial financial aid for tree planting and care. The application process is open until March 1, 2024, and we at Green Arbor are poised to assist in every step of the way. Let's work together to create greener, healthier communities in Illinois. For detailed information on this program and how to apply, feel free to reach out to us. Let's turn this funding into flourishing green landscapes across our state!

arborist cutting down pine tree limb safely with helmet and safety glasses

Promotions: Winter Pruning and Tree Removal

As the last leaves of fall give way to the crisp winter months, it's the perfect time to think about the health and structure of your trees. Winter is an ideal season for tree pruning – with trees in dormancy, pruning now can encourage stronger, healthier growth in the spring. It also helps prevent disease spread and pest infestation, as many of these organisms are inactive during cold weather. Plus, with the foliage gone, our experts can easily assess and shape the tree structure for optimal health and aesthetics.

To support your tree care this winter, Green Arbor is offering a special promotion on pruning and tree removal services. Mention the code “WINTERPRUNE22” when invoiced to receive a 10% discount. Whether it's for aesthetic shaping or essential maintenance, let us help you ensure the vitality of your trees for the year ahead.

matte black planter with winter arrangements containing birch branches and pine cones and pine branches with full sun

Spotlight Project: Lawn Maintenance and Planters

In this edition's Spotlight Project, Green Arbor Landscape Contractors, Inc. proudly showcases our enchanting winter arrangements, a centerpiece at several of our brick-and-mortar retail properties. These exquisite displays feature modern 36 x 36 x 36-inch planters, each artfully filled with a blend of nature’s winter elements and festive decor.

Central to these arrangements are striking birch branches, their white bark symbolizing the beauty of winter, contrasted with vibrant red berries that add a pop of color reminiscent of holiday warmth. Diverse pine branches bring evergreen fullness, while frosted pinecones, dusted to resemble snow, pay homage to the Midwest’s winter forests. Completing the scene are carefully placed crystals, sparkling like fresh snowfall under the winter sun, adding a magical touch to these arrangements.

These planters are not just decorations but a celebration of the season’s charm, designed to captivate and enchant visitors to our retail locations. They reflect Green Arbor's dedication to creating beauty and bringing joy to the communities we serve during the winter season.

Jesus Orozco trusted employee of Green Arbor smiling as always

Employee Corner: Our Lawn Maintenance Expert

This month's Employee Corner is all about a true gem in our Green Arbor family - Jesus Orozco. For 19 solid years, Jesus has been the go-to guy for impeccable quality and precision in our projects. He's the one who makes sure every detail is spot on, and it's his commitment to excellence that really sets the bar high around here.

But Jesus brings more to the table than just his skill. He's the mentor of the crew, especially to the new guys who come in all guns blazing, ready to race through tasks. Jesus shows them the ropes with lawn maintenance and landscaping, teaching them that it's not just about speed, but doing it right. And let's talk about his smile – the photo in this newsletter says it all. It's the kind of smile that lights up a room and makes a hard day’s work a bit easier.

As Jesus nears retirement, his impact here is as strong as ever. He’s more than just an employee; he’s the heart of Green Arbor. Here's to you, Jesus, for your incredible journey with us and the many laughs and lessons along the way.

Ask the Experts:

Ask the Experts: Exploring Different Bobcat Attachments for Tree Clearing

1. Carbide-Tipped Mulchers:

  • Ideal for: Precision clearing in areas with small to medium-sized trees, especially where detailed work is needed.

  • Environment: Rocky or uneven terrains requiring durable, precise cutting.

  • Usage: Perfect for selective tree removal, managing overgrowth along trails or in construction site preparations.

2. Drum Mulchers:

  • Ideal for: Rapidly clearing large, open areas with dense vegetation or larger trees.

  • Environment: Flat, spacious environments where extensive, quick clearing is necessary.

  • Usage: Suited for large land development projects, creating firebreaks, or extensive land management where speed is crucial.

3. Rotary Cutter Attachments:

  • Ideal for: Cutting through thick grass, dense brush, and smaller trees.

  • Environment: Areas overrun with dense undergrowth or overgrown fields.

  • Usage: Managing large, overgrown areas, trail maintenance, or clearing underbrush for fire safety and land management.

Each attachment is designed for specific scenarios: Carbide-Tipped Mulchers for precision and durability, Drum Mulchers for efficiency in large-scale clearing, and Rotary Cutters for handling dense undergrowth and smaller trees.

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