Sunday, December 28, 2014

Winter Tree Care Tips - Don't Get Scammed!

Your Trees "R" Us. Inc. family hopes that all our customers, readers and followers had a wonderful, safe and healthy holiday. New Years is fast approaching and we wish you much happiness for 2015.
As the winter season is flying by us, we've been lucky thus far to not have any terribly damaging storms. Albeit cold, snow and ice storms have been few and far between. But, as all Chicagoans know, we are destined to have repeated snow and ice, or at least the high chance of repeated snow and ice for at least a few more months. What you need to know regarding your trees is, can they withstand another year of the elements?

How to you prepare your trees and landscaping for snow and ice storms?

It's really rather simple, but you must have a good working knowledge of tree care. This is where contracting your local tree service to come take a good look at your trees is a smart investment. A tree assessment, reapplication of mulch, and tree pruning are some essential winter tree care steps to take to keep those trees healthy for spring. In some cases preemptive tree removal is also recommended. Acting now, will help you preserve ~ preserve both large and small trees, preserve your investment, and preserve the lovely landscaping of your property.

What should you expect from your tree service when you call them for a winter tree assessment? A professional tree service should provide you with one of their Certified Arborists. I would not recommend any tree service that does not have at least one Certified Arborist on staff. At any time we have anywhere from 2-4 Certified Arborists that we use for these assessments. The arborist will assess your trees truthfully and based on industry-standard recommendations. The condition of the tree will be thoroughly inspected without regard to preconceived notions that might cause inappropriate tree care. Beware of arborists who are not certified. Some unqualified arborists will use scare tactics to promote unnecessary tree services including unnecessary tree removal. It is also a good idea to make sure the arborist that comes to your home is the arborist from the company you hired. We have heard of many situations where that wasn't the case. For example, if you hire Trees "R"Us, Inc. to send out an Arborist, make sure the Arborist that shows up uses all Trees "R" Us, Inc.
branded items (marked car, quote sheet, business card, etc.) If not, you're being scammed and call the company immediately!

A professional tree service will also assess trees using only the most standard and universal methodology. At Trees "R" Us, Inc., our approach allows us to asses trees in a manner consistent with the best practices used by tree care professionals around the world. Our arborists are all certified and understand how trees grow, live and die, and most importantly how the care of trees changes with the seasons and as the tree ages. They also are well versed on tree diseases and bug. They know what to look for and how to treat them. We have a Plant Health Care Division that is devoted to only focusing on this type of tree care.

In addition, a professional tree service will be very busy during this time of year. If you feel pressure from hard sales tactics or scare tactics, RUN! Run the other way and contact a different service. There is never any reason for this type of behavior, especially during this time of year!

Follow these tips and you can rest assured that you'll be getting an honest and accurate tree assessment, a fair price, and the best quality care for your trees.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. prides itself not only on being the best tree service in the suburbs of Chicago, but also in educating its customers about trees, tree maintenance and tree care. As tree service providers to the North shore, north suburbs, and northwest suburbs of Chicago Lake and Cook County), we offer exceptional tree trimming, tree removals, stump grinding and plant health care. Contact Trees "R" Us, Inc. today for more information or an analysis of your trees and plants. Check us out on the web at or call us at 847-913-9069.

President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Can I still get my trees trimmed in the winter?

Can I trim my trees in the winter?

Our phone seems to ring with the same question over and over in these winter months. "Can I still get my trees trimmed even though it's winter?" Well, yes! And in fact, this is our busy season.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. can trim your trees all winter long. Winter actually is a great time for tree work, especially tree trimming and pruning of other shrubs. There is a common misconception that winter is not the right time to trim trees, however this is not true. There's no better time to trim many trees than the winter. If your trees are deciduous, then now is the time! So, give a call or send us an email and we'll get you on our schedule. 

What you don't want to do is trim the evergreens right now without the help of a tree service. Some evergreens are OK to trim in the winter while others are not. It is important to know what kind of evergreens you have in your yard and if they are OK to trim. 

Whether your property needs tree maintenance that includes deadwood pruning or house clearance, tree limb removal or removing an entire tree, Trees "R" Us, Inc. has properly trained staff and industry standard equipment to get the job done right.

Chicago-area residents suffered through a another summer of excessive heat, rain, and wind. We had a few storms that packed a punch and were especially windy. The high winds caused extensive tree damage throughout Chicago and the suburbs. If you have a tree or multiple trees that suffered storm damage that has not been fixed yet, Trees "R" Us, Inc. can give you a fast and professional quote on tree pruning or tree removal.

There is still time for you to get that tree fixed, trimmed, staked or cabled, and there's no better time than the present!

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is dedicated to providing you with exceptional service. Our highly trained and
certified team will provide you the information you need to make an educated and informed decision.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is a professional tree service in the Chicagoland area. We service the north shore, north suburbs and northwest suburbs of Chicago. Trees "R" Us, Inc. has 4 certified arborists on staff ready to assess your plants and tree care needs in a timely manner. Our services include tree trimming, pruning, stump grinding, emergency tree services, tree removal, cabling and bracing, fertilization and plant health care.

Thanks for reading,
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Will Firewood Help Save Me Money?

Will firewood help save me money? 

We get that question a lot. The short answer, yes.  However there are some caveats. 

First, be sure to only buy hardwoods like oak and hickory. These woods burn much longer and some research says they create less creosote. Creosote is the icky black gunk that builds up in the chimney stack of your fireplace. This is not only icky, but also dangerous! It can cause chimney fires and my guess is that you don't want to be breathing that stuff in either.

Another must with firewood is that you should only buy seasoned firewood. Seasoned firewood really is just dry firewood. The longer the wood sits around in the right place under the right conditions, the drier it gets. 
Once you've got these two bases covered, it's time to start burning. I think you'll find that the cost of the firewood compared to the cost savings in your heating bill will be just that...a savings!

Also keep in mind the other benefits to burning wood over using your furnace, like being eco-friendly and green! Burning firewood creates a radiant heat which heats a room much more evenly than convective heat. Convective heat is essentially forced air heat, which is what most of us are accustomed to. 

So if you're thinking that it seems like a good idea to fire up the fireplace or wood burning stove, you're right!

Just remember, firewood is a good thing to SUPPLEMENT the heating of your home, probably not replace your heating source, unless you live in a warmer climate where not much heat is needed during the winter months. 

Think of it this way, a fireplace is very useful in a room such as a family room where the family can hang out at night and keep warm, while keeping the rest of the house a little cooler (which is better for sleeping).  However, a wood burning stove, if vented properly, can send heat throughout the house. Adding fans to circulate the air also helps get the heat to far away rooms. 

Those of you in the Chicagoland area that are looking for a reputable source for firewood can contact Trees "R" Us, Inc. at 847-913-9069. In addition to providing seasoned firewood, Trees "R" Us, Inc. offers excellent tree services.

And we know our firewood just like we know our trees. Don’t stress the bodily wear and tear of having to cut your own firewood, when you can purchase a face cord, 1 cord, 1/2 cord, or 1/4 cord from the professionals at Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Winter and the holiday season is here. Be prepared for the snow, cold weather and all that Mother Nature has in store!

Contact Trees "R" Us, Inc. today for a free estimate of any tree services needed at 847-913-9069, or

Thanks for reading,
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Ring in the New Year by disposing of your Christmas Tree the right way

The holidays will be here and over before you know it. After all the Christmas hustle and bustle, there's one last thing on your list to do. Get rid of that Christmas tree before your home is filled with needles and that tree becomes even more of a fire hazard. 

There are a few ways to recycle your tree when the holidays are over. 

1. You can chop it into smaller pieces. You can then put it directly into your compost pile or the chipper and have mulch ready for your tree, plants and garden. 

2. You can throw it away. Well, rather you can recycle it. Check with your town for a Christmas tree recycling event. Most towns do this now as it is the most environmentally friendly way to dispose of your tree. Most towns will schedule set days for tree pickup. They'll come around with a chipper to turn the trees into landscaping materials or haul them off to a landfill. However, beware: Most towns won't take trees that are wrapped in any unorganic material, like the plastic disposal bags. So if you want to be neat about disposal, wrap the tree in craft paper before hauling it out to the curb.

You'll want to double check that your tree is free of nails, wire and all decorations to ensure safety of the city's staff that will be handling the trees. Remember, only Christmas trees are accepted - no garlands, wreaths, or yard waste - and no business or commercial use.

Get ready to ring in the New Year. Woah. 2015 is already here. 

Thanks for reading,
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Have you picked out your Christmas tree yet?

Christmas is just weeks away. For those of you that are fans of the real Christmas tree, we've compiled some tips to help you pick a tree with confidence and take care of it when you bring it home.

1. Measure twice, cut once. Where are you putting the tree in your home? What kind of space do you have for a tree and what size tree will fit there? Remember to subtract the height of your stand and the tree topper you want to use to get the maximum tree height you can fit. Also clear the space where you'll put the tree and see how deep it is. Different species are different girths, so you want to be sure you won't be squishing the branches against the wall. And keep an eye on the size of your stand. You want to be sure the trunk of your tree will fit in it, and that it's big enough to keep your tree upright.

2. Once you're at the purchasing lot, picking a tree is a lot like picking fruits and vegetables from the produce aisle at the grocery store. Touch and smell makes a difference. Test the branches. gently pull the ends of the branches. If you wind up with a handful of needles, this is not the tree for you. Also crush a few needles in the palm of your hand. You should smell 'Christmas'. If not, move along.

3. Make sure the tree's trunk fits your stand. Common sense rule, but you'd be surprised how many neglect to measure this.

4. Before you walk off the lot with that perfect tree, have the lot attendant put it through a shaker (if they have one—some farms use a blower, though a vigorous bounce will do as well). This will shake off any dead, interior needles. Don't worry—it's perfectly natural for an evergreen to have some dead needles on it from fall. Then have the tree sent through the baling machine to wrap it in netting for easy transport.

5. Getting a Christmas tree is a lot like getting a bouquet of flowers. Many of you will cut the ends of the stems of your cut flowers. You'll want do this to your tree too, but use a saw, not scissors. LOL. Cutting the end off the trunk is critical to opening up the veins that will deliver water to the branches. Use a pruning saw, and take at least an inch off. You can have the lot do it before you leave if you're headed for home, but you should wait if you're going to be out more than four hours. Otherwise, the end will glaze over with new pitch, and the tree won't take up water.

6. In addition, keep your tree away from heat and draft sources like fireplaces, radiators and television sets. Test your light cords and connections before hanging them on the tree to make sure they're in good working order. You don't want to use cords with cracked insulation or broken or empty sockets. Also be sure to unplug the lights before you go to bed or leave the house. Never overload electrical circuits and use only UL approved lighting accessories.

7. Put the tree into it's stand while it is still wrapped.

8. Now it's time for water and lots of it. Add fresh, clean water as soon as possible. The first couple of days the tree is going to suck up at least a gallon of water. The actual amount a tree can consume varies, so be vigilant the first two days, refilling when the stand gets low until the levels stay steady. Never let the water level drop beyond the cut end or you run the risk of sap forming, which will seal off the tree's ability to absorb water. There's really no need for any additives, like aspirin or plant food, as long as the water is clean and fresh.

9. Now decorate to your heart's content!

Enjoy the holiday season!

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is a professional tree service in the Chicagoland area. We service the north shore, north suburbs and northwest suburbs of Chicago. Trees "R" Us, Inc. has 4 certified arborists on staff ready to assess your plants and tree care needs in a timely manner. Our services include tree trimming, pruning, stump grinding, emergency tree services, tree removal, cabling and bracing, fertilization and plant health care.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. can be contacted at 847-913-9069 or through our online forms at

Thanks for reading,
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

The DOs and DON'Ts of Firewood

It's firewood season. Who doesn't love a nice campfire, a roaring fire in the fireplace or simply the warmth of the woodburner heating your home? While have a fire to enjoy is a nice amenity, there are some hazards that you should know about before you start your season of cozy fires. 
Here's what is ok in the wondrous world of firewood.
The DOs. 
You need to keep insects and rodents from making their homes in your wood pile. You should stack your firewood on supports that are at least 4 inches off the ground. 
You also need to protect you stash of wood from the elements and decay. Cover your wood pile with a tarp to protect it from getting soaked with rain and snow. You should also stack the wood with the bark side up. This will also help prevent decay.

The DON'Ts
Do not allow the wood to lean against an exterior wall of your home. There are many reasons for this. But let me paint one picture for you. The wood catches fire and it spread quickly, right into your home!
Do not use flammable liquids in your fireplace in hopes of getting a fire going easily.
Do not  treat firewood with pesticides. This will release toxic fumes when burned. Not-to-mention that this process is ineffective.
Do not burn plastic or paper with color printing. Sunday comics, magazine pages, cereal boxes are all off limits. 
Do not burn logs laden with poison ivy, even if the poison ivy is dead. If you have any respiratory issues, this will only aggravate them. 
And finally, do not put the ash in your composting bins or garden. Ash belongs in an aluminum garbage can with a tight fitting lid. 
Are you in need of firewood and live in the Chicagoland area? Check out our website for our firewood details which we will deliver and stack by the cord or face cord.
Thanks for reading,
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Not All Firewood is Created Equal

It is the season for firewood. And boy do we have firewood to offer you! But first you must know that not all firewood is created equal. 
Who doesn't love a nice cozy fire. The warmth of the fire coupled with the crackling of the wood and the aroma of the burning wood is captivating and addicting. However, if you are going to be building a fire regularly it is important to know what wood to burn to get the most band for your buck. 
Not all firewood is created equal. Some burn slowly, some burn fast. Some smoke and others crackle and pop. So, what’s the difference?
Freshly cut wood is not what you want. Logs that have been around for less than six months produce less heat. Ou'll go through this wood quickly and not be very warm! Not to mention that this is the wood that pops and sparks making a very smokey which is a fire hazard. This is often referred to as 'juicy' or 'green' wood as it has not had the chance to dry out completely. 
How do you determine if a log is 'juicy' or 'green'? It's so simple! Whack pieces of firewood together. The dry logs will have an almost musical ringing sound while green wood makes a dull thud.
Another wood to steer clear of is pine or other evergreen wood. Evergreens contain a sticky sap called pitch. This is another wood that snaps crackles and pops. Dangerous! The sap also vaporizes in fire’s heat, rises in the chimney and creates creosote. Creosote in the chimney is bad. 
Denser, heavier woods are the best. The denser the wood is are the more heating value they have. That is why a cord of oak – considered a premium firewood – will always cost more than a cord of cottonwood. Oak cord weight more than twice as much as the cottonwood and also offer that much more heating value.
Look at it this way. A ton of “seasoned” cottonwood will provide the exact same heating value as a ton of “seasoned” oak, but it takes a lot more cottonwood to add up to a ton. This also means a lot more trips to the wood pile. Other dense woods are hedge, hickory, locust, hackberry and ash. 
Dense woods also the highest British Thermal Units (BTUs). High BTUs mean high, intense heat.  Keep in mind though that these woods are more difficult to ignite. Lighter woods (silver maple, elm and cottonwood) are less dense and ignite much faster and thus can be good as a starter wood. However, they give off less heat and burn faster. This is okay if you want a quick warming fire or short fire that will burn out before you go to bed.
Now go have a cozy warm fire and enjoy the season!
Thanks for reading,
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Tree Clearing is NOT What You Think

When you hear the phrase 'tree clearing' what comes to mind? Removing a large amount of trees from a specific area? A forested landscape going bare? Piled up uprooted trees? That is the general thought, but tree clearing when speaking about the trees you want to KEEP on your own property is something entirely different. Clearing, when it comes to the tree care of  your personal trees that you own, especially the young trees, is simply being mindful to pull up any grass and weeds for a radius of at least 2 feet around the tree. This is called 'CLEARING'. You must CLEAR the area so that the tree and roots can get the sunlight, water and nutrients they need. This is very different than the 'tree clearing' term that most of are used to hearing about. It is important that you know this as many tree services will recommend you preform tree clearing to help your trees grow, especially young trees and we won't want you to have the wrong idea of what to do! 

To clear the area for your trees, use your spade shovel to cut straight down into the grass. The flat shovel was good for cutting under the roots of the grass to keep the sod in big pieces. Try not to get too close to the tree's roots. We want to keep them in tact. Major tree roots often grow within a few inches of the soil surface. Some species, such as maples, grow roots particularly close to the surface.  Mulch the area under the tree with compost and/or wood chips. These materials are porous enough to allow sufficient oxygen supply to the soil and may actually encourage fine root growth. Acting as an insulator, the mulch will minimize frost-heaving and erosion. Our subsidiary, Organic Solutions Inc., has many high quality varieties of hardwood mulch for our Chicagoland readers.

There are so many benefits to keeping a good layer of mulch around your trees and plants. You'll do much less weeding, and as a result need to water your plants and trees less. Mulch will even help the tree's root get the much needed water they need. 

Back to clearing ... Early in the year, when the soil is moist, cover the cleared area with the mulch or your choice. This helps retain moisture near the roots, reduces competition from weeds, and means there is no need to use grass-cutting machinery near the tree where it might damage the bark.

If you follow these steps your tree clearing should be a success for you and a major benefit for your trees - especially young trees. Remember tree clearing isn't chopping down thousands of trees in the rainforest. When it's on your property, tree clearing is helping your trees grow big and strong.

As always, if you have questions about your tree's care, contact your local tree service. As a Chicago tree service, they are well versed in all this and will give you the assistance you need. Those of you that are local to the Chicago area, Trees "R" Us, Inc. will help you with the care of your trees. In addition, their plant health care division has several Chicago certified arborists that are highly trained in caring for plants and trees. 

To read more on how to care for your younger trees, click I here and here

Thanks for reading,
Jenni Willis,
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Young Tree Care Instructions

Young trees are the ones that need the most TLC. If you are going to skimp on  tree care, don't do it for your young trees. You need to protect your investment of the tree and the best way to do so is to give it the proper attention. 

The best advice I can give you is to call upon your local tree service for assistance with your overall or general tree care, especially for the younger trees. A tree service can only perform tree work, but can give the advice you need to make sure you are making the right decisions when it comes to maintaining, fertilizing and protecting your trees. 

Not to mention that many tree services are best left to professionals. While it is great to be a do-it-yourselfer, you don't want to jeopardize the health of your tree or waste the dollars already invested in the tree by making rookie mistakes. 

We've done many, many blog posts about young tree care. If you're just stumbling upon this post and have missed the previous ones, our informational posts on young tree care found herehere and here!

Take a look at those and they will guide you through the adventures of tree care for your youngster tree. If you still have questions, give us a shout out! We'd love to help you.

Thanks for reading and taking care of those young trees.
President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

8 Tips to Get Your Trees Through the Upcoming Winter

Do you want your trees to be to come out of winter healthier than they started? 

To keep your trees happy and healthy all winter you need to give them some extra TLC this fall. Good fall tree care is essential to give your trees the best start to the growing season in the spring. 

Fall is actually a good time to plant new trees and shrubs too. 

These guys especially need to be well taken care of in the fall so that they survive the winter and start the spring energized and ready to grown strong. 

So what so you need to do?

Here's our fall tree care checklist to help you get started on protecting your trees from the upcoming cold, wind, snow and freezing temperatures. 

Fall Tree Care Tips

  1. Mulch. Use mulch to protect your trees and their roots from extreme temperature changes. The mulch will insulate the soil helping keep roots from damage and giving the tree less stress.
  2. Take a close look at your trees and have any deadwood removed. Prune any other unsafe branches. Wind and snow can easily make branches snap and where they fall inevitably is in a most undesirable on your car or on your roof!
  3.  If you have any hazardous trees, have them taken of by a professional tree service or certified arborist. If you don't know if you have a hazardous tree, we have lots of posts on this topic.
  4. Do a fall fertilization. This should be part of  your annual regimen for your trees. Your local tree service can do this one for you too. 
  5. Plant any new trees and shrubs and protect them with a good layer of mulch.
  6.  Rake away any fallen leaves from garden beds, landscaping beds and turf. Leaves decompose really well, so start a compost pile for your leaves. 
  7.  Do one last seasonal inspection of your trees leaves (if any are left) and bark for bugs, insects or infestations of any kind. You'll want to treat the tree if you find any critters feasting on it. A tree service with a plant health care division specializes in these type of treatments, so a call to them is a good idea. 
  8.  Invest in cabling and/or bracing small or weak trees. Mother Nature is harsh. Sometimes your
    trees need a  little extra protection from what She throws at them. Protect the investment you've already made by cabling or bracing your weaker trees. 

Go outside!

The best part of this checklist, is that to complete it, you've got to go outside! What a great time of year to go out and enjoy the brisk fall air and the gorgeous fall colors.  Go for a walk through the yard and through your neighborhood with the family and take in it all in before it is covered with a blanket of white.

Show us your stuff!

Show us your stuff and we'll feature it on Facebook! Do you have gorgeous fall colors in your yard? Snap a photo and post it to our Facebook wall! We’d love to see it and share it with all our fans! Click here to find us on Facebook. If you have questions about your yard or if there are any specific topics you’d like to see us cover in this blog, leave a comment below. To discuss a project, contact us at 847-913-9069 or at our website at!
Thanks for reading,
Jenni, President/CEO Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Have You Trimmed Your Trees This Fall? 4 Reasons To Do So.

October is a great time for pruning trees. 

If you'r not a professional arborist, we do not recommend taking on tree trimming in October. However, if you are willing to hire a professional tree service for the joe  October is an ideal month to give them a call.

October is the ideal month for tree trimming for several reasons:

  1. During the early autumn, the tree's changing and getting ready for winter. One of the things that happens is when the tree has a wound. like from pruning, it starts to speed up the healing process. These wounds heal quicker and quicker as the season progresses.   In fact, late winter is an even better time to prune because tree wounds
    tend to close very quickly. However, then you are dealing with frozen temperatures and snow. So sticking to fall for pruning is still a great choice.
  2. Prune after the leaves have fallen and the tree has entered dormancy. This is the perfect time to see the tree’s structure and identify diseases or insect problems more easily.
  3. Fall is the perfect time to remove dead, damaged or diseased wood for the reasons mentioned above. It’s best to hire a professional arborist to remove large limbs, out of reach branches or other large jobs that are tough to handle.  Trees "R" Us, Inc. has certified arborists fully trained and ready to help you with your tree care this fall.
  4. Late summer and early fall pruning can help stimulate a tree or shrub’s growth.

I highly recommend hiring a Tree Service that has Certified Arborists to do the Job!  

Here's why:
Tree work of any sort can be dangerous, but especially if your climbing high in the air to cut some deadwood or hazardous branches. Not only is the tree itself a hazard, but you are at risk of severely harming yourself if you make one wrong move. A trained staff of tree climbers and Arborists from your local tree service will get the job done much faster than you can, use the right equipment to do so, and get it done correctly so your tree will survive the winter. The last thing you want is to kill your investment you worked so hard to maintain through the years.
Trees "R" Us, Inc. has provided stellar tree-trimming services for over 20 years. Services include tree trimming, tree and stump removal, tree cabling, tree bracing, fertilization and more.

Don’t trust your tree-pruning needs to anyone other than a professional service. Call Trees "R" Us, Inc. today for a free quote. Call today at 847-913-9069, or email at

Thanks for reading,

Sunday, October 12, 2014

4 Easy-Care Fall Plants

Looking for some easy-to-grow fall plants? 

These 4 plants require little-to-no maintenance and are perfect for fall.

Fanny’s Aster

Aster oblongifolius, ‘Fanny’ grows into a dense mound about 3 feet tall and wide. Hundreds of rich purple, daisy-shaped blooms smother this tough perennial in October and November. Give it sun and well-drained soil. Crushed leaves emit a lemony scent and butterflies love the flowers. We love this flower for fall. It is easy to take care of and looks great for the majority of the season. 


Lots of goldenrods are native to the South, but there are several varieties that grow in the Northwest too. In fact, there are many varieties of this plant and all are showy, flowery fall beauties. Some are invasive, so watch out, they'll spread like wildfire. You'll enjoys sprays of bright-yellow blooms in late summer and fall, attracting butterflies from all over. Combine it with blue and purple flowers, like Fanny’s aster and wild ageratum for a real show stopper. Give it sun and well-drained soil. 

On a side note, there's a misconception that Goldenrod causes hay fever  This is not true  Ragweed is the one that causes hay fever. 


There's nothing easier to grow than sedum. One time I broke off a sedum stem from a plant and literally stuck it in the ground. It grew! It grew into a nicely-sized sedum plant. 
Like with many perennials, there are many varieties to choose from. 

Funny thing about sedum is that is has  neon variety. Some say you should wear protective eyewear when ‘Neon’ showy sedum blooms!

The unearthly bubblegum-pink glow from the blooms atop this succulent perennial in late summer and fall will burn right through your eyelids.

Whatever variety you choose, you'll enjoy clumps plump, gray-green leaves about 18 inches tall and wide and almost cauliflower-like blooms that come in an array of colors. Do butterflies like it too? You bet. It’s great for containers or the front of a mixed border. Give  sedum lots of sun and well-drained soil. Forget about ever watering. It doesn’t need it. 

Chinese Elm

My favorite medium-size shade & street tree.
Most shade trees that grow fast are horrible candidates for the average home garden. (Think silver maple, willows, mulberry, mimosa, sycamore, and poplars.) They’re messy, buggy, weedy, weak-wooded, and have shallow roots that invade water lines and lift up pavement. Not Chinese elm (Ulmus parviflora), especially a superior selection named ‘Allee’ (pronounced al-lay).

Trees "R" Us, Inc. offers plant health care as well as a highly knowledgeable staff that includes 4 certified arborists.  When you choose Trees "R" Us, Inc. you can rest assured that you've made the right choice for your tree care, tree maintenance, and plant health care needs.  Trees "R" Us, Inc. services the North Shore and the Northwest suburbs of Chicago.  You can contact Trees "R" Us, Inc. via the web at or by phone at 847-913-9069.

Thanks for reading, 
Jenni, President/CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Fertilize Your Trees to Help Them Get Through the Winter

Want to give your trees a great start to the spring?

Fertilization is a good choice when prepping your tree for a potentially harsh winter. When trying to keep your trees healthy, fertilization is another good choice.  The application of moderate rates of slow-release nitrogen fertilizer materials to the soil over the root zone of young to mature trees is beneficial to their growth and survival.   Excessive rates should be avoided and trees past maturity or in senescence should not be fertilized.

Fertilization can be difficult to master, so consult with a tree service or arborist for advice.  There are different mixes for different trees, when to apply, how to apply and what type to apply can be a difficult concept to master.  But getting it right is crucial to a successful fertilization plan. I highly recommend seeking the assistance of a professional tree service, like Trees "R" Us, Inc. when it comes to fertilization.  Most high quality tree care companies have several certified arborists who will take all the guess work our of fertilizing. 

Trees "R" Us, Inc. has 4 certified arborists on staff who can answer all your questions about plant and tree fertilization.  In addition, a tree service's plant health care division, if they have one, is exactly what you need.  The plant health care division provides arborist services, fertilizations, and general health care for all your plants and trees.  Trees "R" Us, Inc. offers plant health care and much more. If you are local to the Chicagoland area, please give us a call to find out more about how we can help you keep your trees healthy.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is a professional tree service in the Chicagoland area.  We service the north shore, north suburbs and northwest suburbs of Chicago.  Trees "R" Us, Inc. has 4 certified arborists on staff ready to assess your plants and tree care needs in a timely manner.  Our services include tree trimming, pruning, stump grinding, emergency tree services, tree removal, cabling and bracing, fertilization and plant health care.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. can be contacted at 847-913-9069 or through our online forms at

Thanks for reading,

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Pruning season is upon us!

Are you thinking of pruning your trees?

There are a few basic pruning practices you should take note of. You should know that routine maintenance pruning of dead wood can be done at any time. However, it is easiest and a best practice to prune live wood when it is dormant. As should flowering trees be pruned after blooming. There are some exception to the rule. so it is best to check with local experts or arborists about exceptions.

When a tree is too big to be pruned from the ground, it is time to call in an Arborist. Hiring an arborist is a decision that should not be taken lightly; tree work should be done only by those trained and equipped to work in trees in a manner that is safe both for them and for the trees. Click here to find out more about how to hire an arborist.

Best Practices for Pruning

There is a proper way to prune trees. Pruning should rid the tree of excess end weight. Pruning is often done to remove dead wood from a tree, to thin the crown for air circulation or to balance weight, and to provide ground clearance. Consult with an arborist on the best plan of action. Each tree grows differently and needs an individual assessment.

If any tree service or arborist recommended tree topping, run the other! Tree topping is an unacceptable practice and actually makes the tree worse.

Bottom line is that if the tree is too big to be pruned from the ground, then you should leave the pruning to your local tree service. Consult with them on a proper pruning plan and keep your trees happy and healthy all year long.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. prides itself not only on being the best tree service in the suburbs of Chicago, but also in educating its customers about trees, tree maintenance and tree care. As tree service providers to the North shore, north suburbs, and northwest suburbs of Chicago, we offer exceptional tree trimming, tree removals, stump grinding and plant health care. Contact Trees "R" Us, Inc. today for more information or an analysis of your trees and plants. Check us out on the web at or call us at 847-913-9069.

Jenni, President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Tree dangers - Remove them before winter

Winter is coming sooner than later. We're bound to get a few doozie-of-a-storms, so let's talk about how to keep your trees safe from damage, and your wallet safe from emergency tree service charges.

The first step to determine if there is tree damage is really simple. You just need to aware. Take a good look at your trees.

Look at the trunk. The entire tree can break or split if there are cavities or cracks in its trunk. However, the presence of a cavity does not necessarily mean the tree needs to be removed. This depends on how extensive the cavity is, where the tree is growing, and the overall state of the tree's health. Look for places on the tree’s trunk where there is no bark. This can indicate a dead section or a fungus attack. Also look for insects. Insects often attack a sick tree’s trunk, leaving very fine sawdust shavings that are clearly visible because they are light in color. Sometimes a tree grows two or more trunks. The points where the multiple trunks connect must be inspected for weakness or past storm damage too.

Another thing to inspect are the branches. One of the most obvious tree dangers is dead wood that can fall. You can spot dead wood easily: dead branches have leaves that are completely brown or there won't be any leaves at all. Look for pockets of decay or rot sometimes exist on the upper side of a branch, where they are invisible to a ground observer.

If any of these conditions are present, call a certified arborist to find out if your tree is stable and healthy.

To protect yourself, your home, and the health of your tree, have weak, broken, or dead branches trimmed or removed!

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is a professional tree service in the Chicagoland area. We service the north shore, north suburbs and northwest suburbs of Chicago. Trees "R" Us, Inc. has 4 certified arborists on staff ready to assess your plants and tree care needs in a timely manner. Our services include tree trimming, pruning, stump grinding, emergency tree services, tree removal, cabling and bracing, fertilization and plant health care.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. can be contacted at 847-913-9069 or through our online forms at

Jenni, President & CEO/ Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

2014 Fall Colors in Illinois - What to Expect

What Colors Will Fall Bring?

Fall is definitely on its way. Little leaves here and there have already started to change colors around us in Northern Illinois. Before you know it, we'll be surrounded by bright yellow, orange, red and purple leaves.

Do you know what makes the leaves change colors? And do you know why each year the same trees'
leaves will show different fall colors? Well, the answer certainly isn't an easy one. We need to consider many factors like chlorophyl, tannins, xanthophylls, artenoids, among a host of other things. Trees are complex living things, so let me see if I can make this as simple as possible.

I can boil this down to 1 thing: weather. In a very abbreviated version, I can tell you that autumn leaf coloration and intensity is different each year because of the weather. The amount and exposure of colored chemicals in leaves depend on the weather. Green chlorophyll disappears fastest during an autumn with bright sunlight and cold days. This disappearance quickly exposes the leaves' orange and yellow pigments to view. Dry weather concentrates sugar in the cell sap, which speeds up the manufacture of red compounds. So the most colorful autumns depend on the weather. Dry, sunny days of an Indian summer that are followed by cool, dry nights will create the best season for the fall leaf show. You can predict good viewing if you analyze the weather conditions. So, bright, sunny, cold days mean orange and yellow leaves. Dry, sunny days and nights equal more reds. And an Indian summer should yield a spectacular color show. Can anyone take a stab at what they think we're going to get this year?

When Is the Peak of the Season?

You'll have to wait a few more weeks to find out for sure. The dates for peak fall foliage for Illinois are: (Northern) Oct. 5-21; (Southern) Oct. 12-28. 
Until then, let's hope for some temperate, dry weather.

Thanks for reading,

Jenni, President and CEO Trees R Us, Inc.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

A Tree Care Checklist Fall

When is comes to tree care, fall is a season that is often overlooked as a great time to give your trees some TLC. Everyone's excited when spring had sprung to get their trees in tip top shape. Summer rolls in and trees seem to still be on the priority list. But when fall rolls in, people seem to think their work is done in terms of tree care. This couldn't be further from the truth! Fall is the perfect time to ensure your trees will survive the winter and start the next growing season with gusto! Here are just a few tips to get you going on your fall tree care regimen.

Fertilize for fall.

Fall is a great time to fertilize. Colder weather lies ahead, but your trees don't have to face the winds, rains and snowfall empty-handed. Consult one of Trees "R" Us, Inc.'s professionally trained arborists to determine ways you can help protect your trees and condition them for a healthy growing season in the future.


Make sure to give your trees a good gulp of water before the winter months are here. Use a soaker hose or a drip irrigation system to really give them a good soak. This will also help them stay well hydrated throughout the winter months.

Plant Now.

Some trees shed their leaves in autumn and sprout new life in the spring, but fall is actually the opportune time to plant new trees. Since temperatures are much cooler and there is much less chance of stress from sun scorch, drought or extremely high temperatures, newly planted trees get the chance to build root mass and prepare for winter dormancy this season.

Cabling is an important step not to be overlooked.

Cabling should be installed now to avoid tree damage in the winter. Snow storms, ice build up on trees, strong winds, and build up of snow can easily cause tree damage to any tree of any size,, shape and age. You should have your trees assessed for potential weak spots that could be damaged by the winter elements. Cabling these trees will keep them healthy and will protect your investment for years to come.

For questions or concerns about your trees, contact Trees "R" Us, Inc. a professional tree service to the Chicago suburban area. Give us a call at 847-913-9069 to discuss your tree care needs. 

Thanks for reading,
Jenni, President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Fall Fertilization Tips for your Trees

Fall is here. Time to fertilize. 

With a hot summer and cold winter, trees are bound to lose vital nutrients in the soil. To help make sure your trees gain nutrients lost this summer and continue to feed over the winter, apply a slow-release fertilizer to replace nutrients and improve resistance to damage from disease, insects and stressful weather.

Feed your tree what it needs.

The proper fertilizer will help the tree and the nutrients in the soil that are feeding the tree.
Also know your numbers. All fertilizers have 3 numbers on the packaging. These numbers refer to the 3 key ingredients in the fertilizer. The first refers to the nitrogen, the second phosphorus and the
3rd is the potassium. They are basic nutrients for building up the cells of the plants and different plants have different needs for these elements. Usually, the percentage of each element will be marked on the bags of the fertilizer like 15-10-5. This marking means the ratio of the nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium is 15%, 10% and 5% respectively. Since the sum of these numbers s less than 100 percent and the rest of the weight are actually some filling materials. Knowing what combination to use on your trees is essential in keeping the tree healthy. Ideally these numbers should match those of the closest natural environment, like a forest. To find out what combination will suit your trees, contact your local tree service for a assessment. 

With proper maintenance and some regular fertilization, you can have landscape trees that will be valuable components to your landscape and they will stay healthy for a long time.

For a complete assessment of your trees and if you are local to the Chicagoland area (Cook, Lake, McHenry, Kane, or Will counties) give Trees "R" Us, Inc. a call. We're her to help you with issues just as this, including tree trimming, pruning, tree removal, stump grinding and general plant health care. 

Thanks for reading,

Saturday, August 23, 2014

What's this sooty stuff on my trees?

Sooty Mold

Another beautiful day in Illinois. You take a nice stroll through your yard and notice this awful black, sooty stuff on your trees. Gross! Although hideous in site, it is probably of no concern to your plant's
health. It is likely that the black stuff you are seeing is sooty mold. Sooty mold is caused by several different fungi. The fungi don’t infect plants, but grow on the sugary honeydew excreted by aphids, scales and other insects.

Where can I find sooty mold?

In Iowa and Illinois, sooty mold is most common on maple, pine, linden and elm trees. While sooty mold can reduce plant vigor by blocking sunlight and interfering with photosynthesis, the damage is mainly aesthetic. Sooty molds are associated with high temperatures and increased stress brought on by limited moisture. During drought, aphid populations and their honeydew production typically increase on foliage undergoing moisture stress.  So, keep plants well watered and free of insects.

What should I do about it?

It is not necessary to control sooty mold as it does not cause serious harm to healthy, well established trees.

In addition, it’s usually not necessary to control aphid and scale infestations on trees with insectides. Damage to healthy trees is seldom serious. Plus, natural enemies and weather usually provide adequate control of scale and aphids. However, to control the infestation reduce the population of
sucking insects that excrete honeydew. Use the appropriate recommended chemicals that control aphids and other sucking insects. Also, a good washing of infested tree's foliage (if possible) can dilute the honeydew and wash off mold. That just may be all that is needed.

To help you diagnose your tree's problem, whether it is sooty mold or any other tree disease, treat it and keep it healthy for years to come, it is recommended you consult with your local tree service.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is a professional tree service in the Chicagoland area. We service the north shore, north suburbs and northwest suburbs of Chicago. Trees "R" Us, Inc. has 4 certified arborists on staff ready to assess your plants and tree care needs in a timely manner. Our services include tree trimming, pruning, stump grinding, emergency tree services, tree removal, cabling and bracing, fertilization and plant health care.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. can be contacted at 847-913-9069 or through our online forms at

Thanks for reading,


Saturday, August 16, 2014

What to do to keep my Apple and Pear Trees healthy

Are you hoping for a good crop from your apple and pear trees this year? Such great fruits to harvest as the season gets colder and many of our other trees and plants have stopped producing. However, many apple and pear trees are commonly affected by a disease called  
Fire Blight. 

What to look for

Fire blight affects many apple trees and pear trees. It damages cotoneaster, crabapple, hawthorne, mountain ash, ornamental pear, firethorn, plum quince and spiraea trees. Fire blight, caused by the blight bacterium Erwinia amylovora, can affect many parts of a susceptible plant but generally noticed first on damaged leaves.

Fortunately, Fire Blight is really easy to diagnose. Start looking for signs o f fire blight in spring when temperatures get back up to the mid 60s. Look for a brown-to-black scorched appearance of twigs, flowers and foliage. It is usually seen first in Spring when blossoms and fruit spurs appear water-soaked, wilted, shriveled and finally turn brown to black.

Shoot blight occurs when infections begin at shoot tips, moving rapidly down the shoots and then to limbs and trunk. Apple and crabapple leaves turn brown, pear leaves turn black. Frequently, the tip of the blighted shoot bends over and resembles a shepherd’s crook.

How to treat fire blight

Prune. Reduced Fertilization. Chemicals applications. 
 Control fire blight through pruning. Remove all stems showing symptoms as they first appear. Cut back into the healthy portion of both stems and limbs.

You can also control fire blight by making sure you do not over fertilize. Too much fertilizer will cause rapid new growth which is most susceptable to the blight. Moderate fertilizer to reduce rapid tree or shrub growth. Over pruning can have the same effect so you should refrain from heavy pruning.

Chemical sprays, although they have a negative stigma with use on trees that bear fruit we eat, will also do the job. The antibiotic streptomycin is the most effective spray material for controlling fire blight. It will prevent but not control infections. Use streptomycin in Spring during bloom.

To completely ensure fire blight won't wreck your crop, consider planting tree varieties that are resistant to this disease. There are resistant apple, pear, crabapple, ornamental pear and pyracantha trees. Check with your local garden center to find out which varieties they carry are fire blight resistance.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is a professional tree service in the Chicagoland area.  We service the north shore, north suburbs and northwest suburbs of Chicago.  Trees "R" Us, Inc. has 4 certified arborists on staff ready to assess your plants and tree care needs in a timely manner.  Our services include tree trimming, pruning, stump grinding, emergency tree services, tree removal, cabling and bracing, fertilization and plant health care.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. can be contacted at 847-913-9069 or through our online forms at

Thanks for reading,

Saturday, August 9, 2014

August plant and tree care tips

August is upon us. It's hard to believe that the dog days of summer are already here.

August is a challenging time for the upkeep of your garden. many plants are on their way out, some need replacing, some need to be planted. Let's take a look at some of out top recommendations for August. 


When it comes to the August garden, plants and trees, irrigation is the main thing you have to do on a regular basis. The best way to water can vary greatly depending on the garden situation. For this reason, it is best to watch your plants closely and regularly feel the soil with your fingertips to check for dryness. Obviously wilting plants need water, but also check the soil and be careful not to overwater and allow the top layer of soil to dry between waterings.

Plant Groundcover

It's also time to get a new groundcover started, whether in a recently cleared area or as a lawn replacement. As with any new planting, make sure it is kept moist until autumn rains set in.

Check for Bugs

You should also take special care to monitor newly planted trees and shrubs for insects or disease. Succulent new growth is often the first area to be attacked by insects. Aphids can be hosed off foliage. Many sucking, piercing, and chewing insects will finish feeding this month, leaving cosmetic damage but nothing serious enough to warrant chemical control.

Prune and Trim

August is a great time to prune hedges. Shrubs grows faster at the top. To counteract top-heavy growth, clip a hedge slightly wider at the base, slanting it in at the top. 

Tree triming is generally not advised this month, with the exception of shrubs that have just flowered. They are pruned immediately following their flowering.

This is the month that annuals need to get trimmed. Cut off dead flowers to encourage blooming. If heat causes annuals to stop producing flowers, cut the plants back by half and continue to water and fertilize; most kinds will perk up and start blooming again when the weather cools.

Add Color

Pop in some late-summer color: Many perennials reach their bloom peak in spring and summer, but there are plenty of flowers that will carry a border into later summer and fall. Choices include aster, cape fuchsia, chrysanthemum, coreopsis, daylily, gaillardia, gaura, Japanese anemone, lavatera, Nemesia fruiticans, rudbeckia, Russian sage, salvia, and summer phlox. Before shopping, check to see which plants are best adapted to your climate.

Eat Your Veggies

August also means you'll have more veggies! Early ripening tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers are starting to produce. The first of the garden beans are probably ready as well. August is a great time for starting fall batches of many cole crops and, in later August, greens and a new batch of peas. Cole crops include broccoli, cabbages, Brussels sprouts, etc. Short season root crops such as radishes and scallions can be started now, as well. When harvesting lettuces, cut every other plant to the ground. This practice allows each lettuce head to develop fully.

The best quality and best tasting salad greens come from plants that were watered frequently and lightly rather than infrequently but deeply. This advice is the exact opposite to what is recommended for watering trees, shrubs, perennials, grass, and other plants.


For your fruit trees this is the last month we recommend summer fertilizer. Sometimes it is appropriate to do some pruning of certain fruit trees in August, especially water sprout removal. These are the very vertical growths, frequent on apples, which shoot up after the fruit has started setting in spring. They are usually not desirable as future branches and can be removed. Major pruning can sometimes be done but is usually put off until winter.

On this flip side, roses and other repeat blooming shrubs can benefit from continued fertilizing if you have not done so recently. As most rose growers know, they usually benefit from continued use of fungicide to keep that black spot and mildew in check as well.

Lots to consider here. Hope this helps you keep your trees, shrubs and gardens in tip-top shape. If it seems like too much to monitor call us or your local tree service with a plant health care division. The Trees "R" Us, Inc. plant health care is a tree, plant and shrub maintenance program that will allow you to have more time to devote to your family rather than your lawn and garden. We fertilize, protect and care for your plants giving you timely advice and proper maintenance. Check out our plant health care program on our website at

At Trees "R" Us, Inc. we take pride in not only our professional tree care services, but also educating our customers. It is through education that we really save trees and help the environment. We hope you found this post informative and educational.

Trees "R" Us, Inc. is a professional tree service for the Chicago's North Shore, North and Northwest suburbs. Tree trimming, tree removal, stump grinding, fertilizations, tree disease treatments and prevention as well as plant health care are just a few of our high quality, professional services. Contact us today for a free analysis or quote at or at 847-913-9069.

Thanks for reading,
Jenni, President and CEO, Trees "R" Us, Inc.