Royce’s Tree Service (RTS) offers a comprehensive range of services tailored to the client’s needs, including, but not limited to:

Plant Health Care (PHC)

PHC is a holistic approach to tree care, where the objective is to manage a tree’s health, structure, and appearance within the expectations of the client. Let RTS’ science-based approach take care of all your PHC needs.


  • Hemlock Woolly Adelgid (HWA) – a small, invasive insect that feeds on sap drawn from the tree’s needles; large numbers severely weaken and eventually kill the tree; decimating the eastern hemlock and Carolina hemlock in WNC
  • Scales – small, soft or armored insects that feed on sap drawn from the tree’s foliage; a heavy infestation may severely weaken and eventually kill the tree
  • Anthracnose – a general term used to describe fungal diseases that result in a wide range of symptoms, including leaf spots, blotches, and/or distortion
  • Bark beetles – typically attack trees (usually conifers) that are stressed and/or in decline; feed on the vascular tissue underneath the bark; some species also introduce blue-stain fungi that cause further decline
  • Canker – a localized area of diseased tissue, which is often circular, darkened, and/or bleeding sap; usually fungal in origin
  • Weevils – small beetles that possess conspicuous snouts; feed on the vascular tissue underneath the bark and/or foliage; large numbers may severely weaken and eventually kill the tree
  • Blights – rapid and complete chlorosis (yellowing of foliage), browning, and then death of tree tissues such as leaves, shoots, and/or branches
  • Borers – burrowing insects that feed on the vascular tissue underneath the bark and/or foliage; high populations severely weaken and eventually kill the tree; Emerald Ash Borer is a well-known example that’s now in WNC
  • Caterpillars – voracious feeders that can severely defoliate a tree while producing large amounts of obnoxious fecal droppings
  • Lace bugs – small, winged insects that feed on sap drawn from the tree’s foliage; feeding from large infestations causes a blotched and/or spotted appearance (stippling) on the upper leaf surface and may result in early leaf drop
  • Mites – microscopic arachnids that feed on sap drawn from the tree’s foliage; causes the foliage to take on a speckled appearance; severe infestations cause foliage browning and/or premature foliage drop
  • Needle cast – a fungal disease that causes browning of interior needles; infected needles eventually drop from the tree, leaving dead and/or mostly barren branches
  • Powdery mildew – a fungal disease that appears as white-gray powdery spots or patches on leaves, shoots, and/or branches
  • Construction damage – may result in a buried root flare, soil compaction, grade changes, soil contaminants, and/or direct physical trauma to the tree itself
  • Buried root flare – a tree’s root flare is not adapted to being covered by soil and/or mulch; promotes decay, compromised phloem, soil-borne infection, insect entry, and/or girdling roots
  • Soil compaction – a reduction in soil pore space; may severely limit the ability of a tree’s roots to obtain the oxygen, water, and nutrients necessary for good health
  • Girdling roots – malformed roots that encircle the trunk at or below the soil level; may severely restrict the flow of water and nutrients between the roots and the crown
  • Macro and micronutrient deficiencies – manifest themselves in a variety of symptoms
  • Drought stress – causes wilting, reduced growth, scorched foliage, chlorosis (yellowing of foliage), premature foliage drop, tip dieback, and/or root death; complete tree death is also a distinct possibility in severe cases


  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM) – an ecosystem-based strategy that focuses on long-term prevention of pests or their damage through a combination of techniques such as biological control, habitat manipulation, modification of cultural practices, and use of resistant varieties
  • Sasajiscymnus tsugae (Sasi) – predator beetles that offer a potential long-term biological control option for HWA; typically used in conjunction with other control methods
  • Horticultural oils – Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) and EPA Reduced Risk options available
  • Insecticides – OMRI and EPA Reduced Risk options available
  • Fungicides – OMRI and EPA Reduced Risk options available
  • Herbicides – OMRI and EPA Reduced Risk options available
  • Tree growth regulator – gently slows the growth of the tree, allowing it to reallocate some of its energy from canopy growth into defense chemicals, fibrous root production, and stored energy
  • Invasive species surveillance – involves setting a trap containing a pheromone attractant to detect and monitor for invasive species like Emerald Ash Borer
  • Supplemental mulching – mimics the natural detritus present in a forest environment by moderating soil temperatures, conserving soil moisture, reducing soil compaction, suppressing competition, and releasing essential nutrients
  • Root flare excavation – the use of a supersonic air jet (air shovel) to safely expose a buried root flare; reduces the potential for decay, insect entry, and/or fungal infection
  • Soil decompaction – the use of a supersonic air jet (air shovel) to safely alleviate soil compaction within the critical root zone; restores pore space to promote overall tree vitality
  • Soil amendment – the use of a supersonic air jet (air shovel) to amend appropriate materials into the critical root zone to promote overall tree vitality; may include organic matter, sand, fertilizer, biochar, and/or helpful inoculate
  • Root pruning – the removal of girdling and/or problem roots after safe exposure and dissection via a supersonic air jet (air shovel)
  • Soil analysis – used to determine nutrient levels, pH, texture, percent organic matter, and cation exchange capacity
  • Fertilization – a prescription soil treatment based on the results of the soil analysis and needs of the target specimen(s)
  • Supplemental watering – maintaining adequate amounts of water in the root zone is crucial for overall tree health; ideally, the soil in the critical root zone should be slowly, but fully moistened to a depth of 10″ or so during each watering; one of the best ways to accomplish this is to encircle the tree with a soaker hose out to the dripline

Complex removals

  • The location of the tree in proximity to valuable structures/property, the condition of the tree, and its size, among other factors, all contribute to the difficulty of the removal.
  • Having removed hundreds of difficult trees during his tenure at the 8000-acre Biltmore Estate, RTS adheres to the highest industry standards to ensure a safe removal.

Stump grinding

  • Specialized machinery converts the stump to an eco-friendly mulch.
  • Prevents tree regrowth, eliminates a breeding area for pests, and improves landscape aesthetics.

Forestry mulching

  • An eco-friendly process whereby unwanted biomass is ground into mulch on site and in place by specialized mobile machinery.
  • Excellent for lot clearing, invasive removal, forest reclamation, etc.


Many different types of tree pruning exist. RTS uses the most current ISA-approved techniques to achieve your pruning goals – whatever they may be.

  • Viewshed management
  • Crown cleaning/reduction
  • Structural pruning
  • Elevation pruning
  • Restorative

Crane-assisted removals

  • Sometimes the only way to safely and effectively remove a tree is with a crane.
  • RTS has removed many trees using this approach and has established working relationships with several local crane companies.

Lightning protection systems

By providing an alternate path for the lightning strike, electricity is conducted into the ground directly via copper cable, leaving your tree unscathed.

Cabling, bracing, and dynamic support systems

  • A “risky” tree or limb does not always have to be removed.
  • Thankfully, a number of options exist to help stabilize and shore up a suspect specimen.
  • When applicable, RTS favors the use of the Cobra® dynamic support system due to its many advantages.

Tree risk assessments

Not sure if a tree poses a risk to life and/or property, RTS is Tree Risk Assessment Qualified through the ISA and can assess that tree for you.


  • More in-depth than estimates.
  • Include dedicated face-time with Royce and/or the PHC Director, along with a written summary.
  • Examples: Tree inventory, tree valuation and appraisal, construction preservation plan, comprehensive PHC plan.
  • Also helpful when the client is not sure what to do or needs help deciding between multiple options.


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