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Urban & Community Forestry
Defining the "Tree Professional"

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Consulting Arborist
Membership in the American Society of Consulting Arborists (ASCA). Signifies high degree of professionalism in arboriculture field. Requires academic foundation, extensive work experience, professional affiliations, and references. Members act as expert witnesses and loss evaluators. For more information, contact the American Society of Consulting Arborists at 301-947-0483.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Certified Arborist
Certification by International Society of Arboriculture. Four-hour exam. Requires broad knowledge of trees and all aspects of tree management and care. Requires three years of experience, no college training. For more information, contact the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture at 503-874-8263.
 
 
 

Certified Tree Worker
Certification by International Society of Arboriculture. Two-part exam: an oral test on all aspects of tree care, and a practical exam covering climbing skills and aerial rescue procedures. Requires 18 months of experience, no college training. For more information, contact the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture at 503-874-8263.
 
 
 

Ornamental Horticulturist
BS, MS, or PhD in ornamental horticulture, the academic degree that gives the most specific foundation for an arborist in an urban area. For more information, contact Chemeketa Community College, Clackamas Community College, Linn-Benton Community College or Oregon State University, which are among the colleges and universities that offer horticulture programs in Oregon.

 
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Certified Nursery Professional
Certification by the Oregon Association of Nurserymen and geared towards people serving the public in retail nurseries. Comprehensive exams cover specific areas such as irrigation, pest control and turf grass. Certified nursery professionals are qualified to advise clients on plant selection and problem diagnosis. For more information, contact the Oregon Association of Nurserymen at 503-682-5089.
 
 
 

Forester
BS in forestry. Focuses on management of forests and wildlands to produce wood, water, forage, recreational opportunities and wildlife. Graduates are frequently employed by timber companies or federal, state or local forestry or park departments. For more information, contact Oregon State University, College of Forestry, at 503-737-2221.
 
 
 

Urban Forester
BS in forestry, ornamental horticulture or related science; specialization in urban forestry through education or experience. There is no license or certification. Generally defined as a person who manages an urban forest, such as a city arborist or city forester. For more information, contact the Oregon Department of Forestry, Urban and Community Forestry Assistance Program, at 503-945-7391.
 
 
 

Landscape Architect
BS in landscape architecture; state license. Very difficult. eomprehensive, several-day exam covers all areas of landscape planning, design and construction. Difficult to even qualify for exam; requires degree and apprenticeship. License requires little knowledge of mature tree care. For more information, contact the Oregon Landscape Architecture Board at 503-378-4270.
   
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Landscape Contractor
State Landscape contractor's license. Requires licensing exam in areas such as sod lawns, tree planting and irrigation systems. Requires two years of experience, no college training. For more information, contact the State Landscape Contractors Board at 503-986-6561.
 
 
 

Tree Service Contractor
Licensed through the State Construction Contractors Board, which has insurance and bonding requirements and standards for business practices. Does not require demonstrated knowledge of plants or trees. For more information, contact the State Construction Contractors Board at 503-378-4621.
 
 
 

Master Gardener
Certification by OSU Extension Service. Program focuses on plants, soils and gardening techniques. Not highly technical. Master gardeners are community volunteers who give advice on anything pertaining to the home gardener. They staff a phone line for call-ins in some counties, and give lectures to schools, garden clubs and other groups. For more information, contact the OSU Extension Service at 503-725-2000.

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