Established in 2008.

Frequently Asked Questions

River City Tree Services

Professional tree services performed by ISA Certified Arborists.

Frequently Asked Questions

Insurance provides the peace of mind that customers expect. With our policy you are protected as shown below.

River City Insurance Cert – Click Here


Our ISA-Certified Arborist has over 20 years of experience. In fact all of our arborists are seasoned tree workers.

What is a “Certified Arborist?”

The Certified Arborist credential identifies professional arborists who have a minimum of three years’ full-time experience working in the professional tree care industry and who have passed an extensive examination covering all facets of arboriculture.

The Certified Arborist examination has 200 questions on tree biology, tree identification and selection, tree-soil-water relations, tree nutrition and fertilization, tree planting and establishment, pruning concepts and techniques, cabling, bracing and lightning protection, problem diagnosis and management, tree preservation on construction sites, climbing and safe work practices, and tree risk assessment.

We have a list of fine references and we’d like to thank the following great customers for supporting the good work of our crews!


“Great job on Humphrey Street. I’d like you to assess all the trees on either side of the parking pad at my rental house as well.”
Christie V., St. Louis, MO


“I want to thank you so much for a wonderful job in trimming the trees at my house and my mom’s. Your personnel was on time, finished the jobs in a very reasonable amount of time, and clean up was great“
Sue J., Spanish Lake, MO


“They were eager to do the work and did it very well.”
Nick and Betty E., Arnold, MO


“They removed a tree & leveled the backyard. The workmanship was good, no complaints.”
Renuka D., Grover, MO


“I probably should have used them. They got back to me quickly and seemed anxious to do the work. I unfortunately hired someone else who was not nearly as professional.”
Anonymous, from ServiceMagic


The following is a Fall color guide which lists trees under their Fall leaf color. We hope this guide will prove helpful in your landscape planning.


Ash, Green – Fraxinus pennsylvanica
Birch, River – Betula nigra
Bladdernut, American – Staphylea trifolice
Buckeye, Ohio – Aesculus glabra
Cherry, Black – Prunus serotina
Elm, American – Ulmus americana
Hackberry – Celtis occidentalis
Hazelnut – Corylus americana
Hickory, Bitternut – Carya cordiformis
Honeylocust – Gleditsia triacanthas
Maple, Silver – Acer saccharinum
Poplar – Populus deltoides
Redbud, Eastern – Cercis Canadensis
Walnut, Black – Juglans nigra


Ironwood – Ostrya virginiana


Maple, Black – Acer nigrum


Maple, Red – Acer rubrum
Maple, Sugar – Acer saccharum
Musclewood – Carpinus caroliniana
Serviceberry, Downy – Amelanchier arborea


Oak, Northern Red – Quercus rubra
Hawthorn, Downy – Crataegus mollis
Sumac, Smooth – Rhus glabra


Dogwood – Cornus florida


Ash, White – Fraxinus Americana


Hickory, Shagbark – Carya ovata


Persimmon – Diospyros virginiana


Sassafras – Sassafras albidum


Oak, Post – Quercus stellata
Oak, White – Quercus alba


Basswood, American – Tilia Americana
Sycamore, American – Platanus occidentalis





In addition to this Fall Color Guide, click here to see WHY leaves change to their respective colors.

Simple sugars feed a tree in the process known as photosynthesis.“Chlorophyll” is the agent for food making in green plants.

Yellow and orange “carotenoids” are also present in the leaves during warm weather, but they are “masked” by the greater amounts of the green pigments. Cool temperatures stop the production of green pigments and cause chlorophyll to degrade. The yellow and orange pigments are then “unmasked” as the green pigments disappear.

Red and purple autumn colors come from another group of cell pigments called “anthocyanins,” (Persimmons, dogwoods, maples, sumacs, sweetgums and ashes) stimulated by lower temperatures and high light levels. Mild drought conditions stimulate production of the red pigments. Acidic sap also contributes.Alkaline sap causes purple coloration.Carotenoids and anthocyanins often combine in leaves to give the deep oranges, fiery reds, and bronzes typical of many hardwood species.

Brown autumn leaf color of oaks and beech is due to the presence of the brownish tannin compounds in combination with the carotenoids.

Several environmental factors can diminish the fall foliage colors:

1. Very warm weather conditions.
2. An early frost.
3. Long periods of wet, cloudy weather in fall.

In a nutshell, the conditions that create the brightest fall colors are:

1. Cool but not freezing temperatures
2. Mild late-season drought
3. Sunny days

Completely Removed or Just Trimmed?


Here are some signs that your tree may need to be completely removed:


1. Mushrooms are growing near the base of the tree.

2. Areas of rotten wood or cavities.

3. Noticeable change in the leaning of a tree.

4. Excessive leaf loss or dead leaves (see topping below).


A tree derives its nutrients from the leaf canopy. When over 50% of the canopy is “topped,” the tree will starve and regrowth will usually be spindly and weak. At this point, it’s probably going to fail and might as well be removed.


If a dead or dying tree poses an immediate threat to people or property, it could be cheaper to remove it before more costly damage is done.

Utility companies maintain trees for free in the alleys and easements ONLY (pole to pole).


Trees under BACKYARD lines (pole to house) are the property owner’s responsibility.


Utility companies will advise that you consult a tree service for these trees.

The answer depends on insurance coverage.


The problem?

Your deductible may be higher than the cost of tree trimming.


Although we don’t have all the answers, here are a few:




A. Your house – your homeowners insurance pays.

B. Your neighbor’s house – their homeowner’s insurance pays (if they have notified you that your tree is a threat, however, YOUR insurance pays).

C. Your car – IF you have comprehensive auto insurance, your auto insurance pays. Again, if you have notified the tree’s owner that it is a threat, their insurance may pay.


D. Your yard – For insurance to pay, the tree must have caused damage to an insured structure, blocked the driveway or blocked a ramp or walkway designed to assist the handicapped.


Always check with your individual insurance company for the most accurate answers.

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation, certain trees are prone to breakage.

While these fast-growing trees are popular, they are “highly susceptible to storm damage and shouldn’t be planted.”


These trees have brittle wood that is easily broken:


Silver Maple
Box Elder
Bradford Pear


If these trees are already planted in your landscape, pay close attention to their maintenance before the next storm.

Plant these LARGE trees 45 FEET from utility lines:

Shag Bark Hickory
Sugar Maple
Bur Oak
Northern Red Oak
White Pine
Norway Spruce
Black Walnut

Plant these MEDIUM TREES 35 FEET from utility lines:

Amur Cork Tree
Lacebark Elm
Goldenrain Tree, Panicle
Thornless Honeylocust
American Hornbeam
Japanese Pagoda
Red Pine

Plant these SMALL TREES 15 FEET from utility lines:

Flowering Crabapple
Flowering Dogwood
Japanese Maple
Amur Maple
Ivory Silk Lilac
Star Magnolia
Red Buckeye

Professional tree services performed by ISA Certified Arborists.

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