Daniel Shepstone
Owner, Certified Arborist

Darlene Shepstone
Owner, Operations



ArborWorks Tree Service is a professionally run, family owned tree service. We employ certified arborists and tree workers who specialize in all tree care and maintance requirements.


Photo by Steve Mann/Hemera / Getty Images


All our Certified Arborists are up to date on the latest techniques in arboriculture.

MTCU Ministry of Training Colleges & Universities of Ontario


  • Pesticides Operator Licence (054447)
  • Health & Safety Ontario-Workplace Safety & Prevention Services (W.S.P.S.)
  • Health & Safety Ontario- Infrastructure Health & Safety Association (I.H.S.A.)
  • International Society of Arboriculture (I.S.A.) & Ontario Chapter (I.S.A.O.)
  • Ontario Commercial Arborist Association (O.C.A.A.)


  • International Society of Arboriculture (I.S.A.)-Certified Arborist (ON-0747AU)
  • International Society of Arboriculture (I.S.A.)-Certified Arborist/Utility Specialist (ON-0747AU)
  • International Society of Arboriculture (I.S.A.)-Certified Tree Risk Assessor (1303)
  • Ministry of Training Colleges & Universities-Arborist Certificate( 444A-389241)
  • Ministry of Training Colleges & Universities-Utility Arborist Certificate (444B-400153986)
  • Ministry of Training Colleges & Universities-Cutter Skidder Operator (A526013)
  • Ministry of Training Colleges & Universities-Chipper Operator (A555373)
  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM)-Certified Applicator for public Works (2084)
  • Ministry of the Environment-licence #035650-Landscape Exterminator (70-02-38420)
  • Ministry of the Environment-licence #035650-Industrial Vegetation Exterminator (70-03-47636)



  1. Check for membership in professional organizations
  2. Check for arborist certification
  3. Ask for proof of insurance and then phone the insurance company if you are not satisfied
  4. Get more than one estimate, unless you know and are comfortable with the company you are dealing with.
  5. Don't always accept the low bid. Evaluate work offered, skill, certifications, insurance, professionalism and price. An informed decision will protect you and your investment.
  6. Ensure your arborist will only perform accepted practices. Practices such as topping, removing an excessive amount of live wood, using climbing spikes on trees that are not being removed and removing or disfiguring living trees without just cause are unnecessary and could hinder or kill your tree(s).
  7. Get it in writing. Most reputable arborist companies have their clients sign a contract. Be sure to read the contract carefully. Don't be afraid to ask questions, such as:
    • When will the work be started and completed?
    • Who will be responsible for clean-up?
    • Is this the total price?
Photo by RainerPlendl/iStock / Getty Images


Topping is defined as the randomly cutting of branches in the tree canopy providing the illusion of quickly reducing the size or height of the tree. The practice of topping has been eliminated from Arboriculture practices for the past 20 years. Proper pruning techniques have replaced topping.

Six Good Reasons NOT to "Top" :

Tree Death: trees, some more than others do not tolerate topping, the excessive removal of foliage may cause the tree to die within one growing season.

Rapid New Growth: The most common misconception with topping is that "it keeps trees small", on the contrary topping promotes the rapid growth of new vigorous branches known as water sprouts. Water sprouts grow 4 to 10 times faster than normal limbs creating taller, structurally inferior branches than the original limbs.

Increased liability / Hazards: new sprouts develop at the edges of the cut branches. They are weakly attached and prone to failure with there increased growth rate. As the original stub cut rots, the sprouts will fail even sooner, increasing risk and liability.

Ugliness: topped trees are unnatural and unappealing; the apical dominance genetically programmed within the tree will never return to its original grace.

Pests and Disease: topped branches have large wounds that cannot seal nor defend the wound from insects and decay. Rot extends into the stem causing the stem to rot, increasing pest and disease which results in tree death or removal.

Cost: at first topping may appear to be the cheaper solution to reduce the size of your tree, trees that die from topping will need replaced, ugly trees reduce property values, dead stubs become liabilities, overall maintenance cost increase with time. Topping is more expensive in the end.