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A cut above …

Company offers a wide variety of services to area residents

By Kevin Mertens - Staff Writer | Apr 25, 2021

Davis Outdoor Services has officially been in business for one year. Pictured (l to r) are Roger Davis, Cole Richardson and Ryan Foster. All three gentlemen work for Blue Earth Light & Power during the week. They spend their weekends trimming or removing trees for people in the surrounding area.

Davis Outdoor Services may have only officially been in business since April of 2020, but one might say the enjoyment owner Roger Davis experiences in his work took root many years ago.

“When I was in my junior and senior year of high school, I worked for my uncle who owned Flying Squirrel Tree Service, which was located in Jackson,” Davis, who graduated from Lamberton High School in 1987, says. “That is where I first started learning the business.”

The business finds Davis working many Friday nights, Saturdays and even some Sundays cutting down or trimming trees and removing stumps. Davis Outdoor Services also is available for lawn mowing. When the weather gets cold and the white stuff falls to the ground, he has a crew who specializes in snow removal.

“We are fully insured,” Davis comments. “We make sure we take brush and logs to designated dump locations and follow the rules of each town we work in.”

The “we” he refers to is Cole Richardson and Ryan Foster.

“We all work for Blue Earth Light & Water during the week,” Davis explains. “I am a line superintendent and Cole and Ryan are journeymen linemen.”

Richardson says he also came into the tree care business with some experience.

“My father had a tree trimming business in Buffalo Center, Iowa,” Richardson shares.

They all have experience trimming trees for Blue Earth Light & Water.

“We do a great deal of our tree trimming during the winter months,” Richardson notes.

Foster is the new guy of the bunch and he already has 10 years of experience.

“Roger taught me how to trim trees,” Foster comments. “He has a great eye. He is an artist when it comes to making a tree look good.”

While a traditional artist might use a paint brush or pencils to create their works of art, the men of Davis Outdoor Services use chain saws.

“We have five chain saws with bars as short as 12 inches and as long as 41 inches,” Davis shares. “We also have a pole saw.”

And how do they know when a tree is properly trimmed?

“Roger says if it looks good enough to be in the front yard of his house then it is good enough,” Foster says.

As for cutting down and removing a tree, this trio of workers notes that task can be quite involved.

“Working in town or even out in the country, there is not always room to fell a tree. There may be buildings or other trees in the way,” Davis explains. “What we are able to do is keep trimming the tree until the trunk is short enough to have a safe place to fall.”

The one thing they are all happy to avoid is power lines.

“I like it when there is nothing in the way,” Richardson shares. “It is great when we do not have to work around power lines.”

It takes some special equipment to trim a tree. Davis Outdoor Services has two bucket trucks.

“I started with the small bucket truck three years ago and it has a working height of 38 feet,” Davis offers. “We purchased the other bucket truck in January. It has a working height of 60 feet. Another benefit of us working for Blue Earth Light & Power is each one of us is trained for bucket rescue.”

The group say their experience working together helps them operate more safely and efficiently.

“We work well together,” Foster states. “We get along, we all know what to do. It is a routine.”

They say talking and communicating is a key to job safety.

“We always talk before we start a job and take note of any safety concerns we might see,” Richardson says. “Dead trees can be dangerous. We have to be aware of broken branches hanging above us.”

According to Davis, trimming and removing trees is only part of the job.

“We clean up and get rid of whatever the owner does not want,” Davis comments. “We have a Bobcat with grapple forks to pick up the tree limbs and logs. That machine replaces five people.”

Davis says they work in other towns, not just Blue Earth.

“We have done jobs in Frost, Winnebago, Truman, Bricelyn and Welcome,” he notes. “We provide free estimates and if there is ever a time when we do not feel it is a job we should do, we say so.”

Richardson shares they have had no problems staying busy.

“Work has really picked up,” he comments. “Our work speaks for us and we get a lot of repeat customers.”

Perhaps that is the key to their success.

“Like it was stated earlier, we work well together and Roger has an eye for detail,” Richardson says. “We like what we do and take pride in our work.”