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Contractor won't replace spruce trees.

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by sbye, Oct 5, 2003.

  1. sbye

    sbye LawnSite Member
    Posts: 1


    I had some spruce trees planted last year and early this spring a couple of branches were orange in color. I called the contractor out to look at them and he said to get them fertilized and treated because they could be sick. I did not put bark around the bottom of the spruce trees before the winter came like the contactor advised me to do.
    I didn't get the trees treated this spring when the conctractor told me to because I felt this is the contractors responsibility. Even though I didn't put bark underneath the trees I feel this has nothing to do with the problem. I waited this whole summer to see what would happen to the trees they all eventually ended up dying. I have pictures of what the trees looked like in the spring. Should he replace these trees for nothing. I didn't get a warranty from him. He told me he would replace the trees but I would have to pay labor and delivery fees for the plants. I feel I shouldn't pay nothing. He said I should have barked the trees before winter and treated them in the spring like he told me to do. Is there someone that I can get a non-biased opinion and use their opinion in case I have to take this to court. Thanks.

    I can submit pics to you for an opinion. Any advice would be helpful.
  2. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    First problem:

    "I did not put bark around the bottom of the spruce trees before the winter came like the contactor advised me to do".

    Second problem:

    "I didn't get the trees treated this spring when the conctractor told me to"

    Third problem:

    "I waited this whole summer to see what would happen to the trees"

    Come on, are you serious?
  3. Grassmechanic

    Grassmechanic LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,697

    Evergreens do not go dormant like diciduous trees. Even after the ground freezes they are still producing food and growing roots, albiet at a slower pace than in the summer. To help insure their survival, mulch and fertilizer need to be applied, especially during their first year after planting. It sounds as if what happened to your trees is that they died of dessication during the Winter. If you failed to follow his instructions to mulch and fertilize and you had no warranty, I would say you are out of luck. If he made a good-faith offer to replace the trees but you had to pay for labor and transportation, then you should take him up on it. If he replants for you, get a warranty, follow his instructions, and use an anti-dessicant to help prevent them from drying out. I know this is probably not the answer you'd like to here, but I'm sure many of the professionals on this board will concur. Homeowners have to take some responsibility after we leave their property, warranty or not.
  4. Ground Master

    Ground Master LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 505

    did you water them regularly
  5. Catcher

    Catcher LawnSite Member
    Posts: 166

    I agree with GoGetter,

    did you do anything the contractor advised you to do?
  6. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Posts: 4,205

    ^ What GrassMechanic said.
  7. A1 Lawn@Landscapes

    A1 Lawn@Landscapes LawnSite Member
    Posts: 220

    You should have followed directions. The contractor could and should just walk away. Whatever you get you do not deserve.
  8. MOlawnman

    MOlawnman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 161

    I agree with everyone else here. You need to follow directions. I would also tell you that you are out of luck!!
  9. Floridalandcare

    Floridalandcare LawnSite Senior Member
    from Tampa
    Posts: 314

    That is the only reason why I only guarentee our workmanship . If I put a plant in the ground for you, I guarentee you that it was installed the best possible way . From there its your responsibility alone to care for the plant. I will not guarentee the plant at all , but thats to an extent , I have as Im sure many other LCOs have installed a hedgerow where 1 out of 100 plants just die . I will replace that plant no questions asked .But dont call me and say 5 plants are dead , and i get there and they were not fertalized , properly watered or covered with fungus .
    People just don realize that when a shrub gets yanked out of its pot and the root ball broken up thats its very stressfull to the plant , its not an issue of just planting it, it has to be cared for and nurtured ,once its established it will pretty much do its own thing then.
    In my opinion you are truly at fault , he told you what to do and you ignored him . Your loss, not his.
  10. Rebel7695

    Rebel7695 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    I agree with everyone here.. the contractor is being generous enough by planting it at cost more or less. Its like having a new motor installed, the mechanic will tell you not to go over 55 for like 500 miles or so, if the engine blows and the mechanic takes it apart and can prove that you had been driving it at 70 mph, you are at fault not the mechanic.. my point is that people will listen to other "professionals" but not lawn care professionals. The truth is that we probably know more about our profession than any mechanic knows about his. We live and breathe this stuff, day in day out.

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