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Posted: Jul 30, 2009  11:07

Climbing High To Serve Community


When Doug Dirks burned out after 15 years in the logging industry, he knew he wanted to continue to work outdoors. A serendipitous conversation with his neighbor, Mike Richardson, lead to the perfect solution: Mike was interested in selling his business and Doug realized that buying Mike's business while retaining Mike in the company would be the best of all possible worlds for both of them.

Thus, Richardson & Dirks Tree Care was reinvented in the autumn of 2008.

Serving the area since 1985, Richardson Tree Care was a small family business with a reputation for doing things right. Mike and his son, Shawn, worked together for many years.

With Mike's formal education-he holds a BS in Forestry and is an ISA certified Arborist-plus his quarter of a century of experience in the industry, he is most likely one of the most knowledgeable "tree guys" in the county, if not the whole region. Doug has a significant amount of knowledge from his years as a logger and a hook tender as well. He recently completed an arborists' climbers course and will get his pesticide applicators license and his certification as a General Arborist within the next few months.

Since loggers work a four-day work week, Doug spent every Friday working with Mike during the transitional stages of the business. Doug's last day as a logger was March 1, 2009.

Shawn's work in the business has also been instrumental in the successful transition from a two-man team to a three-man team. With all his experience and years of working with Mike, he is very knowledgeable as well. Currently, he is the ground man and does many other tasks that make the business run smoothly.

According to Lisa Dirks, Doug's wife and business partner, Doug is very happy about the transformation of his career. She said that Doug really likes working with the customers and gets a great deal of satisfaction out of doing a job well.

"We really value Mike," said Lisa. "He has built such a clientele and we wanted everybody to know that he is still involved in the business. We're not just starting from scratch."

Richardson & Dirks Tree Care offers crown thinning, tree trimming of every sort, removals, artistic view clearing, hazard mitigation, cabling, brush chipping, pruning, mulching, stump grinding, fire prevention and work that requires the use of a bucket truck. The crew can also assess disease issues and make recommendations to the landowner. "Our intention is to evaluate each individual situation and inform the landowner of all possible solutions," said Lisa. "In this way, the landowner is able to make an informed final decision. Removal is not always the answer to a problem tree; we do try to save trees whenever possible. They beautify and enrich our lives throughout the year. Well-tended trees increase the financial value of real estate. They give us oxygen, cooling shade and filter air pollutants. A well-placed tree can deflect noise, wind and unwanted views as well as protect soil from erosion. Trees are a great blessing to homeowners. In most cases we can reduce whatever hazard or annoyance a tree presents, allowing the owner to keep its benefits."

Richardson & Dirks Tree Care offers consultations and free estimates, too.

"We're a small town business that cares about our community," Lisa emphasized. "Both Doug and I were raised in Bonners Ferry and Mike has been here for a long time. Don't be afraid to call for a consultation or to get an estimate. I feel comfortable saying that we are the longest operating, best equipped and most knowledgeable tree care service in the county."

Contact Richardson & Dirks Tree Care at 267-9109 or 290-3180.


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