Tree Surgeon Salaries in the UK

Tree Surgeon Salaries in the UK

Tree Surgeon Salaries in the UK

Tree surgery is a vital and rewarding profession in the UK, combining physical work with the responsibility of maintaining and caring for trees. If you’re considering a career as a tree surgeon, you might be curious about the potential earnings in this field. This guide provides an in-depth look at tree surgeon salaries in the UK, factors influencing earnings, and tips for maximizing your potential income.

Understanding the Role of a Tree Surgeon

A tree surgeon, also known as an arborist, is a professional responsible for the planting, pruning, and maintenance of trees. Their work is crucial for the health of trees and the safety of surrounding areas, making it a job that requires both skill and expertise. Typical tasks include tree felling, crown lifting, and dealing with tree diseases, often requiring the use of specialized equipment and climbing techniques.

Average Tree Surgeon Salary in the UK

Tree surgeon salaries in the UK can vary widely based on experience, qualifications, location, and the type of work involved. Here’s a general overview of what you can expect:

  • Entry-Level Tree Surgeon: £18,000 – £25,000 per year
  • Experienced Tree Surgeon: £25,000 – £35,000 per year
  • Senior or Specialist Tree Surgeon: £35,000 – £50,000 per year
  • Self-Employed or Business Owner: Potentially higher, depending on the volume and type of work.

Factors Affecting Tree Surgeon Salaries

Several factors can influence how much a tree surgeon earns:

  • Experience and Qualifications: Higher qualifications, such as the National Proficiency Tests Council (NPTC) certifications, can lead to higher wages. More experienced tree surgeons typically command higher salaries due to their skills and expertise.
  • Location: Salaries tend to be higher in London and the South East due to the higher cost of living and demand for tree surgery services. Rural areas may offer lower wages, but the cost of living is also typically lower.
  • Specialization: Specializing in certain areas, such as tree health assessments or advanced climbing techniques, can lead to higher pay. Arborists with expertise in dealing with hazardous trees or those who provide consultancy services may earn more.
  • Type of Employment: Self-employed tree surgeons or those running their own businesses have the potential to earn more, but this also comes with the responsibility of managing business expenses and acquiring clients. Working for a larger company may offer more stable earnings and benefits.
  • Industry Demand: Tree surgeons are in higher demand during certain times of the year, such as spring and summer, which can affect earnings. Urban areas with ongoing development and landscaping projects may offer more opportunities for higher wages.
  • Additional Skills and Certifications: Holding additional certifications, such as first aid training or licenses for operating specific machinery, can enhance earning potential. Skills in related areas, such as landscaping or garden maintenance, can also open up additional revenue streams.
Tree Surgeon Salaries in the UK
Tree Surgeon Salaries in the UK

Maximizing Your Earnings as a Tree Surgeon

If you’re looking to maximize your earnings as a tree surgeon in the UK, consider the following strategies:

  • Invest in Your Education: Pursue advanced qualifications and certifications to increase your skill set and marketability. Stay updated with the latest techniques and safety standards in tree surgery.
  • Gain Diverse Experience: Work on a variety of projects to gain broad experience and make yourself more attractive to potential employers or clients. Specialize in niche areas where demand may be higher, such as tree risk assessments or large tree removal.
  • Network and Build Relationships: Connect with other professionals in the industry to learn about job opportunities and stay informed about market trends. Establish good relationships with clients to encourage repeat business and referrals.
  • Consider Self-Employment: Starting your own tree surgery business can provide greater earning potential and flexibility. Be prepared to handle the business aspects, including marketing, client acquisition, and financial management.
  • Expand Your Services: Offer additional services, such as tree health inspections, emergency tree work, or landscaping, to increase your income. Diversify your client base to include residential, commercial, and municipal contracts.
  • Location Flexibility: Be open to working in different regions where demand and pay may be higher. Consider relocating to areas with a higher cost of living where tree surgery services command higher fees.

The Future of Tree Surgery Careers in the UK

The demand for tree surgery services is expected to remain strong due to the need for urban tree management, land development, and environmental conservation. As awareness of the importance of tree health grows, so does the need for skilled tree surgeons. This presents excellent opportunities for those entering the field to build a rewarding and financially viable career.


Tree surgery is a fulfilling career that offers the opportunity to work outdoors, make a positive impact on the environment, and earn a competitive salary. By understanding the factors that influence earnings and taking proactive steps to enhance your skills and marketability, you can maximize your potential income as a tree surgeon in the UK.

Ready to take the next step in your tree surgery career? At Ground Up Training, we offer a range of courses and qualifications to help you succeed in the industry. Contact us today to learn more about how we can support your professional development and help you achieve your career goals.