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what is the value of a 100 foot cottonwood tree

Customer Question

what is the value of a 100 foot cottonwood tree?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Landscaping
Expert:  Arborist1627 replied 5 years ago.

Arborist1627 : Greetings!
Arborist1627 : I'm in the middle of a project right now, but I will follow up shortly.
Arborist1627 : How many feet in diameter is your tree at 4.5 feet tall?
Arborist1627 : Is this tree near your house or out in an open field? Does it have any major defects? Thanks in advance!
Arborist1627 : Also, do you want it appraised for the value it adds to the landscape or for its lumber value?



The tree is about 50 feet from our house, two others are about 30 feet from the house. It has about a 3 feet diameter. They are beautiful trees that provided great shade on our property. We are looking for a value because our lawn service used a product that killed the tree and we would like to know the value we should be reimbursed for its loss.


Thanks so much for your help

Arborist1627 :

Hello again! I am still in the middle of a project, but I will have a very detailed answer for you by the end of the night. Thanks and talk to you soon!

Arborist1627 :


Arborist1627 :

Ok, so here's how the appraisal process works: first we figure out the per-square-inch cost of a replacement tree (a replacement tree of decent size would cost around 450 dollars. The per-square-inch trunk cost would be about $35 dollars per square inch. We then take the size of your tree and calculate the square-inch size of the trunk. After this, we then discount this value by the species rating of the tree according to Purdue University (Purdue ranks cottonwoods as a 40%); the placement of the tree (if it is in your yard, then it is around 90% on average); and health of the tree. If your cottonwood is that large, then it is probably in need or some sort of pruning, has some structural defects, etc. A good average number for your species of tree given its age is around 70%. With that being said, here's the appraisal:

Arborist1627 :

Appraisal of this cottonwood (Populus sp.) was determined by use of the formula method shown below. This method of calculating tree value was adopted by the Council of Tree and Landscape Appraisers in conjunction with the A.A.N., A.S.C.A., A.L.C.A., I.S.A., and N.A.A. This is the most accepted method of calculation available today. Replacement cost used in the formula was arrived at by checking with several local wholesale suppliers and adding in typical markup and installation costs. Species rating was arrived at by consulting information gathered by local universities including Purdue. Condition rating was determined by calculating the sum of rating scores for roots, trunk, scaffold branches, smaller branches, and foliage. Location rating was a product of this plant's site, contribution, and placement scores.

Trunk Formula Method Form

1. Replacement Cost: $450

2. Basic Price

A. Installed Cost $450

B. Replacement Tree Trunk Area 13" sq.

C. Divide Cost by Line B $34.62 per sq. in.

3. Determine Difference in Trunk Areas

A. Trunk Area of Existing Tree 1017.16" sq.

B. Replacement Tree 13" sq.

C. Subtract Line B from Line A 1004.16" sq.

4. Multiply Basic Price by Area Differences $34770.94

5. Adjust for Species Rating 40% $13908

6. Basic Value Equals Line 1 + Line 5 $14358

7. Adjust for Condition 70% $10050

8. Adjust for Location 90% $9045

9. Appraised Value $9045


Arborist1627 :

Obviously the value of this tree will go up or down depending on its health rating as the species rating and location rating are fairly constant numbers.

Arborist1627 :

I hope this helps. This a rough number since I was not able to assess the tree in person. However, even if the tree was in very poor health (20%), it would still be worth $2580. Let me know if you have any further questions. If you are satisfied with my answer, be sure to formally accept it by pressing the "accept" button. Thanks for the opportunity to help!

Arborist1627 :

George C. Murray ISA-certified arborist #IN-3297A

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