How to Sell a Tree in Your Yard

Finding a Buyer for Single Trees

 

Although you may be able to market and sell your yard tree, you still have to attract a local timber buyer with trees that command a higher market value. To sell quality trees like grade oak, black walnut, paulownia, black cherry, or any other high-value tree in you area, it is mandatory for a buyer to be interested enough to make an offer. Remember that a tree's present and future value can also be determined by other non-harvest criteria including home energy savings, local air quality improvement, water runoff reduction and ​property value to name a few.

Keep this key requirement in mind. In order for a timber buyer to be interested in purchasing a yard tree, the tree or trees must have value in excess of the purchase cost to offset costs the timber buyer has to recover to bring equipment (log truck, skidder, and loader) to the property, cut the log, haul the log to a mill, pay the landowner for the tree and still make a profit off the end product. Just that simple. You also are subject to property damage that results from a tree removal.

It may be best to find a small portable sawmill owner that is equipped to take a single tree down. They make their money finding single living or dead high-value trees in tight spaces, sawing the lumber to specifications attractive to woodworkers and turners.

I have written this feature about the practicality of selling a tree in your yard and listed certain conditions needed to attract a sale. Casey Trees and Davey Tree Expert Company offers an excellent calculator, based on data collected by the Center for Urban Forest Research and is linked below:

Photo by Jane Kirkland, "Take a Tree Walk"