The Davey Tree Expert Co. has acquired Nature First, a tree care residential/commercial company based near Santa Cruz, California.

Nature First’s approximately dozen employees provide tree pruning and removal, planting and diagnosis, and garden renovation to its clients in the San Jose/Santa Cruz area. Dick Scoppettone started the company in 2006, and will remain with the company during the transition.

“I am excited about the new direction we are heading,” he said. “I want to assure our clients that we will continue to provide reliable and exceptional service. Additionally, our clients can now benefit from comprehensive Plant Health Care services, including subsurface fertilization, pest and disease management, along with specialized prescription care for their trees and shrubs.”

Jim Stief, executive vice president, U.S. residential operations, adds,“Nature First clients also will now have access to the Davey Institute, an industry-leading diagnostic and research facility,” Stief said.

Stief stressed that Nature First employees would have the opportunity to grow as industry leaders. “We have no doubt they will benefit from Davey’s diversified service offerings, technology and equipment resources, research and development capability and of course the culture of employee ownership.”

The Santa Cruz office will be managed by Davey’s Travis Evans, an International Society of Arboriculture certified arborist and a lifelong resident of the community. Evans started with Davey in 2001 and has worked within the Davey Tree Surgery Company, Davey Resource Group and Davey’s residential/commercial operations.