Mistletoes are commonly located in various trees, particularly oak trees. As parasitic plants, they can impact the well-being of your tree, so it’s advisable to remove them.

Mistletoe removal costs between $125 to $450 per plant/ instance in your tree. The cost will vary depending on the location of the mistle toes in your tree, accessibility, and tree size. If it is close to the ground and relatively easy to reach, the cost will be less than at the very top of a large tree.

There are a few factors to consider and we have broken them down below.

The cost of removing mistletoe from trees is usually between $45 to $75 per mistletoe plant. The exact cost of removing a mistletoe will depend on various factors such as;

  • Number of plants in your tree
  • Accessibility
  • Height of tree
  • Method used

1. Number of plants removed

The total cost of removing mistletoe will be affected by the actual number of mistletoe to be removed. The more mistletoe removed, the more labor required and the longer the work will take. For a few amounts of mistletoe, you can try removing it through a DIY job.

This is more cost-effective than hiring a mistletoe removal company. However, for an infestation of mistletoe on multiple branches and trees, hiring a professional may be the right call.

2. Accessibility

The accessibility of the mistletoe is very important when it comes to the total cost of removing mistletoe. This is because the harder a plant is to get to, the more equipment, labor, and time will be required to do the work.

Plants with easier access cost less to remove and can be done through a DIY job. You can create access to your mistletoe plant by trimming the branches of the host tree. This can be done a few weeks before the mistletoe is removed.

Accessibility of mistletoe

3. Height of the tree

The height of the tree the mistletoe is attached to is very important when determining the actual cost of removing mistletoe. This is because the higher the host tree is, the more difficult it is to remove the mistletoe.

This is because removing mistletoe from taller trees requires more equipment, and labor and is more time-consuming in comparison to shorter trees. Shorter trees allow for DIY mistletoe removal but taller trees do not have this option and require professionals to do the work, thereby costing more.

4. Methods used

If you call in a pro arborist to climb your tree and cut out the mistletoe by hand, this can cost $350 or more depending on the level of infestation. If you decide to go with a spray option and can access the mistletoes from the ground with an extension pole, the cost will be substantially less.

How to effectively get rid of or manage mistletoe in a tree?

If you decide to remove your mistletoe by yourself, here are a few ways to do so;

1. Choose mistletoe-resistant tree species

One of the most effective methods of managing mistletoe is to plant tree species that are resistant or moderately resistant to mistletoe. Trees like Modesto ash are especially susceptible to mistletoe infestation and should be avoided.

2. Treat on time

When treating existing trees, it is important to eradicate mistletoe before it produces seed and spreads to other limbs or trees. Mechanical control through pruning tree branches is the most effective method for mistletoe removal.

3. Make sure to treat all affected trees at once

Another way to effectively manage mistletoe is to remove or completely treat any surrounding infested trees to control and reduce the infestation of new trees where many new trees are being planted.

4. Use of chemicals

After the physical removal of the mistletoe, you can get rid of mistletoe using synthetic chemical growth regulators that provide a degree of temporary control. However, repeated applications are required for better outcomes.

5. Monitor your trees

Another way to manage mistletoe is to stay vigilant and remove new mistletoe clusters as they appear in the tree. This lessens their seed production ensuring the risk of infestation throughout trees is reduced.

What does mistletoe do to a tree?

What the mistletoe plants for trees is a popular question among tree owners. Well here are a few effects that mistletoe has on their host trees.

  1. Mistletoe uses haustoria to attach themselves to the food and water source of their host tree allowing them to derive their water and nutrients from their host.
  2. Mistletoe drains nutrients from their host and this can harm trees profoundly.
  3. A mistletoe infection could weaken the tree’s ability to fight off other parasites
  4. Mistletoe inhibits their host trees from properly compartmentalizing decay and wounds leading to long recovery time and health issues for the tree.
  5. Immature, weak trees with Mistletoe may become less vigorous, stunted, etc. if subjected to additional environmental stress from drought, extreme temperatures, root damage, insect infestation, or disease.
  6. While a mature and healthy tree will be able to tolerate a few mistletoe plants and suffer minimal harmful effects, younger trees heavily infested with mistletoe may experience severe effects and can even die if not controlled.
Ben McInerney
Author: Ben McInerney - Ben is a qualified arborist with 15 plus years of industry experience in Arboriculture. He ran a successful tree service before turning to writing and publishing. Ben is dedicated to providing users with the most accurate up-to-date information on everything trees.