For nearly two decades, Joe Quaranta has made his living in the trees -- removing them when necessary and saving them when possible.

He owns Advanced Construction and Tree Removal, a New Milford-based business specializing in residential, commercial and industrial tree removal, land clearing, and vegetation management as well as tree maintenance.

Quaranta, who lives in Roxbury, also owns and operates Advanced Organics, a manufacturer and distributor of mulch products, soils and gravel.

The two entities are not mutually exclusive; in fact, the mulch products are created from the wood debris generated through tree removal.

"Since 2005, we have evolved into a company that recycles 100 percent of our byproducts into 12 different types of mulch products," said Quaranta during a recent interview at the company's Boardman Road site.

The ability to recycle the stumps and logs has had a positive impact on the environment, according to Quaranta, because what used to go into the landfill has instead been turned into something useful.

Advanced Construction not only mulches wood waste from its own jobs, it offers a full mobile screening, crushing and grinding service for contractors and homeowners.

The company also accepts clean wood chips, brush, wood and yard waste at its facility to be recycled into mulch used for landscaping.

"Trees go through several stages in order to become useable mulch," Quaranta explained.

He noted after the initial grinding of stumps and logs, the material undergoes a second grinding to make finer mulch.

Natural mulch is dyed with nitrous oxide to make various shades of red, black and dark brown.

Advanced Organics creates a variety of organic mulch products made from a mixture of woods, including Boardman Brown, Black and Dark Walnut (a blend of hardwoods and softwoods), Bright Red Mulch (a mixture of cedar and softwoods), Boardman Natural Compost (a blend of topsoil, organic fertilizer, and green waste fiber), and Agra-Mulch (a blend of wood fiber and organic fertilizer).

Quaranta said what sets his mulch apart from other commercially made mulches is a process it undergoes to kill any bacteria in the wood so the mulch is free of disease.

New Milford resident Richard Bolbrock, who is a big fan of Advanced Organics' Agra-Mulch, uses the product on all of his shrubs, trees and plants.

Bolbrock has had Advanced Construction prune and shape ornamental shrubs on his property.

"The service is excellent," he said, "and they are efficient and pleasant."

As a licensed arborist and forester, Quaranta is qualified to diagnose tree problems such as how to control insect pests on trees or how to control tree diseases.

Quaranta said instead of spraying the trees, a more environmentally friendly way to treat tree illnesses is to inject the roots.

"I know we are doing something good when we can prevent herbicide spraying," Quaranta said. "It's rewarding to me."

Quaranta successfully treated one of Bolbrock's Colorado blue spruce trees that was infected with spruce gall aphids.

"Mr. Quaranta is very knowledgeable in all areas and he clearly knows what he is talking about," Bolbrock noted.

Advanced Construction also performs environmentally friendly vegetation management, which involves everything from pruning or removal of trees near power lines along roads and highways, to keeping large power line corridors clear of interfering trees and other vegetation that could lead to outages.

The company has done tree work for several local municipalities.

Barbara Henry, first selectman of Roxbury, said for several years Advanced Construction has removed trees damaged by storms in the town.

"They've done a great job," Henry said.

In addition to tree removal, Advanced Construction performs environmental remediation and is currently involved in a unique project for DuPont Corp. at the former Remington Arms site in Bridgeport.

"We are removing overgrown vegetation in order to scan for unexploded ordnance (bombs, bullets, etc.) from World War II and the Korean War," Quaranta said.

After they've mowed and mulched the forest, a team of surveyors goes through with equipment to scan for the unexploded material, which is then removed from the soil with remote control heavy equipment.

"The goal is to remediate contaminants in the soil, like lead and arsenic, so the site can be remodeled for future use," Quaranta explained.

Because of his specialized equipment, Quaranta gets called to perform work in various locations around the country.

He recently sent a custom-made remote control grinder to clear out trees and stumps along a 13-mile gas main in South Carolina.

When the job is complete, the ground will not have been disturbed and will be left with a layer of protective mulch.

Looking back, Quaranta said he has come a long way since he first purchased a chain saw and a pick-up truck almost 20 years ago.

Advanced Construction and Tree Removal and Advanced Organics are located at 87 Boardman Road, New Milford. For more information, call 860-355-3222, or visit or