Department of Parks and Recreation
Where Not to Plant Trees
- UNDERGROUND UTILITIES - Presence of underground sewer lines, storm drains, electric lines, etc. requires consultation and permission from various utility agencies before any landscape installation can be undertaken.
- SIZE OF THE AREA - Many areas are too small and/or too narrow for adequate plant growth (especially tree roots). Grass strips must be at least four feet wide and preferably six feet before trees are installed.
- CAR AND PEDESTRIAN SAFETY - Many areas cannot be landscaped because plants reduce visibility thus creating a safety problem. These sight/distance problems must be examined with future sizes of plant materials (especially evergreen trees) kept in mind.
- OVERHEAD WIRES - Presence of overhead wires limits ultimate tree height, thus limiting the species of tree used in the area.
- SITE CONDITIONS - Presence of poor soil, old roadbeds, salt, and other physical factors restricts or eliminates landscaping in some areas. Poor growth and increased mortality of trees is often related to poor site conditions.
- SEPARATE JURISDICTIONS - County maintained streets are given priority planting over state or federal roads. All plantings on non-County rights-of-way require permission from the controlling agency. Added requirements for these areas usually delay project installment by at least one year.
- FUTURE CONSTRUCTION - Areas where construction is planned (street widening, sidewalks, curb and gutter, sewer, etc.) should not be planted until the construction is complete.
- PUBLIC VISIBILITY - Busy roadways with heavier traffic volume receive more attention than lightly traveled residential streets.
- DAMAGE-PRONE AREAS - Areas subject to frequent vehicular accidents or excessive vandalism are usually not landscaped.
- MAINTENANCE REQUIREMENTS - Many projects are curbed or postponed due to limited availability of maintenance staff and funds to provide proper care. It does little good to install trees that will die in two years due to lack of water or post-planting attention. Consideration must also be given to the possible increased maintenance of the area surrounding the planted area (mowing for example).