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Pruning for Street Clearance March 2017

A crew from the Parks & Recreation Department is working on pruning trees along some city streets. The pruning is in preparation for street surface overlay work that will be done this summer.  By pruning low-hanging branches back to a major branch or the tree trunk, the crew is be providing at least 14 feet of clearance over the street.  This clearance will help prevent damage to both trees and to street resurfacing equipment.
Over 500 trees have been identified as having low branches over the street in these areas. Most of the trees overhanging these streets are “public trees” that were planted within the right-of-way. The Parks Department has made contact with abutting property owners through door hangers or letters about the work, since they are normally responsible for providing the required care. For trees on private property, owners have been contacted to obtain permission to prune back the low-hanging branches on these trees also.

Because of time restraints, the Parks & Recreation Department crew will be pruning for street clearance only.  If a more thorough pruning is needed, private property owners and the property owners abutting public trees that need to be pruned do have the choice to prune the trees themselves or hire a tree service to prune them.  A list of city-licensed tree services and free information permits that come with proper tree pruning methods is available from the Parks Department office at City Hall.  A cost-share program is available for single family residences when licensed tree services are hired to prune public trees. Permits are always required when wanting to remove trees within the right-of-way as well. This information is also available in the Urban Forestry section of the city’s website.

Seedling Planting on Tubbs Hill

300 tree seedlings were planted on Tubbs Hill in October 2016. The project was a great success thanks to the city’s Urban Forestry Committee, Community Canopy volunteers, the Tubbs Hill Foundation and the Parks Department. Ponderosa pine tree seedlings were planted in areas where brush was has been removed for fuel reduction purposes. The new trees will provide canopy and shade which will help reduce the density of the shrubs (ladder fuels) naturally, making Tubbs Hill a safer place for recreation.

Free Street Trees
The City has been planting street trees in new neighborhoods since 2006.  110 street trees were last planted in October 2016. Funding for the trees has come from a street tree fee collected on residential building permits. The residential street tree fees can be refunded to builders or new homeowners who plant a street tree upon completion of a new home. Six months after the completion of a home, unclaimed funds are forfeited to the City.  The City is now using those forfeited funds each spring to purchase and plant trees in new neighborhoods. If you live in a new neighborhood, you may qualify for a free street tree.  Please call the Parks Department at 769-2266.