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Street Tree Planting Program

The Street Tree Planting Program supports the continued vitality of our urban forest, City of Boulder environmental sustainability and Climate Action Plan goals. The Parks and Recreation Department invites residents to participate each year in this program.

Urban Forestry staff will check each requested planting site in the fall of each year. If your site qualifies, the Urban Forestry workgroup will plant a street tree for you the following spring free of charge. You will be contacted directly if your site does not qualify.


  • Participants must call the forestry office to request a tree for the following spring.
  • Participants must agree to adequately water and care for the tree.
  • Participants must be planning to be long-term residents.
  • Public street right-of-way must be a minimum of 4 feet wide.
  • Property should have a curb and gutter.
  • Forestry will not plant a tree(s) to fulfill any planting requirements made by the City of Boulder.
  • Selected trees will be 1.5 to 2 inches caliper size and 8’ to 12’ tall depending on species. (Caliper size is a measurement of the tree trunk at 6 inches above the soil line.)

Urban Forestry staff will mark the new planting site in the spring with a white stake prior to planting. Utility locates will then be requested. If utilities are clear, your new tree will be planted on the City street right-of-way adjoining your property within one week.

Public street rights-of-way widths, irrigation, soil type and proximity to other trees and overhead utilities will determine the type, size, number and spacing of trees selected by Urban Forestry staff. Forestry staff will select the tree species and planting location that ensures proper tree growth, safety, and maintenance.

Cooperation between the City of Boulder and residents is essential for tree establishment. Residents are asked to monitor the general health of new trees for the first few years, maintain mulch around the base of the tree, and to water street trees regularly to keep roots moist. Tree care information is provided to residents when street trees are planted. The forestry staff inspects street trees periodically and is available for consultation.

Some examples of street tree species planted in the public street rights-of-way include but are not limited to:

Large Maturing

  • American elm (varieties resistant to Dutch elm disease)
  • American linden
  • Bur oak
  • Catalpa
  • English oak
  • Hackberry
  • Honeylocust
  • Horsechestnut
  • Kentucky coffeetree
  • Ohio buckeye
  • Red oak
  • Sugar maple
  • Swamp white oak
  • White oak

Small Maturing

  • Crabapple
  • Goldenraintree
  • Ornamental pears
  • Russian hawthorn
  • Tatarian maple
  • Turkish filbert

Trees are described as large or small maturing based on expected mature height and spread.

For more information or if you have any questions, please contact the Urban Forestry section at 303-441-4406 (Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.)

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