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Planting Programs and Maintenance Policies

Tree Planting Programs

Tree Planting ProgramsRedwood City offers two free Tree Planting Programs: block planting and planting by request. Generally, with either program, only one tree species is designated per block. When power lines or other utility constrains exist, a second tree species may be designated for these areas. The standard nursery stock tree is in a 15-gallon sized container. Property owners may upgrade to a larger tree in a 24" boxed container by paying $85. The upgraded tree is usually about 1/3 larger and two to four years older.

Block Planting:
This program is co-funded and co-sponsored by CityTrees, a non-profit organization that is committed to improving the quality of life in Redwood City through a coordinated program of tree planting, maintenance and education. Tree planting events are held on selected blocks and every available planting site receives a new tree. If the residents cannot water the tree, city personnel will water the tree for the first two years, until the tree is established.

Planting by Request:
Property owners may also request new street trees – trees along the public-right-of-way. Redwood City offers two planting program opportunities, one in spring and the other in fall. To be eligible for these free trees, the resident must commit to watering the tree(s) for the first two years after planting. When a simple watering agreement is signed and returned to Public Works, the tree(s) will be scheduled for the next planting opportunity.

Tree Maintenance Policies

The City has approximately 18,000 street trees and 15,000 park trees. Due to the magnitude of the inventory, and budget deficits, the city no longer cares for or maintains trees in the public right-of-way.

Certain types of trees should be pruned only during specific times of the year. These trees are generally not pruned at other times unless a high-risk situation exists. For example:

  • Monterey Pines are pruned between October and February to minimize the potential infestation by bark beetles. Bark beetles are usually dormant during these months.
  • Elm trees are also pruned from fall through spring. The Elm bark beetle is usually dormant and the potential for spreading the Dutch Elm Disease is minimized.

Pruning by request will be available only when a high-risk situation exists, such as to remedy clearance issues, dead or weak limb removal and in response to storm damage. Public Works also works closely with the park maintenance staff to maintain the park trees.

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