Tree Preservation Plan
Trees are an important part of a sustainable urban landscape. They provide many benefits to our macro/micro environments. Whether you have trees in an established landscape or you are constructing around trees, you should have a tree preservation plan (TPP). Your plan should include protection and maintenance.

 

Protection:
Established Landscapes:
  • Keep string trimmers away from the base of the tree. The tree never heals from this type of damage.
  • Avoid damage from mowers and other landscape equipment.
  • Use an irrigation design that protects the tree roots during and after installation.
  • Avoid soil compaction in the root zone area resulting from vehicular traffic or the storage of equipment or materials.
Construction Sites:
  • Install temporary fencing around tree protection zones to protect remaining trees and vegetation from construction damage. Maintain temporary fence and remove when construction is complete. No construction activities, equipment, or materials shall be stored or take place inside the tree protection fencing.
  • Apply shredded hardwood mulch inside protective fencing during construction.
  • Include contract terms that financially penalize the contractor for tree damage on the site.
  • Do not run utility or irrigation lines inside the tree protection zones.
  • Include measures in your tree protection plan that address other activities detrimental to trees such as chemical storage, material storage, cement truck cleaning, and fires.
Maintenance:
  • Use proper pruning techniques.
  • Mulch around the root system but do not let the mulch touch the tree trunk.
  • Perform deep root spoon-feeding and aeration.
Things You Should NOT Do:
  • Do not pour concrete inside of trees to fill rotten areas.
  • Do not leave tie-wires on limbs for more than 6 months.
Proper and Improper Pruning Examples
Proper Pruning Examples
These are correct cuts. The cut is a perfect and complete circle as it seals itself over the cut.
Improper Pruning Examples
This limb was cut too deep on the top side. Notice the growth above the cut. (above left)

The limb was cut too long. There is decay back into the tree. (above right)

This limb was not cut off when the limb died. The decay has moved into the tree. It should have been properly pruned when it was first damaged. (above left)
Other Things NOT To Do
Do NOT pour concrete inside trees to fill hollow areas! As seen in the picture on the right, cracks will occur as the tree puts pressure on the hard fill material. (see photos above)
This tree was staked and then not cared for as it should have been. The rubber covered brace wire should have been removed in September, instead it was left on and the tree grew around it so that it could not be removed. The stem will eventually die because the Cambium and Xylem columns have been cut off. If you must use tie-wires to stake, use a cloth strap and be sure to take it down within 6 months. (see photo above)