June 24, 2020

Digging Deeper With TreeUtah

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For some 30 years TreeUtah has been growing Utah's much needed tree canopy through planting trees in neighborhoods and communities. Much had changed over 30 years of tree planting! That is why we continually work with cities and county partners to ensure the right tree is planted in the right place, every year and since every location is different we are used to getting quite a few questions about why, what and where we plant:

We work closely with our municipal partners and we can only plant trees that are on approved areas for tree planting. One of the goals of our program, and the partners we work with, is to increase the urban canopy in order to maximize the benefits and create tree equity in areas which need more shade. In other words, the larger the tree, the more the urban canopy grows, which provides more benefits in terms of cooling in the heat of summer, providing oxygen, and cleaning our air and water. So when a planting site allows it we need to optimize the size of the tree planted to ensure survival. We also want to make sure we aren’t planting trees that are too big, in order to protect existing urban infrastructure.

Fruit trees are planted in certain spaces, such as yards or garden areas that are six feet or larger and have overhead primary power lines. You can visit some of those types of trees in the EcoGarden!

When looking to plant native trees we will always make sure to plant the right tree in the right place. Native trees are often preferred, but many tend to get pretty big and just won’t work in some planting locations due to overhead power lines, if the strip isn’t wide enough, a nearby intersection. We plant as diversely as possible toward a sustainable urban forest.

If you are considering removing or planting a new tree,  you can check with the city to see if there are laws affecting your tree. We can’t help you with a tree removal and to remove a street tree, you need a permit. Contact your city’s urban forestry department directly for a removal inspection. If you want to consult with us for replanting a new tree just contact our office and we can help in your selection process.  All street tree locations are based on a city inspection, and there are many factors involved, including distance from underground utilities, overhead lights and power lines, utility poles, fire hydrants, intersections, and street signs. Planting in the spot chosen by the inspector will help ensure your street tree has the best shot at long term survival.

Proper watering for the first three years after planting encourages tree roots to grow deeper in the soil, we recommend at least 15 gallons a week during the summer for the tree’s first three years, and as needed in the future when temperatures are extreme. We do our best to keep an eye on all trees planted to make sure they are healthy for generations to come.

We hope you find as much joy and the benefits from planting trees as TreeUtah does! Research more on planting on your own or join us at one of our public events and learn in action, see you soon!