Do I have to plant a replacement tree?

The overall goal of the Heritage Tree Ordinance’s replacement requirement is to ensure continued canopy cover is maintained or increased. Ideally, the replacement tree(s) should replace the removed canopy cover in a period of approximately 15 to 20 years.

The City provides a list of recommended trees in the administrative guidelines, but here are other options:

  1. Visit Cal Poly’s SelecTree webpage to help select a replacement tree and fill in at least these characteristics:
    • Mature height must be greater or equal to 35 feet; and
    • Select the “California Native” option
  2. Confirm on UC Davis’s Water Use Classification of Landscape Species webpage that the selected replacement tree’s water usage is either very low, low, or moderate/medium.
  3. Confirm the selected tree has an overall desirability of 4 or less as defined in the Western Chapter International Society of Arboriculture: Species Classification and Group Assignment, 2004, or the most current edition. Your project arborist may have a copy of the book.

Show All Answers

1. How do I measure a tree that has multiple trunks?
2. How much of a heritage tree can I prune without a permit?
3. Where could I get an application to remove or heavily prune a heritage tree?
4. What do I need to submit to the City for a permit application to remove or heavily prune a Heritage tree?
5. Is there a fee for the permit?
6. Do I need a permit to remove a dead heritage tree?
7. What is required for heritage trees related to development applications?
8. Could the city arborist come out and take a look at my tree before I apply for a permit?
9. Can the City recommend a certified arborist?
10. On what basis does the city arborist approve a permit?
11. How do I find the status of my permit application?
12. Can I appeal the decision?
13. Do I have to plant a replacement tree?
14. What if I don’t have any space on my property to replant a tree that has been approved for removal?
15. Is there a public platform to track permit applications, pending appeals, and proposed tree replacements?
16. What are tree appraisals and why are they required?
17. Will notices be required for decisions made under Criterion 1, 2, 3, or 4?