The Right Tree in the Right Place
A healthy community forest begins with careful planning. Trees provide many benefits such as wildlife diversity, higher property values, improved air and water quality, storm water management, energy savings from summer and winter extremes, and quality human health. The key to these benefits, however, is to select the right tree and plant it in the right place.
A proper landscape plan takes each tree into consideration in order to maximize benefits and minimize future maintenance costs. Choosing a tree should involve more than picking one you think looks good. Consider characteristics such as height, canopy spread, form/shape, growth rate, soil/sun/moisture requirements, fruit, and hardiness zone. Overuse of a single species of tree greatly increases vulnerability to insects and diseases so you should also consider what other trees have been planted in the area.
Click here to check out resources provided by the Arbor Day Foundation to ensure you are planting the right tree in the right place.
Planting Trees in Public Rights-of-Way and City-Owned Green Spaces
The City of Hamilton uses rights-of-way, easements, and other public places as a practical matter and the city has the right to restrict, manage, and control what is planted in these areas through city ordinance. Additionally, the city has the responsibility to address safety issues in public places.
The City of Hamilton has approximately 140 different species of trees growing in public rights-of-way and city-owned green spaces.
View Codified Ordinance Chapter 915, Comprehensive Tree and Planting Plan, for the list of approved street trees. You can also see pictures and learn more about approved trees by following the QR codes on this Tree Poster. Hamilton's approved street tree list is based on research and expertise from the Ohio State University Extension, Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Forestry, municipal arborists, and landscape nursery suppliers in Southwest Ohio.
Additionally, trees that are week wooded, prone to storm damage, or produce fruit or nuts, such as apple, pear, or peach trees, are prohibited from planting in public rights-of-way or city-owned green spaces. See the full list of prohibited street trees here.
Tree Selection Resources
- Potential Trees for Planting
- Landsacpe Guide for Developers, Businesses and Homeowners
- Basic Principles of Landscape Design
- Tree Sites: Good, Bad & Ugly (video)
- Tree Selection Guide
- Selecting Trees from Landscape Nurseries
- Choosing the Best Tree for Purchase from a Nursery (video)
- Tree Species Best for New Development Areas
- Pollinator Poster - follow the QR codes to learn what trees to plant to attract specific pollinators