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There’s still time to plant that tree!


SDOT’s Urban Forestry Tree and Landscape crews have just completed planting over 300 trees in South Park, Genesee Park, and along Columbian Way.  The trees are a mix of oaks, maples, serviceberries, zelkovas, and crabapples.  This last round of fall planting completes Urban Forestry’s goal to plant 800 trees a year with funding from  the Bridging the Gap voter- approved transportation initiative.  What do the trees have to do with transportation? Plenty!  By increasing our canopy/tree cover in the public right-of-way, we minimize stormwater runoff, reduce air pollution, collect and store carbon, mitigate urban heat islands by creating shade, and make neighborhoods more livable and walkable.

Even though SDOT is wrapping up its planting for the year, City Arborist Nolan Rundquist says you can plant trees with roots that are wrapped in burlap or are in pots as long as the ground is “workable” – not hard.  He adds that the sooner you plant your tree, the better, because the tree’s root system continues to grow as long as the soil temperature is 50° or warmer.  A strong root system makes for a healthy tree.

On Nolan’s webpage , you can find guidance on everything you need to know to grow a thriving tree from selection, to planting, to pruning –  you name it!  You’ll even find on our website a section titled “Proper watering, mulching, fertilizing and pruning of Street Trees” – it’s a handy year-long month-by-month calendar of steps to follow to keep your new tree healthy.