The City of Lancaster offers an affordable Street Tree Planting Program to all residents and businesses. The program is free of charge except for the cost of the tree. The City Arborist will help you pick a tree, conduct a site evaluation, prepare the planting site (including concrete removal), and plant the tree. Just follow the steps below!
All trees planted outside of this program require a permit from the City Arborist prior to planting. Refer to the Tree Manual for planting standards and refer to PP&L for recommendations on planting near/under powerlines.
Fill out an application online or make a request by phone (717-291-4846). City staff will then visit your site and mail you a Tree Planting Release Form with recommended species. Refer to the Tree List to see what tree species the City offers. Trees are sold to homeowners at-cost and range between $165-230. This also includes the labor for installation, which may involve removing concrete, removing a stump, digging the tree pit, and planting the tree.
Mail the City a Tree Planting Release Form. This must include a check for the appropriate amount. Only the landowner can sign this form and the species choice must be approved by the City Arborist, Jim Bower (717-291-4846). All trees are healthy, professionally-grown and range from 8-10 feet tall.
The City will prepare a proper site for your new tree. If an old stump or concrete sidewalk must be removed, the Arborist will handle it. There is no additional charge.
The City will deliver and plant your new tree. This typically involves soil preparation, mulching, staking, and anything else required to make sure your tree will thrive. They will include a watering bag that wraps around the trunk and is designed to deliver water to the tree. There is no additional charge.
It’s now up to you to properly maintain your tree. In its first two years of life, it will require weekly watering; the Arborist will provide instructions on filling the watering bag. You should also remove litter from the tree bed and occasionally consult an arborist about pruning. Landowners are responsible for maintaining their street tree, including removal, trimming, and replacement.
Below is a list of trees that can be purchased through the City’s Street Tree Planting Program. With a Tree Work Permit a resident can choose to plant another tree as long as it is permitted by the City’s ordinance. For a complete list of permitted trees see the City’s Tree Manual.
* Asterisks denote species native to Pennsylvania
Larger trees are most suitable for sites free of overhead power lines, constrictive sidewalks, and nearby, underground utilities.
1. Autumn Blaze Maple Acer x freemani
2. Armstrong Maple Acer x freemani
3. Red Maple* Acer rubrum
4. Bowhall Maple Acer rubrum
5. October Glory Red Maple* Acer rubrum
7. Red Sunset Red Maple* Acer rubrum
8. Princeton Sentry Ginkgo (male) Ginkgo biloba
9. Autumn Gold Ginkgo (male) Ginkgo biloba
10. Kentucky Coffee Tree (male)* Gymnocladus dioicus
11. Dawn Redwood Metasequoia glyptostroboides
12. London Plane Tree Platanus x acerifolia
13. Shumard Oak* Quercus shumardii
14. Red Oak* Quercus rubra
15. Swamp White Oak* Quercus bicolor
16. Sawtooth Oak Quercus acutissima
17. Bald Cypress* Taxodium distichum
18. Lacebark Elm Ulmus parviflora
19. Morton Elm Ulmus japonica x Ulmus wilsoniana
20. Green Vase Zelkova Zelkova serrata
In areas where overhead communication and secondary utility lines are present, medium-sized trees may be more suitable.
1. Hedge Maple Acer campestre
2. Belle Tower Sugar Maple* Acer saccharum
3. Fort McNair Red Horsechestnut Aesculus x carnea
4. Fastigate European Hornbeam Carpinus betulus
5. Katsura Tree Cercidiphyllum japonicum
6. Shademaster Honey Locust* Gleditsia triacanthos var. inermis
7. Skyline Honey Locust* Gleditsia triacanthos var. inermis
8. Goldenrain Tree Koelreuteria paniculata
9. Black Gum* Nyssa sylvatica
10. American Hophornbeam* Ostrya virginiana
11. Muhlenberg Oak* Quercus muehlenbergii
Wherever there may be primary power lines present, or extremely limited site space, small trees are most appropriate.
1. Paperbark Maple Acer griseum
2. Constellation Dogwood Cornus florida x Cornus kousa
3. Thornless Cockspur Hawthorn* Cratageus crusgalli var. inermis
4. Ohio Pioneer Hawthorn* Cratageus crusgalli var. inermis
5. Centurion Crabapple Malus x zumi x Almey
6. Persian Parrotia Parrotia persica
7. Columnar Sargent Cherry Prunus sargentii (Alternatives – Snow Goose, Pink Flair)
8. Okame Flowering Cherry Prunus campanulata x Prunus incisa
9. Autumnalis Flowering Cherry Prunus subhirtella
10. Ivory Silk Tree Lilac Syringa reticulate
Direct your tree planting documents, forms, and questions to
Lancaster City Arborist
420 South Broad Street
Lancaster, PA 17603
Tree planting requests must be made by the Landowner of the property. This form will initiate a site visit to determine if a tree can be planted and what species are appropriate for the site. If your location is approved, then you will receive a Tree Planting Release Form in the mail; please sign and return the form.