When I see an empty tree pit on the city street, how can I get a tree planted there?
Michael, thank you for your interest in getting more trees planted in Philadelphia. There are several options for planting trees in your neighborhood.
PHS coordinates tree plantings every season through local Tree Tenders groups. Tree Tenders group leaders are committed to helping property owners submit an application for free street trees and yard trees through the PHS TreeVitalize program. To find a Tree Tenders group near you, consult the map on this page of our web site.
We have just closed our application request period for trees for this fall; applications are now being accepted for next spring. To learn how to care for your tree, consider attending Tree Tenders training.
Below are listed some other avenues for getting a tree:
Philadelphia Parks and Recreation
Request a street tree through Philadelphia Parks and Recreation.
Philadelphia Parks and Recreation accepts requests from individual property owners.
Call them: 215-685-4360
To request a yard tree from Philadelphia Parks and Recreation, go to treephilly.org
Contact your local civic association to see if they are coordinating any street tree planting projects. Many get funds from Councilperson or State representatives to support their work. (Examples of local civic associations include Center City Residents, Queen Village Neighbors, SOSNA, Fairmount Civic Assoc., Passyunk Square Civic Assoc., East Falls CDC, New Kensington CDC, Fishtown Neighbors, etc.)
Hire a private contractor to plant a tree for you. This generally runs about $300 to $500 depending on how much concrete needs to be removed. Go to the UC Green website for a list of local contractors. If you go this route you should try to make your soil tree pit as large as possible. A 3'x3' tree pit is really inadequate. If your sidewalk area is narrow, make the tree pit rectangular - 3'x4', 3'x5' etc. If your sidewalk area is wider, make the tree pit both wider and longer - 4'x4', 5'x5' etc. The larger the tree pit size, the better the tree will do and the less likely you are to experience sidewalk damage in future years. Please note that when hiring a private contractor, you will still need a permit from Philadelphia Parks and Recreation before planting any trees on the street.
If you are interested in purchasing container trees, PHS also has a retail center just north of Philadelphia called Meadowbrook Farm located at 1633 Washington Lane, Meadowbrook, PA 19046. Visit Meadowbrook Farm’s website here.
After your tree has been planted, make sure it gets counted by registering it atwww.plantonemillion.org
If you have any other questions, please contact Mindy Maslin,firstname.lastname@example.org