Trees for Neighborhoods
Trees for Neighborhoods is the City of Seattle's residential tree planting project. Since 2009, Trees for Neighborhoods has helped Seattle residents plant over 6,300 trees in their yards and along the street. That's 6,300 more trees working to clean our air and water, make our streets more walkable, and our neighborhoods healthier! Learn more about the benefits of neighborhood trees here.
Sign up to join our 2016 email list to receive notification of next year's species list and application opening date, which usually occurs in early August.
Trees for Neighborhoods articipants receive:
Evergreen conifers provide year-round interest to your yard.
- Free trees (up to 4 per household, lifetime max of 8). We offer a variety of small, medium, and large trees appropriate under power lines, along the street, and in the yard.
- A watering bag & mulch for each tree
- Training on proper planting and care
- Assistance applying for street tree planting permits
- Ongoing care reminders and future pruning workshop opportunities
If you would like to join the 2016 email list, please click here.
How it Works
Take time to evaluate potential planting sites on your property. Read the planting considerations page before selecting trees. Be sure to assess your planting space and match it to an appropriate tree.
- Apply for trees through the online application. Our tree list changes each year; check out lists from past years here. The application opens each year around the first week of August.
- Attend a planting workshop to learn about proper planting and care and bring home your new trees.
- Plant and mulch your new trees.
- Stay connected with care reminders and pruning workshop opportunities to ensure you're giving your trees the love and care they need to thrive.
Need assistance planting your new tree? On a case-by-case basis, we offer delivery and planting help to participants who need physical assistance. To inquire about this service, please call 206-684-3979 or email TreesforNeighborhoods@seattle.gov.
Check out some photos from past years to learn more about the process.
- Choose trees appropriate for the space (Read the Planting Considerations page for more information)
- On your application, indicate if the tree will be planted on the street
- Pickup your trees and attend a planting & care workshop
- Only plant trees in approved locations- trees must be planted at the address on the application. Street trees must be planted in approved and marked locations.
- Properly plant trees in the ground (no pots!)
- Assume all future maintenance & responsibility (summer watering, raking, pruning, mulching, etc.)
Planting Street Trees
What's a street tree? A street tree is planted in the public right-of-way, usually in the planting strip (space between sidewalk and road) or in the space approximately 10 feet from the curb or roadside, in the absence of sidewalks.
Street trees provide our neighborhoods so many benefits from providing much needed shade in summer to making our streets more attractive for walking and biking.
To make sure street trees are planted in locations where they will not interfere with underground sewer, water, and gas lines or overhead power lines, residents must obtain a free permit from the Seattle Department of Transportation. We will apply for this permit on your behalf when you participate in the Trees for Neighborhoods program. Be sure to indicate you are planting street trees on your application.
Check out the Frequently Asked Questions to see if your question has already been answered. If not, we’re here to help! Please don't hesistate from reaching out and asking. Contact us at TreesForNeighborhoods@Seattle.gov or 206-684-3979.
Do you or someone you know need physical assistance planting a tree this year? On a case-by-case basis, we offer tree planting assistance to participants who are physically unable to plant a tree themselves. To inquire about this service, please call 206-684-3979 or email TreesforNeighborhoods@seattle.gov.
Consider Planting a Large Tree
Large trees often become treasured neighborhood assets. Research has shown that large trees maximize the benefits in urban areas. They provide higher quality habitat for birds and other wildlife and they have larger root systems to help stabilize hillsides and prevent erosion. Large trees do more to buffer weather conditions, providing shade on hot days to reduce the need for air conditioning, and blocking winter winds to help save on heating bills. Studies have also shown that large trees even increase residential and commercial property values!
Large evergreen trees, especially conifers, are even better. Because large conifers grow so tall in our region, they produce a larger volume of leaf area on a smaller footprint – using the same amount of yard space but working harder to take in carbon dioxide, produce oxygen, and filter out air pollutants. And because evergreens hold their needles and leaves through the winter, our rainy season, they reduce stormwater runoff to a much greater extent than do small deciduous trees.
If you have the space in your yard or planting strip (away from overhead power lines), consider making a long-term investment in your neighborhood by planting a tree that will give back for decades!
See Where Our Trees Have Gone
Since 2009, residents have planted over 6,300 trees across the city through Trees for Neighborhoods. Explore the map to learn more about where the trees have been planted. Click here to explore a larger, more interactive map.
Is there room for more trees in your neighborhood?
Want To Do More?
Join the Tree Ambassadors for a neighborhood Tree Walk or an upcoming work party to help keep our urban forest healthy and beautiful. Check out our upcoming events calendar.
Volunteer at a park near you with Green Seattle Partnership and help restore our parks by planting native trees and shrubs and pulling invasives. Click here to learn more!