Trees for Neighborhoods
Since 2009, Trees for Neighborhoods has helped Seattle residents plant over 9,300 trees in their yards and along the street. That's 9,300 more trees working to clean our air and water, make our streets more walkable, and our neighborhoods healthier! See where the trees are planted.
When you participate in Trees for Neighborhoods, you receive:
- Help selecting the right tree and planting location
- Free trees (up to 4 per household, lifetime max of 6)
- 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
- Tree delivery & planting assistance if you need physical help or lack access to a vehicle
- Street tree evaluations for the first couple of years to let you know how your trees are doing
Plant a Tree in 2019!
The initial application period has closed. We are still accepting applications for YARD TREES ONLY for the below species. We are no longer accepting applications for street trees. Remaing available species:
- Douglas fir
- Western hemlock
- Incense cedar
Steps to Planting Your New Tree:
- Evaluate your planting site and tree options. Read the planting considerations page. Select the tree best suited for the space.
- Under power lines? Select one of the power line approved trees.
- Backyard space? Choose the largest tree appropriate for your site.
Review the 2019 tree list. Pay attention to the mature size of the trees and their needs for sun. Select trees that will have room to grow to maturity. If you have space, plant a large tree to bring the greatest benefits to your neighborhood.
- Apply Online. We are currently only accepting applications for yard trees (not trees planted along streets) and only a few remaining species. If there are more requests for a given species than we have trees available, recipients will be randomly selected. Learn more about the application process here.
- Chose a planting and care workshop when you apply. This is when you will pick-up your trees. Add this date to your calendar. Fall is the best time to plant a tree in Seattle so your new tree can settle in before the hot dry summer months.
- Need assistance planting your new tree? We offer delivery and planting help to participants who need physical assistance or lack access to a vehicle. Call 206-684-3979 or email TreesforNeighborhoods@seattle.gov for information.
Important 2019 Dates
- October 5: Tree pick up workshop. Center for Urban Horticulture (Montlake neighborhood)
- October 12: Tree pick up workshop. Georgetown Campus South Seattle College (limited availability)
- October 27: Tree pick up workshop. Center for Urban Horticulture (Montlake neighborhood)
- Choose trees appropriate for the space
- On your application, indicate if the tree will be planted along the street or in your yard
- Pickup your trees and attend an onsite 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.)
In 2016, the application process changed from first-come-first-serve to a lottery process. This change allows applicants more time to make tree selections and prevent certain species from selling out within minutes, as they have in past years. Nonetheless, the number of trees approved for your yard may be fewer than the number requested. Trees for Neighborhoods has become very popular and thus some trees can sell out very quickly. Small trees are most popular. To increase your chances of receiving a tree, consider planting a larger tree if space allows. If you are not immediately approved for a tree, you will be placed on a waitlist. As participants change their minds or drop out of the program, more trees will become available and will be approved in the order the applications were received.
How will I know if my application is approved?
After the first round of the application lottery closes, Trees for Seattle will begin processing applications. Once your application is processed, you willl receive an email with the status of your tree order.
How does the lottery work?
All applications received will be assigned a random number once the application closes. Trees for Seattle staff process applications sequentially by random number. An entire application order will be processed at once, however only trees still available will be marked as "Approved". Trees will be distributed until sold out. Once a species is sold out, requests will be added to a waitlist in the same sequential order and marked on the applicaiton as "Waitlist". As trees become available for the waitlist, they will be distributed in order of the position on the waitlist.
Can I submit more than one application to improve my chances?
No, please submit only one application per household. We will only process the first application we receive from your address. Since we will process the entire application at once, it does not benefit you to submit more than one. If you submit your application and would like to make a change before the application closing date, please contact us and we will make that change on your behalf.
Which workshop do I choose?
There are 3 workshop dates. The first and the last workshop dates are at the Center for Urban Horticulture. The middle date is a limited workshop in south Seattle (exact location to be determined). Even though both workshops at the Center for Urban Horticulture (CUH) are the same for time and content, the first workshop is chosen more often. If you would like to attend a less crowded event, consider signing up for the later CUH workshop. If you are planting in the 98126, 98106, 98108, or 98118 zip codes and getting to the CUH is a hardship for you, choose the workshop in south Seattle. Space in this workshop is limited and will be allocated based on your lottery position. If you do not get in to this workshop, we will contact you to choose one of the workshops at CUH.
Attention renters! If you do not own your home, you need to ask the permission of the homeowner before applying for trees. Also consider follow-up care. Young trees need regular summer watering through their first three years. If you do not plan to be at your home that long, consider how the young tree will receive the proper care it needs.
Attention landlords! If you apply for trees for one of your rental properties, please consider future watering and maintenance. If you are unable to water the trees 2x/week during the summer months, please be sure your renter is willing.
Tree Pickup Information
You must be present at the planting and care workshop to pick up your tree(s). Indicate which date you are available to attend the workshop on the application.
- You are responsible for transporting your trees from the pickup site to your home. You may need to rent or borrow a pickup truck if you have a small vehicle or are picking up numerous trees. Remember that having more passengers in the car means less space for trees!
- The trees will be in 5, 7, or 10 gallon containers and are generally 4-6 feet tall. Staff will help you load your trees on the pick-up days, but you may need to make sure you have help to unload once you are home.
- All trees should be planted within 1-2 weeks after receiving them. You are responsible for planting the tree, which is why we require each participant to go through a planting workshop at the pickup event. If you are physically unable to plant your tree and would like assistance, please contact us.
- Your young trees will not survive the dry summer without watering. Water bags will be provided to help you care for your trees in the summer. For more tips about caring for your young tree, click here.