City-Owned Street Trees in Public Right-of-Way
"Street trees" are those designated trees planted either in or adjacent to the public right-of-way, which are controlled as part of public right-of-way maintenance. Street trees are pruned on an "as needed" basis determined by both the needs and resources of the City. While virtually all street trees are legally the property of the homeowner, the City controls them for the public good.
Can I Prune My Street Tree?
No, the Street Tree ordinance prohibits individuals from pruning street trees without a permit. The Community Services Department will perform the maintenance of your tree or you can apply for a permit to hire a licensed tree care professional at your own expense.
How Often Will the City Prune My Tree?
The City attempts to prune City trees every four years. To see when your neighborhood is scheduled for pruning see our Pruning Schedule.
What if My Tree Needs Pruning Sooner?
Submit your request to San Bruno Responds to have someone come out and review your needs.
Can I Remove My Street Tree?
No, the Street Tree ordinance prohibits individuals from removing a street tree without a permit. If you would like to request the removal of a street tree, please contact us by email with the following information:
- Name, address, phone number
- Reason for removal request
- Current picture of tree
The City Arborist and Community Services Director will review each request and shall determine:
- The condition of the tree or trees with respect to disease, the danger of falling, proximity to existing or proposed structures, and interference with utility services
- The necessity to remove the tree or trees in order to construct any proposed improvements to allow reasonable economic enjoyment of the property
- The topography of the land and effect of the removal of the tree on erosion, soil retention, and diversion or increased flow of surface waters
- The number of trees existing in the neighborhood on the improved property and the effect the removal would have on the established standard of the area and property values
If the City Arborist and Community Services Director approve the removal of a street tree, it will be at no cost to the private resident.
Requesting a New Street Tree
If you would like to request a new street tree where one has not previously existed, please submit your request to San Bruno Responds with the exact location where you would like a tree planted. The City Arborist will review the request and determine if the location requested is suitable to plant a street tree.
What Type of Tree Will You Plant?
Certain trees are more suitable for the different geographical areas of San Bruno. The City Arborist will assist you in the proper selection of tree from the Master Tree List (PDF).
Who Takes Care of the Tree?
Residents commit to providing water for the tree, usually once per week. Pruning, staking, or any maintenance will be performed by the City. View the Watering Guidelines (PDF).