Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) Urban Forestry has updated its approved street tree planting lists. The lists are for property owners, contractors and developers to use when planting trees in the City right-of-way, typically the planting strip between the sidewalk and the curb.
Black tupelo (Nyssa Sylvatica)
The lists are categorized by tree height, from short (2.5 foot sites with or without high voltage power lines) to tall (8.5 foot and greater sites without high voltage power lines), and heights in-between. Within each height division, the lists indicate whether the tree variety is evergreen or a native selection, and those that offer fall color, showy flowers, fruit/nuts for wildlife, or textured bark.
The selection of trees was greatly expanded from previous lists, with more than 150 tree species now approved. The lists were created through a collaborative process with input from PP&R and Bureau of Environmental Services staff, the Urban Forestry Commission, Friends of Trees, and residents.
Maples were not included on the new planting lists due to their overabundance in the city. Maples make up almost 28 percent of Portland’s street tree population, according to inventory data. This high percentage creates a risk that pests affecting maples will catastrophically reduce the city’s street tree canopy. The new street tree lists recommend diverse planting options in order to increase the resilience and health of Portland’s tree canopy now and in the future.
PP&R Urban Forestry encourages feedback from local nurseries on what species options they can provide contractors and property owners for planting in the City right-of-way. PP&R Urban Forestry also invites Oregon nurseries to communicate with them about ways they can work together in the future to support diverse tree planting and other forest management goals within the City of Portland.
To give feedback, contact Danielle Bohannan, botanic specialist at Portland Parks & Recreation, at Danielle.Bohannan@portlandoregon.gov or 503-823-6333. For general information on street trees, the approved street tree planting lists, and urban forest management in Portland, visit the Urban Forestry website at www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/trees or call PP&R Urban Forestry at 503-823-4489.