Vancouver urban trees

Compendium of Best Urban Forest Management Practices

Chapter 8. Species Selection and Planting

Return to the Compendium homepage here:
Compendium of Best Urban Forest Management Practices →

Selecting the appropriate tree species and location for planting is imperative to sustaining a healthy urban forest, providing for a cost effective urban forest program and providing acceptable urban forest solutions to neighbourhoods and communities. The right tree in the right place should always be the urban foresters’ modus operandi. Tree species should be considered based on aesthetic appeal, hardiness zone, size, form and site conditions of the growing location. To minimize conflicts and reduce maintenance needs, trees should be visualized at full functional size when surveying a potential site for planting. Selecting a tree that is well suited to the soil conditions, light availability, pedestrian traffic, drainage, space and microclimate of the specific site is essential to its long-term survival and public safety.


Vancouver Street Tree Planting Program
Guide to Tree Planting, Tree Canada
Tree Planting Guide: City of Kelowna, BC
Native Trees Database: Ottawa Forests and Greenspace Advisory Committee
Tree Planting Program: City of Toronto, ON
Tree Planting on School Grounds, Ottawa, ON
Tree Planting on Public Property: City of Edmonton

Online documents (.PDF or .DOC)

Alberta Tree Species Rating Guide, ISA
Tree Planting: Hydro Ottawa
Buying High-Quality Trees
Maintaining Healthy Urban Trees, Landowner Resource Centre (Ontario)
Choosing the Right Tree: A Landowner’s Guide to Putting Down Roots

Non-Canadian sites & resources

Trees for Urban Planting: Diversity, Uniformity, and Common Sense, USDA (.PDF)
Selecting, Planting and Caring for a New Tree: A Technical Guide (.PDF)
How to Plant a Tree, Virginia Department of Forestry
Seattle Street Tree Planting Procedures (.PDF)
Planting Trees in Designed and Built Community Landscapes
New Tree Planting, ISA
Tree Selection, ISA
Buying High-Quality Trees, ISA
A Guide to Planting and Caring for Trees in Kern County, USA
Planting Techniques for Trees and Shrubs, North Carolina State University
Choose the Right Tree and the Right Location, Virginia Department of Forestry
Selecting and Planting Landscape Trees
Planting Trees Correctly, University of Vermont
Tree Selection, Kennewick, WA
SelecTree: A Tree Selection Guide, Urban Forest Ecosystems Institute, Cal Poly State University

Bibliographical Resources:

Farrar, J. (1995). Trees in Canada. Canadian Forest Service.

Gilman, E. (1996). Trees for Urban and Suburban Landscapes. International Society of Arboriculture. Champaign, IL. 662 pp.

Moll, G. and Young, S. (1992). Growing Greener Cities: A Tree Planting Handbook. Global ReLeaf. Living Planet Press and American Forestry Association, Los Angeles, CA, 126 pp.

ORTHO Books (1982). All About Trees. Chevron Chemical Company.

Watson, G., Himelick, E. (1997). Principles and Practice of Planting Trees and Shrubs. International Society of Arboriculture. Champaigne, IL. 200 pp.


Connect with the largest network of urban forest professionals in Canada