Does a Homeowner Need Permission For Tree Removal in Delaware?

By Stein Tree
Posted on July 8, 2019

If you are thinking of doing some tree removal on your property in Delaware you should first know what the rules are. We have been servicing the surrounding area for over three decades, and have extensive experience in all types of yard and tree maintenance. Before you get started you need to know your rights as a homeowner, and what exactly you are allowed to do.

As differences exist between private and public property, having information is key. The state of Delaware has no regulations about tree removal on private property, however, if you are part of a Home Owner Association, you may need approval before planting or removing trees. We can help with a bit of information about responsibility for and care of public property trees.

Who is Responsible for Tree Removal?

The state of Delaware has rules in place regarding tree removal on public property. Delaware promotes tree growth in its urban sector but, as mentioned, allows a private residential owner to remove trees when necessary.

Trees on public property and in the public right-of-way are protected. No one may remove, prune, or plant a tree on public property without permission from the city. The most common questions come up regarding street trees, the trees that are between the sidewalk and the roadway. Technically these areas are public property, which the city owns. However, the city of Wilmington has special rules which state that the owner of the adjacent property must care for the trees in the public area. Below are some common questions that you may have:

What happens if I have a street tree that needs to be removed?

In this instance, two different things may happen. If the city removes the tree due to a sanctioned city project, the tree must be replaced with two new ones. If you, the property owner, wish to have a contractor take care of tree removal, each tree removed must be replaced with one other tree. The city has a list of approved species including Red Maple, Washington Hawthorn and Honey Locust.

Who can I call for tree removal or maintenance?

The State of Delaware makes no specific recommendations of contractors, but the city of Wilmington advises that you choose a certified arborist to supervise any work done on trees. These contractors must be certified to work in city limits.

I think I need some work done on my street trees; who can give me the answers?

You may run into issues with your street trees at one time or another. Depending on what the particular problem is, you may get assistance from the city. You can always contact the Delaware City Tree Committee or The Department of Parks and Recreation, and you will be sent in the right direction.

Contact Stein Tree Service for Skilled Tree Removal in Delaware and Pennsylvania

Delaware has made a commitment to promoting tree growth so the state requires proper tree removal when necessary. For a free consultation about tree removal, tree trimming and pruning, emerald ash borer treatment or other tree care services, contact us today.


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