'Co-Op' Tree Planting Program

Portland’s ‘Co-Op’ Tree Planting program is just one of our tree planting options, often the quickest and most flexible way to get a tree planted. We often have an extensive tree planting list of both replacement and new tree locations along with finite resources to fund new trees. With the ‘Co-Op’ program you can assist with selecting and getting a new tree planted. There could be street-tree locations where we have certain tree types in mind.

The City of Portland’s ‘Co-Op’ Tree Planting program is a tree-planting partnership where Portland residents purchase a tree at one of three local nurseries*: O’Donal’s Nurseries & Skillin’s Nurseries on the mainland and Lausier’s Family Gardens on Peaks Island. Portland’s Forestry or contractor will pick up the tree and properly plant it for you. Trees must be planted within the street right of way (esplanade or tree belt) or close to, near the back of sidewalk, ‘setback’ from overhead utility lines in view of the public. Trees will not be planted in side or back yards as part of this project.

Peaks Island residents* - use Lausier’s Family Gardens on Welsh Street.

Trees need to be purchased and the registration form received by Monday June 1st and trees planted during the month of June only. 

The goal is to plant the 'Right tree - in the Right space'.

Residents purchase the tree at one of the ‘Co-Op Nurseries’ before June 1st and the Forestry crew picks up the tree at the nursery and properly plant the tree in June. ‘Co-Op’ Nurseries supply quality plant material, often at discount to the ‘Co-Op’ Program and provides a guarantee. Nurseries will care for your tree until it is picked up and delivered to the planting site.

Step 1: Site & Tree Selection
Review recommended tree list, web references and consult with Portland Forestry or Co-­Op nursery staff as needed to select the right tree for the location.  Keep in mind the desired tree characteristics along with the existing site conditions. 

Step 2: Tree Purchase
Visit your local nursery and check out the trees on your list. Once you purchase your tree, the nursery will tag it and set aside until planted in early June.

Step 3: Registration Form
We need to have your form in order to plant ! Return the Co-Op Program Registration Form  to Portland Forestry prior to June 1st to 212 Canco Road, Portland ME 04103, email to trees@portlandmaine.gov.

Portland 'CO-op' tree planting Guidelines

  • Trees can be planted in Portland within the street ‘right of way’, in tree-wells, esplanades or setback behind the sidewalk. Setback tree planting should be close to the street as possible while avoiding overhead utility lines. 
  • Location - Tree sites should be 10' away from intersections, utility poles, hydrants, driveways and traffic signs or signals. Avoid underground utilities, gas, water, electric, traffic signal and sewer laterals by a minimum of 4’ with 6’ preferred. 
Sidewalk tree planting grow space requirements: >3.5’ from curb x & remaining sidewalk needs to be ADA accessible. All tree locations are sent to ‘Dig Safe Systems’ for clearance prior to planting. ‘Set back’ panting behind the sidewalk on lawn area is best along heavy traffic roadways or where overhead utilities exist. NOTE – private underground utilities, underground irrigation systems and dog fences are the responsibility of the property owner.

  • Tree Selection - Street-trees are selected from our Recommended Tree List, trees in set-back or lawn locations are more flexible. Tree sizes range from 1.5” to 2.0” caliper for shade trees, 4-6’ height for conifers.
  • Purchase Trees by June 1st at one of the local Co-Op Nurseries.
  • Planting is limited to 1 tree per year.

Portland Co-Op Tree Planting Nurseries: Contact Info 

Co-Op Nurseries  


The City of Portland reserves the right to refuse tree planting due to poor site conditions, presence of underground or overhead utilities, or trees that do not meet city standards. Replacement trees may be adjusted away from utilities, old stumps, or roots.