Trees and Forestry

We plant 500 trees per year along streets and in parks. We use a wide variety of types and sizes that fit each location. It's our goal that every home in Brantford has at least one municipal tree. We encourage you to plant trees too!

Tree maintenance

We are responsible for all trees on City property. Upkeep is organized and booked in priority order. Trees along roads, in busy areas, and next to hydro lines need more upkeep than trees in parks and woodlands. We have three arborists that do tree inspections and we hire contractors to do the work. Our current tree maintenance contractor is Davey Tree Expert Company.

We have three maintenance programs for tree safety:

Hydro maintenance
All trees next to hydro lines on every street in Brantford are regularly pruned. It takes a few years to prune all the trees for enough clearance. 
Emerald Ash Borer removal
We remove all ash trees from City streets and parks because of the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB). An EAB is an invasive beetle that feeds on and destroys ash trees. We've removed almost all ash trees and will continue replanting and stumping over the next few years. We will also be looing at ash tree removals in woodlots and natural areas where they may pose a risk to trails, private property and/or buildings. Trees needing removal are marked with orange paint. Learn more about the Emerald Ash Borer.
Work orders
Work orders respond to needs from residents concerning trees. Call us or email us  if you have any of the following concerns regarding trees:
  • safety
  • dead branches
  • a dead tree
  • low branches
  • bug or disease problems
  • requests for a new tree

If we can't solve your problem over the phone or by email, we will make a work order so a certified arborist can inspect the situation. We inspect work orders in priority sequence. 

Tree by-laws

The City has the following tree bylaws:

Trees on private property

Learn more about the City's Private Tree By-law  that protects certain rare species and a few woodlots on private property. Brantford has 11 rare species and 32 protected woodlots. 

An Application to Remove Trees on Private Property is required if you wish to complete tree work under the following conditions:

  • property designated as a protected woodlot
  • wetland
  • heritage area
  • where rare or protected species exist

Completed applications can be emailed to Parks and Recreation staff for review. Please call 519-759-4150 if you have any questions or concerns about your application.

When to hire an arborist

When branches reach too high overhead and are difficult to trim it may be time to seek professional help. There are several guides we suggest in helping find an arborist:

Check for an Arborist Certification

The International Society of Arboriculture runs tests to skilled experts covering all aspects of tree care.  Visit the International Society of Arboriculture website for info on why hiring a certified Arborist is important.

Ask for proof of insurance

You can phone an insurance company listed on the document to confirm the accuracy of the insurance policy.


Ask for local references doing similar work to what you are looking to do. Also ask if they are members in a professional organization.


We suggest a minimum of three estimates to make sure you're getting the right price. When choosing an arborist, weigh the credentials, references, and quality of workmanship you can expect from each estimate.

Be careful of door-to-door sales for tree pruning or removal

Most decent tree service companies are too busy to ask work this way.  Wrong or poor quality tree work can take years to correct itself, if at all. 

Tree stumps and pegs

Pegs are standing trunks of a large tree that we've partially removed. The trunks are stable and left at a height below the lowest set of power lines because they do not pose a risk. We remove about three to four pegs a year. We remove pegs based on the date of the tree removal, oldest to newest. Due to the Emerald Ash Borer and more tree removals, wait times for peg removals have grown.
We only remove stumps when the ground is thawed and based on the order of tree removal, oldest to newest. If you have sprouts growing on the stump, please feel free to trim them off with hand pruners or loppers. We do not allow the use of power tools on City property. Due to the Emerald Ash Borer and high volume of ash tree removals, we currently have a higher volume of stumps.


We don't like to waste and are happy to share the mulch from our tree and stump removals. You can pick up as much free mulch as you need between April and November. It is available on a first-come-first-serve basis. There may not be any available from time to time. Please note that we do not place mulch behind any gates. View pick-up locations below.

  • Cockshutt Park (35 Sherwood Drive), located behind Arnold Anderson Stadium along the parking lot
  • Public Works (10 Earl Avenue), located before the parking lot on your left

General Forest Management Plan

We are proud to have completed the General Forest Management Plan which is a guiding document for the sustainable management of forests on City land. Many areas of public land have beautiful forests that are home to many native plants and animals that add to the ecological diversity of Brantford.  To ensure that this is continued, we strive to work with the public in the preservation of these important public assets. 

Pest Management

European gypsy moth
The European Gypsy Moth is a non-native defoliating insect that feeds on a variety of tree species found in southern Ontario. In Brantford and surrounding areas, the European gypsy moth can be problematic in forested areas with oak dominant communities such as Mohawk Park. Learn more about the European Gypsy Moth control measures.