Tree Protection


Safety Harbor is home to an extensive tree canopy including many protected and established trees. Below is information regarding our tree regulations, tree pruning, and tree related activities. 

Tree Ordinance
In 2015, the City Commission adopted a tree ordinance (Article X of the City of Safety Harbor Comprehensive Zoning and Land Development Code) including:

  • a protected tree list
  • minimum tree planting requirements
  • regulations for tree removal and replacement
  • pruning standards 
  • procedures for enforcement of the tree ordinance

A link to the tree ordinance is below:
Safety Harbor Tree Ordinance

Tree Permit

The removal of protected trees requires a tree removal permit. A link to the permit is below:

Protected Tree or Grand Tree Removal Permit

Tree Pruning

Tree pruning is required to be performed to American National Standards called ANSI 300 Part 1: Tree, Shrub, and other Woody Plant Maintenance Standard Practices. Improper tree pruning can lead to damage where rot and decay can enter the tree. A link to a brochure is below: Tree Pruning Brochure

Tree Planting

Below is a link to information regarding tree planting.
Tree Planting Details
Planting and Establishing Trees

Free Tree Event

The 2022 tree giveaway event is scheduled for Saturday, October 8th, 2022, at the Public Works Department located at 1200 Railroad Avenue starting at 8:00 am until 11:00 am. Property owners within Safety Harbor may stop by and pick up two trees. The following ornamental, flowering, and shade trees will be available: Pink, Purple, and White Crape Myrtles, Live Oak, Bald Cypress, Southern Magnolia, Red Cedar, Redbud, Cedar Elm, Chinese Pistache, Chickasaw Plum, Yaupon Holly, and Walter's Viburnum. Trees are first come, first serve so don't forget to arrive early!

Street Tree Planting Program

The City of Safety Harbor is continuing the Annual Street Tree Program. City residents can sign up to have a free shade tree planted in their front yards. All requests will be reviewed to ensure the selected tree is appropriate for the requested location and will not conflict with utilities.

Available trees include Southern Live Oak, Gumbo Limbo, Bald Cypress, and Eagleston Holly. The trees will be planted by the city however applicants are responsible for watering the trees during the establishment period. A tree watering schedule will be provided to each applicant. 

The deadline to apply is February 7, 2024. Applications and waivers can be downloaded here:
Street Tree Planting Application
Tree Planting Waiver

A signed waiver form is required at time of application to allow staff and a planting contractor to determine a proper location and plant the trees. Available trees include Southern live oak, sand live oak, bald cypress, pignut hickory, and winged elm. Trees are available  in 15 and 30 gallon containers. Please select two tree choices since one may not be available. Residents who apply for the program are responsible for watering the trees.  All requests will be reviewed to confirm the tree can thrive in the requested location.  

Below is a link to the City’s tree related frequently asked questions.
Tree FAQs
The City Commission adopted a Grand Tree Ordinance on December 20, 2021. Below is a link to the City's tree related frequently asked questions about the Grand Tree Ordinance.       
Grand Tree Ordinance FAQ

Tree Consultation
If you would like the City Arborist to provide information regarding a tree on your property such as a species determination, health assessment, or pruning recommendations, please contact:

James Ryan, City Arborist

(727) 724-1555 ex.1303