Trees grow in a delicate balance with their environment. It's important for us all to do our best to protect and maintain them by minimising any changes to that balance, allowing them to remain healthy and live a long life.
We maintain the trees in our City by planting, mulching and pruning trees, treating root damage, assessing unhealthy trees for removal, and managing powerline clearance.
We encourage landowners and residents to assist us in the maintenance of our city’s urban forest by:
- planting trees that are appropriate to the site conditions on their property
- discovering tips on how to help your tree thrive
- reporting acts of tree vandalism to Council.
Tree maintenance requests are one of the most common requests we receive in Port Phillip. Watch the video below to hear Greg and Jack from our Trees team tell you more about what we can and can’t do when it comes to pruning trees.
You can contact us with requests for a street or park tree to be pruned or assessed for removal as well as if you have concerns regarding tree root damage or a general tree enquiry.
Once your request is received, a tree maintenance request will be generated and directed to our Park Services team for action.
Trees on private property
Residents are responsible for ensuring that pedestrian access to paths and traffic sight lines are not blocked by trees and vegetation on their property.
If you would like to undertake tree work or seek advice about tree maintenance on your property, please contact a qualified arborist.
Reporting low-hanging branches
To report low-hanging branches over a footpath from a tree on private property, please call our ASSIST line on 03 9209 6777 with the location and other details, lodge your request using Online Services or the Snap Send Solve app on your phone.
A Local Laws officer will then contact the property owners to request they undertake the pruning in a specified timeframe. Council does not prune back or maintain trees on private property.
Protecting trees on Council land
Trees on Council owned and managed land must be protected from construction works and other activities. This protection is in place to reduce the negative impacts of construction on the health of our trees.
All development works near public trees must follow these requirements:
- Establishment of a Tree Protection Zone (TPZ) for the duration of any works
- Preparation of a Tree Protection Management Plan for all construction related activities where any demolition or construction activity encroaches a TPZ.
The preferred method for installation of underground services within a TPZ is boring.
Public trees cannot be pruned or have branches removed by anyone other than those authorised by Council.
For more details, please see the Tree Protection Fact Sheet (DOCX 86 KB).
Council does not have authority over trees on private property except in exceptional circumstances.
The main exception is when a tree is considered significant under the Local Law No.1 Community Amenity 2013.
The National Trust holds a significant tree register which includes several public trees throughout the City of Port Phillip. To find out if your tree is significant, search the Significant Tree Register.
Residents are required to seek permission to remove or prune significant trees on their property.
Please visit the Significant Tree Permit page for more information and permit application details.
If you have further questions regarding tree protection, please contact us.
Fusarium wilt is a serious disease that affects Canary Island Date Palms in Australia. Council’s tree management staff and tree contractor are familiar with identifying and managing Fusarium Wilt. An inspection of all palms on Council managed land is undertaken annually.
Council is currently working to remove a number of diseased palms throughout Port Phillip.