Tree pruning on public property
Trees are planted and maintained by the Council on behalf of the whole community and they perform the important role of shading our streets and footpaths and making our suburbs more enjoyable places to be.
Council undertakes regular inspections and works to maintain its trees in reserves, foreshore and streets in good health and condition, although sometimes environmental factors can impact trees between scheduled inspections.
If you would like to report an issue, please submit your request below. Please check our tree pruning schedule to find out if the tree is due to be inspected soon. If a Council tree has been inspected in the last six months, additional inspection requests will be prioritised accordingly.
Council engages qualified arborists and contractors to undertake the inspections and carry out any works that are required. Make a public tree request
When we will consider pruning a tree
Tree pruning is completed:
- to provide access for vehicles and pedestrians
- to provide and maintain clearance from overhead electrical equipment inline with industry legislation
- to prevent occupational health, safety and welfare risk to the public
- for the correct development of young trees
- to ensure footpath clearance access
- to ensure sight line clearances for signs, crossovers and traffic lights
Council prunes trees to Australian Standards AS 4373-2007 Pruning of amenity trees, it does not prune to property boundary.
Sometimes the electricity provider, United Energy, will prune trees if branches are too close to overhead power lines. Councils are required to comply with the Electricity Safety (Electric Line Clearance) Regulations 2020.
When we will not prune a tree?
Council will not allow unreasonable pruning of trees for the following reasons:
- for solar access
- to reduce berries, nuts, leaves or other tree material or litter.
- for causing minor allergy and irritant responses
- to minimise obstructions of advertising signage and desired views
- for awnings, verandahs and other projections over public open space
- to reduce the impact from animal waste or noise
- for personal aesthetic preference
Refer to our policy - Bayside City Council - Street and Park Tree Management Policy
Tree removal requests
We make every attempt to retain trees in the streets and parklands for as long as possible and in the best possible condition.
Council will not prune or remove a street or park tree on the basis of naturally occurring shedding to including; leaves, flowers, fruit, seed, twigs or bark. While we acknowledge that trees will shed, this is seen as a natural occurrence. As such we cannot remove a tree on this basis.
When can I request a tree removal?
A street tree will not be removed unless a Council arborist declares it to be:
- dead, diseased or its health is in severe decline
- a risk to the community that cannot be mitigated through management techniques
Refer to Bayside City Council - Street and Park Tree Management Policy for further details about when a tree may be removed other than the reasons above.
To request the inspection of a tree, please select 'Request an inspection for tree health reasons' when completing the below form.
There are over 70 trees throughout Bayside that have habitat salvaged log hollows or chainsaw carved hollows within them. These trees would have otherwise been removed if they weren’t selected for habitat creation. The majority of habitat trees can be found in parks (rather than on nature strips).
All the trees have been identified as suitable for habitat by Arborists using the Method for Assessment of Tree Habitat Status (MATHS), ensuring that trees are risk assessed and are regularly monitored once habitats are installed.
Can I prune a public tree myself?
Council is responsible for all formative and maintenance pruning. Residents and landowners are not permitted to prune Council trees. To maintain and improve the benefits provided by public trees, we maintain and enforce a number of policies and strategies aimed at protecting and enhancing our urban forest.
Any pruning, lopping, removal of branches, or poisoning of a Council tree by a member of the community is considered vandalism and is subject to prosecution under Consolidated Local Law No. 2 (s70) and the Summary Offences Act 1966 s9 (1).
What happens after you request an inspection?
If you report a tree to Council, an arborist will inspect the tree and undertake works if required. After a storm event, it may take a little longer for staff to attend to non-urgent tasks while they make storm damaged trees safe.
We aim to inspect all trees within 15 days of requests being made and we will contact you with the outcome of the inspection – usually via a letter box drop, so please keep an eye on your mail. Check our tree pruning schedule to find out if the tree is due to be inspected soon. If a Council tree has been inspected in the last 6 months, additional inspection requests will be prioritised accordingly.
We will advise you of the outcome of the inspection.
Following an inspection, pruning or even removal works may be required. These works are completed on a priority basis which is determined by the trees health and structure or the condition of any branches that require removal or pruning.