Protecting the urban forest in our Tree City USA

Date: June 7, 2018

We are proud of our trees in Ferguson Township.  Did you know we own and manage more than 4,000 street trees as well as trees in Township-owned parks?

If you remember the story "The Giving Tree," a tree sacrificed her apples, branches, and trunk to a boy who kept taking from the tree until all she had left to give was a stump to sit on when he grew old. Our trees are all giving trees, too, but without those sacrifices. Because they give so much to our residents – oxygen to help us breathe and shade to keep us cool; clean water and water conservation, as well as enhanced property values  – the Ferguson Township Code of Ordinances has been written to protect our trees  Learn more

We follow a five-year plan to care for, preserve and plant new trees

For the second consecutive year, the Arbor Day Foundation has named Ferguson Township a Tree City USA because of the initiatives we take to care for our trees. The Township met four standards:

1. We named a tree commission and employ a full-time Arborist 
"Someone must be legally responsible for the care of all trees on city- or town-owned property." The Township has e a full-time Arborist and a Tree Commission of five members.

2. We adopted a Tree Ordinance
The Township's Tree Ordinance and Resolutions give the Tree Commission and Public Works Department authority to manage street trees, approve the list of street tree species that can be planted, and to regulate other arbor work. 

3. We manage a Community Forestry Program with an Annual Budget of at least $2 per Capita
Ferguson Township has a formal shade tree maintenance program in place to help ensure healthy and vibrant trees in our neighborhoods. Included in the program are trees within the Township right-of-way — mostly in newer subdivisions — typically located in the grass area between the street and the sidewalk. The maintenance program involves maintaining an inventory of the trees, performing routine pruning, and replacing trees that have died.

4. We observe Arbor Day in the Township and recite an official Arbor Day Proclamation.

There’s a season for planting and a reason we manage trees the way we do. This is the time of year when Ferguson Township asks the following of residents:

  • Let us know if you have a dead or healthy street tree that needs attention. 
    Before you consider removing, treating or otherwise altering what may be a Township tree, please consult the Ferguson Township Tree Ordinance for guidelines, or contact the Ferguson Township Arborist at (814) 238-4651.  Ferguson Township's street and park trees are protected under the Township's Code of Ordinances. Violations of the Tree Ordinance carry a penalty payable by fine and the cost of replacing the tree. Learn more
  • Tell our Arborist if you would like a street tree planted in the spring of 2019. Call Lance King at (814) 238-4651, or email him at
  • Remember not to prune oak trees between now and October 31 unless you have a permit from the Township.
    Ferguson Township has no reported cases of oak wilt this year. The Township put this limitation into place to reduce the risk and spread of oak wilt disease, which could decimate oak trees in your neighborhood unless it is controlled.  Oak trees pruned between April 1 and October 31 are more likely to become infected with oak wilt and die.  Oak Wilt Fact Sheet

Photo Tours of Township Trees
Large Trees
Fall Foliage
Flowering Trees

Tree Updates

  • Our Public Works crews have finished planting trees at Fairbrook Park and Tudek Dog Park.
  • The majority of trees planted at Songbird Sanctuary, our newest park in development on Owens Drive, are doing well. The planting was a project of Ferguson Township Elementary students, their families, and other community volunteers. Learn about the volunteer pollinator project at Songbird Sanctuary.