Urban & Community Forestry

Urban and community forestry deals with selecting, planting, and caring for trees in urban areas, communities, parks, and greenways. Trees in urban areas and communities provide a myriad of benefits to the public ranging from controlling storm water to conserving electricity to improving air quality. Special tree varieties called cultivars are often developed and selected for their ability to enhance landscaping, increase property value, or serve specific purposes such as providing shade or aesthetic beauty. Qualities such as form, flower color, fall foliage, size, and shape determine which cultivars are chosen for given areas.

Through its Urban Forestry Committee, the Pennsylvania Forestry Association often publishes articles about urban and community forestry in its magazine, Pennsylvania Forests. Here, counties, communities, organizations, and homeowners can find or share valuable information on the right trees for the right places and on planting and caring for such trees. Many additional publications are available through other organizations.

PFA also provides contact information and referrals to organizations such as the Department of Conservation and Environmental Resources (DCNR) Bureau of Forestry, which provides grants and technical assistance to homeowners, municipalities, and others. The Pennsylvania Urban and Community Forestry Council (PAUCF) offers competitive grants for street tree inventories, municipal tree maintenance, and purchasing and planting trees on public land.

The PFA Urban Forestry Committee is chaired by Rachel Reyna, Section Chief of the Rural and Community Forestry Section in the DCNR Bureau of Forestry.

Helpful Resources:

Bureau of Forestry

Pennsylvania Community Forests (PAUCF)

TreeVitalize

Tree Resources Guide