Nurture our Urban Forest

urban forest

Ku-ring-gai's Urban Forest

Ku-ring-gai’s environment is made up of trees, shrubs and ground cover along with the soil and water that support these - together they create an Urban Forest.

These exist through a network of natural and built, plant and tree systems within both Council Managed Land and private property. Like many cities around the world we recognise our Urban Forest as a vital part of our community, enabling us to create a community that we all want to live in.

Our Urban Forest helps:

  • Reduce urban heat and energy consumption.
  • Reduce air pollution.
  • Increase land and property values.
  • Increase social health and wellbeing.
  • Store and sequester carbon.
  • Stabilise land and reduce erosion.
  • Reduce stormwater flows and nutrient loads.
  • Increase habitat for wildlife therefore improving biodiversity.

Visit The Liveable Street* for a great video summary of how trees help us on a daily basis.

Which Plant Where program

More greenery in our towns and cities is imperative for healthy minds, healthy bodies and a healthy environment.

A key challenge for greening Australia’s urban environment is to ensure that future plantings are made with trees, shrubs and turf that can tolerate the climate conditions that will occur in the near future.

The Which Plant Where program is a five-year research program that will investigate how well current landscaping species will cope under the more extreme climates that Australia’s cities will face and investigate opportunities for new species and varieties for the urban context. Ku-ring-gai Council is proud to be part of this exciting program and will be planting as we seek to plant particular species suited to local climate conditions, as part of the new Robert Pymble Park (Masterplan to be shared soon). 

Urban Forest Policy 

Council has recently created an Urban Forest Policy(PDF, 657KB) and captured new Urban Forest (Canopy) mapping. This information will be used to create an Urban Forest Monitoring Program and an Urban Forest Strategy to help manage this key resource.

Urban Forest replenishment program

Since the early 2000s, Council has been committed to managing Ku-ring-gai’s urban tree canopy. We have focused on:

  • Maintaining and increasing canopy.
  • Ensuring trees on Council managed land (parks, nature strips, sportsfields, bushland and golf courses) include a range of trees varying in life span, height  and ability to support wildlife habitat.

The NSW Government 5 Million Trees initiative aims to increase canopy cover across Greater Sydney to 40% by 2030. Although Ku-ring-gai has one of the highest canopy cover in the region, with increased pressures from urbanisation and an aging tree canopy, ongoing management and replenishment of our canopy is essential.

Urban Forest Strategy - Have your say

Council is developing an Urban Forest Strategy which will define how Council manages and improves our urban forest for current and future generations.

To support the development of the Strategy, we need our community’s help to ensure their opinions and insights are considered so that Council can deliver an urban forest that provides maximum benefits to all.

Comments closed Monday 1 November 2021.

Get involved

Would you like to be involved in the management of Council's Urban Forest? Council is responsible for removal, pruning or replacement planting works required on trees located on nature strips or on Council managed land such as parks, sportsfields, bushland and golf courses. Council relies on residents to help by reporting concerns to Council. You can help by undertaking the following.

Report concerns with a tree on Council managed land

Contact Council to report concerns with your street tree. Check the Assessment Guidelines to Prune or Remove Trees on Private Property and Council Managed Land(PDF, 127KB) first to learn about how Council's Arborist manage and maintain trees on Council managed land.

To request inspection of a tree on Council managed land, contact Customer Service on 9424 0000 or email your concerns with photos and your contact phone number to  The inspecting Officer will call you to advise the outcome of the inspection.

Request a street tree

Contact Council to request a street tree to be planted at your property. A Council Tree Management Officer will inspect your nature strip and determine a suitable location and tree species. The Officer will take into consideration the planting space available, the location of powerlines, driveways, motorist and pedestrian sightlines and other impacts that need to be considered to determine suitable planting locations.

To request a new street tree or tree on Council managed land, contact Customer Service on 9424 0000 or email your concerns with photos and your contact phone number to  The inspecting Officer will call you to advise the outcome of the inspection.

Water and monitor your newly planted street trees

Apply water to your new street tree and it will appreciate your efforts. Water added to the soil under the tree in between rain periods will support the health of the tree. As a guide, simply water the tree with a bucket of water if you notice the ground is particularly dry.

Nurture the urban forest on your property

Do you have trees, shrubs or bushland on your property? Nurture your urban forest on your property.

Plant new trees on your property. Visit a local plant nursery for advice on suitable tree species for your property.

If you need advice on trees on your property, contact a Consulting Arborist that is a member of the Institute of Consulting Arboriculturists (IACA) to inspect and provide advice on the health of your trees. If the Consulting Arborist suggest management options where maintenance is required, contact a professional Tree Contractor that is a member of the Tree Contractors Association (TCAA) to engage a qualified and insured tree contractor to undertake works on your tree.

Before engaging a Tree Contractor to undertake works, check with Council if a permit is required for the work.


Learn more about how you can volunteer by joining a Streetcare, Parkcare or Bushcare group to help care for community land in Ku-ring-gai.  

*The Liveable Street is thanks to Inner West Council.