The Division of Forestry has created a guide to help explain the importance
of these simple yet important acts that keep trees healthy:
• Trees are not bike posts.
Locking bikes, or other things, to trees can easily damage the bark of a tree, which trees use to transport nutrients and water up to higher limbs and to grow taller and strong.
• Trees need water.
If it has been more than a week since a good rainstorm, trees need watering. Trees require about 40 gallons of water a week – almost a full rain barrel.
• Save a tree, kill a volcano.
Mulch can provide great benefits for trees if applied correctly but can also be detrimental if done incorrectly. Generally speaking, no more than 2-4 inches should be placed around a tree, and 2-4 inches of space should be left between the mulch and the trunk of the tree. Too much mulch is unnecessary and can prevent water from filtering to the roots.
• Trees need trimming.
Young trees should be pruned so they can focus on developing their core strength rather than on their branches. Larger trees close to power lines should also be trimmed. Owners, not the City or ComEd, are responsible for trimming trees on their property, but not on the parkway. Trimming trees can help prevent power outages.