Trees and woodlands

Looking after Edinburgh's trees

Trees and woodlands are a vital part of Edinburgh's landscape. They play an important role in enhancing the city's environment. We manage trees in parks, open spaces, woodlands and along streets and road verges.

Trees on Council land

If you have an enquiry regarding leaves, broken or overhanging branches, or woodlands on Council owned land, please contact the Forestry Service.

0131 311 7074

forestry.service@edinburgh.gov.uk

For out of hours emergencies

0131 200 2000

Trees on privately owned land

Find out about tree preservation orders, trees in conservation areas or more about trees on privately owned land.

Protecting trees and woodlands

We have a legal duty to protect trees in the city, and do this by issuing Tree Preservation Orders. 

You can download 'Trees in the city', a set of policies with an action plan which will be used to guide the management of the Council's trees and woodlands below. 

Schedule of Works

When the Forestry Service carry out a tree inspection and, if the tree requires some remedial attention, a work order will be raised. These work orders are prioritised into four risk categories

  • urgent
  • high
  • medium
  • low.

Orders identified as urgent will be completed within 48 hours.

We aim to complete high risk work within 28 days, and those identified as medium risk within 3 months. 

Trees marked with a white cross have been identified as either high or medium risk. These trees do not pose an immediate risk to people or property and will be removed in order of priority. 

Trees marked with a white spot have been identified as low risk. The white spot indicates that work is required to protect the tree for example, removal of dead wood. We aim to complete this within 12 months of the work order being raised.

Download a list of tree works that are planned across the city below. 

Keep up to date with how the forestry service are looking after Edinburgh's trees by following Edinburgh Outdoors on Twitter and Facebook

Dutch elm disease 

There are almost 15,000 elms trees in Edinburgh.  They are slowly being attacked and killed by Dutch elm disease.  To monitor the spread of this disease the city's elms trees are surveyed each summer. Trees marked with a yellow or orange cross have Dutch elm disease. Any trees showing signs of the disease are removed.

Heritage trees

Heritage trees are those which are notable and exceptional for a number of reasons, whether this is due to great age, size or historical and cultural significance. 

Woodland habitat action plan

Woodlands within the Edinburgh area are a valuable resource for people and wildlife. The Woodland Habitat Action Plan, part of the Edinburgh Biodiversity Action Plan (2010-2015), details key objectives and actions to protect, enhance and expand woodlands in the city. 

Valuing Edinburgh's Urban Forest

Read more about a recent survey carried out by Forest Research on the current state of Edinburgh's urban trees.  This survey examined what benefits Edinburgh's urban trees have on the people living here and used location, species health and size to calculate the scientific benefits provided by trees.

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