Trees and woodlands

Looking after Edinburgh's trees

Trees and woodlands are a vital part of Edinburgh's landscape. They enhance the city's environment. We manage trees in

  • parks
  • open spaces
  • woodlands
  • along streets
  • road verges.

Trees on Council land

If you have an enquiry regarding trees or woodland on Council owned land, please contact the Forestry Service using the details at the bottom of the page.

For out of hours emergencies

0131 200 2000

Trees on privately owned land

Find out about tree preservation orders, trees in conservation areas and 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. 

Trees in the City is a set of policies with an action plan which we use to guide the management of our trees and woodlands 

Download Trees in the City action plan (PDF, 724 KB)  
Download a summary of our policies (PDF, 53 KB)

Schedule of works

When the Forestry Service inspects a city tree and finds it needs work, it raises a work order in one of the priority catagories

  • urgent - completed within 48 hours
  • high - withinn 28 days
  • medium - within 3 months 
  • low - within 12 months.

It marks trees that are to be

  • removed with a white cross
  • pruned with a white spot.

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 notable and exceptional, whether this is due to great age, size or historical and cultural significance. 

View Edinburgh's trees with a story

Valuing Edinburgh's Urban Trees

Valuing Edinburgh’s Urban Trees is a survey by Forest Research on the state of Edinburgh's urban trees in 2017. It examined the 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.

Download Valuing Edinburgh's Urban Trees (PDF, 2MB)

Biodiversity action plan

Edinburgh Biodiversity Action Plan 2016 - 2018 (PDF, 3.43MB)

Do you have any comments about this page?

Help us improve

  • The City of Edinburgh Council will only use this email address to respond to any issues raised.