The City of Orlando is pushing forward with a number of changes to its current Tree Protection policies. The changes were pitched to the Families, Parks and Recreation Department Board earlier in 2019.

Proposed changes to Cty Code Chapters 43, 60, and 65 mostly include a change in the consistency of information required for tree reviews, including the size of trees to be regulated and surveyed during review cases.

Minimum tree sizes will be increased from 4-inch caliper to 6-inch caliper trees, making it easier to remove smaller/younger trees and speed the permitting process so applicants don’t have to survey as many trees.

Other changes include:

  • Residential property owners can remove trees without permits or fees if they obtain proper documentation from a certified arborist or Florida landscape architect saying the tree presented some sort of danger.
  • Delete references to “medium tree,” “large tree,” and “tree points” because apparently nobody talks like that anymore.
  • Removing responsibility of reviewing appeals from City Council and appointing it to the Families, Parks and Recreation Director.
  • Replacing the Prohibited Plant List with the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Councils list.

These changes are still being finessed by city staff and must be approved by City Council at two separate upcoming meetings to take effect.

SIDE NOTE: We did a map of all tree removal permits issued between January and April back in 2016 that you can see HERE. If you need some context as to how many tree removal permits are filed with the city.

Brendan O'Connor

Editor in Chief of

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