Atlanta Arbor Tree Care Specialist, LLC

Decatur Tree Ordinance

Decatur Tree Ordinance – Within the City Limits

Permit Required: Yes

The City of Decatur has opted for a newer outlook on greenspace and the need for trees on public and private lands. Therefore, the City of Decatur adopted a new Tree Ordinance for homeowners that will go into effect on 7/7/14. Permits are needed in these circumstances:

  • Property owners in residential districts would like to remove dead, diseased, or hazardous trees (with moderate to high-risk rating) and or
  • Property owners in residential districts would like to remove up to three healthy protected trees within an 18 month period.

According to the Tree Canopy Conservation Ordinance, property owners in residential zoning districts are allowed to remove up to 3 healthy, protected trees during an 18 month period. A tree information permit shall be filed with the City to track the reasons for the tree removal, the amount of tree canopy removed and a plan for replanting if applicable. No recompense or replanting is required if only 3 trees are removed within the 18 month period. You can fill out a permit at any time online.

Specimen Trees:

The City of Decatur has compiled an acceptable Species list that home and business owners may refer to when they begin to start the removal and replacement process.


All residential and commercial spaces must maintain at least 45% canopy cover. Living trees >=4” DBH are considered protected; however, up to 3 trees per 18 months will be permitted if the resultant canopy coverage is greater than 45%. Dead, dying or hazardous trees must be diagnosed by the city arborist.

Fee: $50 for residential removal; $80 for commercial removal


City Arborist: Kay Evanovich



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