Results from the survey will guide the development of the Urban Forest Master Plan
Last summer, the City of Charlotte conducted a 10-question survey for residents about trees. The purpose of the survey was to gain insight into the opinions citizens have about trees, tree initiatives and tree maintenance in Charlotte, which will form the basis of the Urban Forest Master Plan. A total of 2,846 people responded to the survey.
Residents overwhelmingly held high value for Charlotte’s trees and easily identified many benefits provided by a robust canopy. It was evident that they also realized that the city’s trees need support through educating the public about proper tree care. Many residents expressed frustration with current tree ordinances, policies and practices.
Benefits & Challenges
According to Charlotte residents, the top benefits of trees are to improve the quality of life, clean the air, provide shade and cool surroundings, help define Charlotte’s character and to provide wildlife habitat. The top challenges with trees were cracking sidewalks and pavement, safety problems created from trees and limbs falling, underground pipe problems and tree roots.
Caring for Trees
When asked what information residents would find helpful in maintaining trees in their own yards, the top items were how/when if pruning is needed, cankerworms and other pests, what trees to plant and tips on basic tree care.
Charlotteans strongly reported that they would like to participate in helping to take care of the trees in Charlotte, saying that they were “very willing” to water, weed and mulch trees in front of their house (1,724 respondents); support the city dedicating more funding to manage Charlotte’s trees (1,703); support policy changes that benefit trees (1,646); and plant new trees on their property (1,494).
The City of Charlotte’s full Urban Forest Master Plan will be released later this year.