Broadening our Tree Canopy ­­– A Community Effort

TreesCharlotte partners with neighborhood groups across the area to plant trees and help educate people about the many benefits trees offer. The NeighborWoods program is a collaborative effort designed to replenish and sustain the tree canopy, while also offering instruction on proper tree care and maintenance.

Branching Out

Keep Charlotte the City of Trees and beautify your neighborhood by partnering with TreesCharlotte and help fulfill its mission to plant 500,000 trees by 2050. Through the NeighborWoods program, TreesCharlotte, in partnership with Charlotte’s Neighborhood and Business Services, works with neighborhood groups in Charlotte to plant trees, educate residents about proper tree care and maintenance, and replenish the urban tree canopy.  All NeighborWoods trees are purchased by TreesCharlotte with donations.

Typically held on Saturdays during tree planting season (from early October through mid-April), NeighborWoods planting events provide trees to Charlotte residents to plant in their own yard and in neighborhood common areas. Three to six different species may be offered, including small, medium and large maturing varieties that are in 7-gallon containers, about 6 to 10 feet tall at planting.

The NeighborWoods program provides trees, mulch, and a team of tree experts to educate about proper tree planting and maintenance.  At the event, residents participate in a 10 minute clinic  with a designated TreeMaster to learn about choosing the right tree and proper planting and tree care techniques.  All residents sign a pledge to care for the trees after planting.

Successful NeighborWoods events involve strong participation by residents. TreesCharlotte generally limits eligibility to communities in which at least 150 trees can be given away and planted.

TreesCharlotte staff and partners work with volunteers to select the best trees for the project, help arrange sponsors, schedule and manage planting events, develop educational training programs, and offer support for ongoing care and preservation.

Click here to download the TreesCharlotte NeighborWoods informational packet.

Click here to apply online. If you haven’t applied before, you must create a new account.

How to Apply

In order to participate in the NeighborWoods program, neighborhoods must:

  1. Review Program Eligibility. TreesCharlotte’s NeighborWoods program is open to all neighborhood-based organizations within the City of Charlotte. Neighborhoods within Charlotte’s Neighborhood Matching Grant (NMG) eligible geography can receive trees at no cost. Neighborhoods outside of the NMG geography can still participate in the NeighborWoods program through the Tree It Forward option.
    Tree It Forward. Protecting and enhancing our tree canopy is a shared goal and a community priority. TreesCharlotte’s NeighborWoods program depends on corporate and individual donations to fund canopy improvements. Tree It Forward neighborhood participants are requested to contribute a portion of the cost of trees and the event. The requested contribution helps to offset expenses.
  2. Attend a NeighborWoods Pre-Application Workshop. Workshops are held January through March. At the workshop, you’ll learn about TreesCharlotte, review program requirements and receive step-by-step instructions for how to apply. If you’re unable to attend the workshop, you can request an individual meeting by emailing
  3. Complete the Application. Paper applications are available by request. After attending a NeighborWoods workshop, applications need to be submitted by May 1, 2017, in order to be considered for the next season’s NeighborWoods plantings. You’ll find out your neighborhood’s eligibility by July 3. For more information, visit the City’s website.

Benefits of NeighborWoods

NeighborWoods projects help neighborhoods by:

  • Improving property values: Studies show that property values of homes with trees are 5% to 20% higher than similar properties without trees. Source: Arbor Day Foundation
  • Beautification: Trees provided through NeighborWoods are 6 to 10 feet tall, providing instant beautification and inspiration for additional curb appeal improvements.
  • Cooling urban areas: Shade provided by trees has a direct cooling effect on the air temperature for nearby sidewalks, roads, houses and parks.
  • Improving air quality: High temperatures escalate the production of smog and other pollutants. Trees help by reducing the air temperature through shading and carbon monoxide absorption.
  • Reducing traffic speeds: Tree-lined roads provide a sense of enclosure, which causes motorists to drive more slowly and carefully.
  • Energy conservation: By producing shade, trees help conserve energy as they intercept radiant heat.
  • Noise reduction: Trees and shrubs are effective buffers in screening out urban noise.
  • Wildlife habitat: Trees provide critical habitat for birds and diverse wildlife in the urban area.

NeighborWoods FAQ’s

When is the planting season?

The planting season begins around October 15th and ends April 15th each year. TreesCharlotte plants trees when they are dormant, which greatly increases their chance of survival.

Which kinds of trees are available?

Our tree canopy in Charlotte is highly concentrated in a few species, namely willow oaks and crape myrtles. Increasing the types of trees in Charlotte is key to the long term health of the canopy, and it is one of TeesCharlotte’s missions. We have developed, in partnership with our tree growers, a list of 40 tree species for NeighborWoods planting projects. The types of trees available for any given planting project varies depending on soil and drainage conditions, as well as availability from inventories. We usually have 3 to 6 different tree species available for NeighborWoods projects.

Can I select which specific tree I want?

Yes, in most cases we have several varieties of trees available for residents. At each event, we have trained arborists or tree experts (TreeMasters) who will orient residents on how to plant and care for the trees they plant. After this orientation, you will be asked to sign a stewardship pledge indicating your commitment to water and care for the trees you plant. You will then select the trees from the various types available at the event. Trees are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

How big are the trees?

The trees for most NeighborWoods events are 7 gallon containerized trees. They range in height from about 5 feet to 8 feet, and the trunks are about 1 to 1 ½ inches in diameter. The trees are large enough to make an immediate impact and to help ensure tree survival, but not so large to be unmanageable for residents and volunteers.

Will I have help planting my trees?

Yes. TreesCharlotte has a large team of wonderful volunteers who help with NeighborWoods events. Some volunteers are from the event neighborhood and many are from other areas in Charlotte. When you pick up your tree(s), simply let one of the volunteer leaders know that you need help with planting.

How many trees will be provided?

The number of trees available varies, but for most NeighborWoods events residents can select up to 3 trees for planting in their yards assuming there is adequate room for the trees. The TreeMasters providing you with planting instructions will also provide guidelines on where to plant trees in your yard. Trees should be placed with care at adequate distances from the house, property line and each other.