About the Program
The Urban and Community Forestry Program at the City of Boerne provides care and maintenance of trees on City-owned properties and advocates for the preservation of existing trees on residential and commercial development projects within the City limits. Trees provide many important benefits to the community, including energy savings, increased property values, improved air quality, reduced flooding potential, wildlife habitat, and shade leading to a reduction in the heat island effect of urban areas.
City of Boerne Tree Ordinance
The City of Boerne Tree Ordinance (Section 8.3 of the Unified Development Code) is instrumental in fulfilling the goals of the Urban and Community Forestry Program. The purpose of the tree preservation ordinance is to:
- Enhance the quality of life and the present and future health, safety, and welfare of all citizens.
- Minimize the negative impact of land development on environmental quality, namely native habitat, ambient temperatures, air quality, and soil stability.
- Preserve and protect the sense of place associated with the Texas Hill Country, including viewsheds.
- Promote a healthy urban forest within the City and its extraterritorial jurisdiction and ensure proper planting and care of trees.
- Establish requirements for tree preservation, tree removal, and associated mitigation.
- Facilitate preservation and protection of existing trees, roots, and soil conditions during design and construction and prohibit the indiscriminate clearing of property.
- Establish requirements to reduce the impact of insects and disease on the urban forest with a focus on reducing the spread of oak wilt.
Forestry Program Initiatives
Oak Wilt Prevention and Management
The City of Boerne works to limit and eliminate the impact of oak wilt, an infectious disease that disables the tree’s water-conducting system and leads to its eventual death. The City’s efforts include codified ordnances for tree maintenance and treatment, as well as an educational campaign for homeowners and contractors.
Oak Wilt Incentive Program
The City of Boerne also offers an Oak Wilt Incentive Program, which provides financial assistance for residents seeking treatment or removal of impacted trees.