Environmental Strategy

Tree planting

In our environmental strategies both Broadland District and South Norfolk Councils have committed to planting a tree for each resident by 2025.

Trees and woodland are hugely beneficial in a number of ways; they help fight climate change by absorbing carbon dioxide, they are home to a wealth of wildlife, they can lessen the effects of flooding, they absorb pollutants so can improve air quality and they are good for our health and wellbeing.

We are looking at planting on our own land and supporting parish and town councils, community groups, landowners and residents to plant trees too.

We are following an approach of ensuring that the right tree is planted in the right place. We will be planting both whips (saplings) and standards (larger established trees), extending woodland where we can and allowing natural regeneration where appropriate.

If you would like to be involved please contact us.

Which species should I plant?

Most trees grow in a range of conditions, but some will prefer particular soil types. You could look at other trees that are doing well in your neighbourhood.

The Woodland Trust have produced a helpful guide to native species.

The Forestry Commission has a tool for finding the right tree in a changing climate.

Remember it’s best to use UK sourced and grown trees to prevent the spread of imported pests and diseases.

Where and why you are planting will influence which species is best; native trees with nuts and berries such as Rowan Hazel and Beech are great to attract and  native oaks and willows support the greatest number of species at over 400 species each.

How to plant a tree

The tree planting season runs from November to March, this is when the trees are dormant so there is less chance of them being damaged. Container grown trees can be planted at any time of year. But planting lots of trees outside of this season is not recommended.

Before you start planting, it’s a good idea to mark out where the trees will go and to clear the site of plants that will compete with the saplings. Its recommended to plant the trees about 2m apart and wavy lines look more natural than straight ones.

There is more information about different planting techniques from the Woodland Trust

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) also have some useful tree planting guidance.

Where to plant the trees

There are lots of things to consider; where you’re planting in relation to your house and your neighbours and the full size of the tree.

For larger planting projects there are more things to consider; ownership of land, is the land suitable, buildings and services, fencing and stock, the local community and footpaths and access. The Woodland Trust have more detail on where to plant trees on their website.

How to care for your trees

It’s really important to look after your trees after you have planted them, especially in the first few years.

Make sure you tell people where they are so there’s no accidental damage, weeding is important with a 1m radius, watering is required in dry conditions and tree guards should be checked.

Tree Warden networks

There are two independent Tree Warden networks in our districts, find out more about Tree Wardens

Further information

The Tree Council have a comprehensive guide to tree planting

Also the Forest Research Government website has information on Urban trees.

External grants for tree planting

At the moment  we are working on a package of advice and funding for groups wanting to plant trees. We will add more information here once this project has been developed.

There are many other grant schemes for tree planting from a variety of organisations. We have listed some below.

If you successfully apply for a grant listed we’d still like to hear from you. We can still count the trees that you have planted towards our targets for our districts.

Please see the links below offering funding for tree planting:

Free trees from the Woodland Trust for community groups

For schools from Carbon Footprint 

Tree appeal for schools

Woodland Creation grants for larger sites  

Free trees from Eforests for nature reserves, wildlife trusts and community woodland groups 

Grants for orchards

Tree Council grants for young people or for schools