Plant a Tree

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Trees add beauty to our community and increase the real estate value of our property. They provide shade that helps us conserve energy and keep Rochester cooler. Plus, they provide homes for wildlife, absorb noise, and reduce air pollution.

Look at all the ways trees help manage stormwater: 

  • Tree roots hold soil to prevent erosion and promote the infiltration of stormwater, which in turn helps recharge our drinking water supply.
  • The leaves and bark on trees catch rain from the first quarter-inch of each rainfall event, intercepting between 500 and 760 gallons per year, further reducing the volume of runoff.
  • Trees also slow the velocity of rain before it reaches the ground, reducing runoff rates and erosion potential.
  • A mature tree can transpire (“sweat”) 100 gallons per day.
  • Water taken up by the tree from the soil increases water storage potential in the soil and lengthens the amount of time before rainfall becomes runoff, again, reducing runoff volumes and rates.
  • Roots also take up some stormwater, reducing the amount of runoff reaching impervious surfaces, where it collects pollution. 
  • Trees also improve water quality by absorbing nutrients such as nitrogen and remove or break down metals, pesticides, and solvents.

Residents, developers, builders, and landscapers can promote a cleaner environment by keeping trees in mind when making landscaping plans. Where existing trees can be saved, do so. Where none exist, consider planting trees in boulevards or neighborhood open spaces.

Visit the Forestry Division of the Rochester Park and Recreation Department webpage to learn more about:

  • Planting boulevard trees
  • Working on boulevard trees
  • Citizen Forester training opportunities
  • Citizen Pruner program
  • Emerald Ash Borer and Dutch Elm Disease management