Workers prepare to prune a street tree. Workers prepare to prune a street tree.

Submit a Tree Work Permit

Download and fill out the Wilmington Tree Work Permit.

A permit is required for street tree planting, street tree removal and pruning of tree branches larger than 2” in diameter. Root pruning of street trees and any disturbance or compaction with the tree protection zone requires a permit.

The permit is free, requires a site inspection, and takes approximately two weeks to process. You must obtain a permit to ensure that proper tree care is given to city trees. Street tree work completed without a permit is subject to fines and replanting requirements.

A permit is not required for private property trees.

Permitting Process

  1. A property owner submits a tree permit to the Public Works Urban Forest Administrator (UFA).
  2. The UFA performs a site visit and either approves or denies the permit.
  3. The UFA returns a written permit to the property owner via email or mail.
  4. Denied permits can be appealed by submitting a written request clearly outlining the reason for appeal within 10 days to the Department of Public Works.
  5. Permit appeals are scheduled for the Tree Commission meeting.


  1. The City receives a tree complaint or the Department of Licenses & Inspections notices a tree concern while out.
  2. The Deparment of Licenses & Inspections and the Urban Forest Administrator inspect the tree in question. The UFA provides a citation recommendation to L&I and L&I issues the citation.
  3. The owner receives a citation which provides instructions on the number of days allotted for action.
  4. Citation appeals are submitted to L&I and scheduled to be heard at the Board of License & Inspection Review.

Recommended Trees and Helpful Tips

Recommended Urban Trees

How to Plant New Trees

How to Prune Mature Trees

Avoiding Tree Damage During Construction

City Trees Contact Numbers

Street Tree Concerns:
(302) 576-3878

General Tree Questions:
Herbert W. White
Urban Forest Administrator
(302) 576-2582