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Tree Protection

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Mark Miller, Senior Arborist
City Hall Annex
1565 First Street, 2nd Floor
Sarasota, FL 34236
Monday – Friday, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
941-365-2200 ext. 36536
(After Hours Contact: 941-954-4125 or Lawrence E. Burleson, Code Compliance Manager, 941-894-2813)

If you are a homeowner in the City and would like to be added to a list of potential recipients of free, mature canopy or palm trees in the future click here Resident Tree Request

If you are a developer interested in coordinating with a citizen that is interested in receiving mitigation trees click here Developer App

Report a tree-related violation here (Under "Type of Violation" choose Tree removal/Tree Protection)

 A permit is required to remove or relocate any tree (other than citrus) greater than four and one-half inches in diameter at breast height, and most palms. While there is no fee to remove "nuisance" species of trees such as Melaleuca (punk trees), Australian pine, and certain others, you must obtain a permit prior to their removal. Only citrus trees do not require permits (Excluding the Mango tree.)

To view diagrams illustrating new changes to tree protection requirements click here.

The City of Sarasota adopted Ordinance No. 17-5205 on June 19, 2017 amending the tree mitigation requirements with regard to the allowed location(s) of replacement trees and permission given to the City to monitor trees on private property.

The City of Sarasota has undergone an update to regulations regarding tree protection and removals, with formal approval of Ordinance 16-5173 being passed by the City Commission on July 5, 2016.

To view the fees and changes related to tree protection click here.

Fines for failure to post a tree removal permit and for failure to provide tree protection barriers was also adopted on July 5, 2016 via Ordinance 16-5175.

View the tree permit application requirements then submit an application in person to:

City of Sarasota
Building Department
City Hall Annex, 2nd Floor
1565 First Street
Sarasota, FL 34236

To search for tree permits search by Application, Permit Number or by Address at our Online Portal.

POSTING REQUIREMENTS: a weather-proof protected copy of the tree removal permit shall be posted at the site proposed for the tree removal. The permit must be displayed on the site prior to the removal of any trees and remain on the site until the tree removal or construction work is completed. Click here to view sample posting.

All trees that are on a tree removal application must be marked with orange ribbon within 24 hours of submitting application. The ribbon can be supplied by the City at the time an application is submitted. The intent of this is to ensure that the correct trees are inspected by the City Arborist for removal and to notify the public of the owners’ intention to remove the tree(s). Failure to mark the tree(s) prior to initial inspection will result in a failed inspection and a $100 re-inspection fee. Please remember that the tree(s) need to be marked within 24 hours of application to avoid re-inspection fees. Click here to view sample markings

LICENSE AND INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS: Contractors, subcontractors, tree service contractors, their agents and employees who perform pruning, planting, trimming or removing trees within the City of Sarasota shall be required to hold valid occupational licenses and valid proof of worker’s compensation insurance, public liability insurance and property damage insurance in accordance with any applicable requirements of Florida law.

NOTE: Be aware that requests for full payment before work begins should trigger a warning bell. You may never see the contractor again. You should pay in advance only when it is a large job, you have already properly screened the contractor, and you have a proper contract. Upon signing the contract you might need to pay a small percentage of the total amount with the balance due upon completion of the job.