Tree Programs

Image of kids at Arbor Day EventTree City USA

The Tree City USA program has been greening up cities and towns across America since 1976. It is a nationwide movement that provides the framework necessary for communities to manage and expand their public trees.

More than 3,400 communities have made the commitment to becoming a Tree City USA. They have achieved Tree City USA status by meeting four core standards of sound urban forestry management: maintaining a tree board or department, having a community tree ordinance, spending at least $2 per capita on urban forestry and celebrating Arbor Day.

On April 26, 2019 the City of Monroe was awarded Tree City USA by Kirsten Lints, representing the Washington Community Forestry Council and the State Department of Natural Resources.

Tree City USA Growth Award

As a third year Three City USA, the City of Monroe is being awarded a Growth Award. The Tree City USA Growth Award is presented by the Arbor Day Foundation to participating Tree City USA communities that demonstrate higher levels of tree care and community engagement during the calendar year. The Growth Award recognizes major milestones and annual activities in five categories that combine to build sustainable community forestry programs over the long term. The City of Monroe is receiving the Growth Award for creating and implementing a community Heritage Tree Program and Living Christmas Tree Donation Program.

Heritage Tree & Living Christmas Tree Programs

In April of 2018 two new City of Monroe programs were announced: The Heritage Tree program and the Living Christmas Tree Program. These programs led the way for Monroe becoming a Tree City USA like its neighbors Duvall and Woodinville.

Heritage Tree ProgramCamperdown Elm Heritage Tree

To kick off the Heritage Tree program, the Park Board and City of Monroe selected the first tree for recognition: the large Coast Redwood tree which is located at Highway 2 and East Main in Traveler’s Park. It received Heritage status for its size and rarity in the area. Adorned with lights, it serves as the community Christmas Tree for Monroe’s annual tree lighting. For 2019, nine additional heritage trees were nominated by Monroe residents and added to the tree registry (PDF).

The Heritage Tree Program encourages residents of all ages to seek out significant trees within the City limits and nominate them for recognition. We invite you to look around the city, neighborhoods and parks to find unusual, large or historic trees for nomination. A group of trees in a grove are also eligible. If a tree is located on private property, the homeowner must be notified of the nomination. The acknowledgement is solely for recognition and does not attach additional preservation or retention requirements to the tree or property. “Our goal is not only to celebrate the diversity and importance of trees in our community, but to give the homeowners recognition for preserving and caring for them. We are excited to see the variety of trees nominated,” says Park Board member Tami Kinney.

Nomination forms for the Heritage Tree contest are available online, at Monroe City Hall and the Monroe Parks Department. Nominations will be accepted each year until Dec. 31 with heritage trees announced in April. This year’s Heritage Trees and a map of their location can be viewed in the heritage tree brochure.

Living Christmas Tree Program

If you purchase a living Christmas tree in a container, and you don’t intend to plant it on your own property, you may donate it to our local Monroe city parks so that everyone can enjoy it for years to come. Call the Parks & Recreation office at (360) 863-4519 for information on how to donate your potted living Christmas tree.

“Our living Christmas tree program allows residents who use living Christmas trees to donate suitable trees to the City for planting in our parks and open spaces after the holidays,” Mayor Geoffrey Thomas said.

You may find suitable living Christmas trees for sale at the following local area businesses:

Falling Water Gardens - 17516 WA-203, Monroe
Fred Meyer - 18805 St Route 2, Monroe
Pine Creek Farms and Nursery - 23225 Sofie Rd., Monroe
West Coast Nursery - 18720 WA-203, Monroe
Woods Creek Nursery - 21008 Woods Creek Rd., Monroe

For more information about the Heritage Tree and Living Christmas Tree programs, contact the Monroe Parks Department at 360-863-4559. You may nominate a tree by submitting a Heritage Tree Nomination Form (PDF).