Tree Permits

Answer these three (3) simple steps to apply for a tree removal permit:

  1. Is a tree removal permit required?
  2. Is my contractor pre-approved by the City? 
  3. Do I need to provide additional information with my application?

1.  Is a Tree Removal Permit Required?

  • You do NOT need a permit to prune trees on residential property (commercial properties should contact the Planning Department for approval).
  • You do NOT need a permit to remove undergrowth UNLESS you are in an environmentally protected area.  (Contact the Planning Department if you are within 200 feet of a stream, a lake, or in wetlands).
  • You DO need a permit if the tree is over a certain size and type.  See the table below:
Type of Tree Permit is Required if
Tree Size Is:
Protected Specimen Tree
 if Tree Size Is"
Understory8" or greater DBH
(except Bradford Pear)
8" or greater DBH
(except Bradford Pear trees)
Canopy18" or greater DBH
(includes Bradford Pear)
Softwoods + Sweetgums: 24" or greater DBH
Hardwoods: 20" or greater DBH

DBH is the diameter of the tree at breast height (about 4.5 feet from the ground). Take the circumference and divide by 3.14 to get the diameter. 

An understory tree is any tree that at maturity is underneath the forest canopy. Examples of these include Dogwood, Redbud, Cherry, and ornamental maples. A canopy tree is the tallest trees that form the forest canopy. Examples of these include Pine, Cypress, Oak, Sweetgum, or Hickory. 

Softwood trees are those that stay green all year. Local examples include pine and magnolia. Hardwood trees are those that shed their leaves in the autumn. Local examples include maples, oaks, and hickory.  

Specimen Trees are Protected

Specimen trees may ONLY be removed if it meets one of the following conditions:

  1. The tree is dead, dying, or diseased 
  2. The tree is in a construction area of an approved building permit. 
  3. The tree poses an immediate life safety hazard
  4. Removal is required for utility work
  5. Owner contends the tree is an economic burden and will contribute $20 per caliper inch DBH to the City's Tree Fund (This fund is a dedicated fund and can only be used to plant trees on public property.)

2.  Is My Tree-Removal Contractor Pre-Approved?

Tree Contractors (PDF)

Companies removing trees within Peachtree City must be pre-approved. Inclusion on the pre-approved contractor list does not constitute an endorsement from the City. Homeowners are responsible for and encouraged to ask contractors for references, a copy of both their general liability and workers' compensation insurance policies, and other pertinent information prior to removing trees from your property. 

To add your company to the list, please email the city a copy of your current Occupational Tax Certificate, an insurance declaration page, and proof of worker's compensation coverage.

3.  Check for Other Approvals

There are some situations that will require additional items for your application:

  1. You're in a Home Owner's Association that requires approval for tree removals
  2. The tree is within 5 feet of a property line
  3. The death and/or disease of the tree is not evident to a layman
  4. Make sure you leave at least 2 trees on your property

HOA Approval Needed

The City requires approval letters from these neighborhoods:

ArdenleeLake Kedron Communities *Smokerise Plantation
BrookfieldThe Oaks at TiberlakeSmokerise Estates Ph 4 & 5
The CoventryPlanterra RidgeSt. Simons Cove
The EstatesThe PreserveStoneybrook Plantation
Kedron HillsSmokerise Crossing
* Albemarle, Cottage Grove, Sutton's Cove, Larkin's Landing, The Point on Lake Kedron


Tree is Close to Property Line

If the tree is within 5 feet of a property line, you must either submit a letter of approval from the adjoining property owner or you must submit a tree survey conducted by a surveyor licensed to practice in the State of Georgia.

The Tree Looks Healthy, But Isn't

If the tree does not look like it is dead, dying, or diseased to a lay-person, you may be required to submit a letter from a certified Arborist. 

Every Residential Lot Must Have at Least 2 Trees

If you would like to remove some trees from your property, please remember that every lot must have at least two (2) trees. If you remove all the trees from your property, even when done legally, you will be required by the City to replant at least two (2) trees that at minimum 4" DBH

Apply for a Tree Removal Permit

Submit a complete application.  You may apply through email or through the Permit Portal (top right menu bar)

Your submittal must include:

  1. Completed Tree Removal Permit Application 
  2. Photo of each tree to be removed 
    • Tree must be clearly marked for removal
    • You must show measurement of tree (picture below)Person Measures Trunk of Tree Circumference
  3. Letters of Approval, if applicable
    • If your property is in one of the listed Home Owner's Associations 
    • If the tree is within 5 feet of the property line, submit a letter of approval from that property owner or a survey showing the location of the tree. 
    • If the death or disease is not evident to the layperson, the City may require that you submit a letter from an Arborist stating the case for the removal of the tree. 



Penalties

Removal of trees without a required permit will result in a citation to both the property owner and the contractor. Fines will be determined by the Judge in the mandatory court appearance. 

Tree contractors who have been found guilty 3 or more times will not be issued a tree removal permit for 12 months following the third conviction.

Trees on City Property May NOT be Removed

There are steep fines for illegal clearing of any kind on public property. If you have concerns about a tree located in the Greenbelt, contact Public Works at (770) 487-5183.

Do Not Disturb Environmentally Protected Areas

These include tree-save buffers, watershed protection buffers, stream or wetland buffers or conservation easements. If you have questions about whether your property has one of the protection areas, please contact the Planning and Development Department to verify before you begin work. There are steep fines for illegal work in these protected areas.