Always look up before planting a tree. Tree and power line conflicts can often be avoided by following this simple advice.
When selecting trees to plant on your property, you should consider the mature height of the tree when determining a suitable planting location. Read the tag to determine how tall your selected tree will eventually grow. For areas near houses and overhead utilities, there are three tree height zones, as follows:
Low: The low height zone extends 40 feet on either side of overhead wires. Plant only large shrubs and small trees with mature heights of 20 feet or less within this area.
Medium: To accommodate the width of taller trees, the medium height zone begins at least 50 feet from all utility lines. Select trees that grow 40 feet or less for planting within this zone.
Tall: The tall height zone begins at least 65 feet from utility lines. Trees that grow taller than 40 feet are suitable for planting in this area.
Native species will often grow better with fewer insect and disease problems than nonnative trees.
Before you plant, call VA811 at least three days in advance (not counting weekends and holidays) to have your underground utilities marked. They can be reached by simply dialing 8-1-1.
Find more here on choosing the right tree for the right place.
Before you dig, call VA811 to have utility lines marked. The service is free, and it is the law.
Steps to planting a tree:
Dig a hole that is at least twice as wide, but no deeper than the size of the tree's root system.
Place the tree in the hole at a depth where the soil line is the same as it was in its container.
Back fill the hole, then firm the soil, while holding the tree in a straight, upright position. When the hole is almost filled, water thoroughly and then complete filling.
It will take about six months to one year for the tree to get fully established.
Avoid fertilizing at planting or during the first year when it's easy to burn roots on newly planted trees.
What’s buried underground?