Urban Forestry Program

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artboard_1.pngThe City of Harrisonburg recognizes the value of green infrastructure to our community. Through Harrisonburg's Urban Forestry Program, City staff work to increase tree canopy in Harrisonburg improving the air we breathe, reducing urban noise, filtering our water, helping control stormwater runoff, providing shade and habitat for a wide variety of living things, and enhaning the beauty our urban landscapes.

To manage and improve the City’s Urban Forests, the Public Works Department utilizes the skills of five certified arborists on staff, three of which are International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Tree Risk Assessment Qualified (TRAQ).


Since 2018, staff have been very busy adjusting to the effects the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) on ash trees in Harrisonburg. Harrisonburg removed a significant amount of ash in Harrisonburg and treated some ash through the Department of Forestry’s Cost Share Program.

Learn how Harrisonburg adjusted to the EAB and how staff have been proactive in preserving dwindling ash wood.

Button link to Out of the Ashes Page

What happens to the ash trees

Button link to Beyond the Ashes page

More about all of the trees in Harrisonburg


Harrisonburg’s Urban Forestry Management Plan

The City of Harrisonburg has a vision that its urban forest is safe, efficient to maintain, complements its development goals, delivers equitable benefits, and enhances the character and livability of the city. To accomplish goals to realize this vision, a comprehensive urban forest management plan is required. This plan was developed to assist Harrisonburg to better understanding its urban forest’s composition, structure, and tree maintenance needs as well as plan for both short-term and long-term resource allocation and develop risk management strategies. As of 2023, the City is half-way through the 10 year plan and has accomplished the planned planting of 50% diverse selection of trees to enhance Harrisonburg's tree canopy. 

Urban Forest Management Master Plan [4MB]PDF


Tree Care and Maintenance In Your Own Yard



City Resources

  • Looking to plant trees in your yard? Check out the City's HCAP (Harrisonburg Conservation Assistance Program)! HCAP is a cost share reimbursement program aimed at assisting eligible landowners with their stormwater concerns. HCAP will pay 100% of your estimated cost up to $3,500 to plant new or replant lost trees! More information may be found on our HCAP webpage.
  • Contact your Harrisonburg City Arborists for tree care recommendations by emailing Jeremy.Harold@harrisonburgva.gov 

Hiring an Arborist

Tree Planting and Care

  • A Year of Total Tree Care - Visual Aid Coming Soon!
  • US Department of Agriculture Forestry Service - Tree Owners Manual

What Not to Do


Urban Forestry & Urban Wood Program Resources

Urban Woods Group Logo

The City of Harrisonburg focuses on the care and management of trees and tree populations for the purpose of improving our urban environment. Efforts and city projects relating to urban forestry advocates the role of trees as a critical part of Harrisonburg's urban infrastructure. Participation with local related organizations and current efforts within the city include:


Feature Articles and Media Coverage

For more information on Harrisonburg Public Works' urban wood utilization efforts contact Jeremy.Harold@HarrisonburgVA.gov