Street Tree Lists and Development Planting


The City Arborist designed a master street tree list for the City of Bowling Green based on recommendations from Public Works Department staff, Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Forestry, Ohio State University (OSU) Wood County Extension, local nurseries, and other communities in Northwest Ohio. Our street tree list includes trees that are compatible with our city parks. We must have a minimum tree lawn width of four feet to plant a small tree (Height: 20 to 25 feet), six feet for a medium tree (Height: 30 to 40 feet), and eight feet for a large tree (Height: 40 feet and over).

The tree lawn is defined as the city right-of-way green space between the curb and sidewalk. Tree selection is based on soil type and drainage, visibility for traffic, infrastructure in tree lawn, absence of messy or noxious fruits, insect and disease resistance, hardiness for the region, and height at maturity.

Disturbed Soils

Street Trees for new subdivisions are tree species that tolerate disturbed soils. Disturbed soils are poorly drained due to compaction by construction equipment. Topsoil is removed during the construction and a thin layer is added to the compacted subsoil.

Wood County and Bowling Green area contain Hoytville Clay soils that are high pH and alkaline. This limits the tree species that grow in the soil due to the pH factor. Acid loving tree species will struggle and be under stress in high pH soils. For example, red maple varieties (Red Sunset and October Glory) will have chlorotic (Yellowing of leaves) look due to manganese and zinc deficiency from high pH soils.

Large growing trees (Height: 30 feet and over) cause power outages with limbs touching wires and during extreme weather events. Large trees must be pruned every 3 to 5 years by ANSI 300 Standard for Utility Pruning of Trees for line clearance. City Ordinance for trees state we must plant small growing trees (Height: 20 to 25 feet) that will not interfere with the wires.

Landscape Guide

The Bowling Green Tree Commission and City Arborist will be creating a new Landscape Guide for Developers and Home Owners. The goal is to educate Developers and Home Owners on where landscaping materials can be installed in city-owned green spaces, cul-de-sacs, boulevard islands, and business locations that meet city ordinances.  Our plan is to coordinate with all city departments, developers, and residents on input into the guide.