Landscaping & Urban Forestry

An urban forest is a collection of trees that grow within our city to improve the urban environment and the quality of life of people who live, work and spend their leisure time in urban landscapes. There are countless benefits of urban forests such as: filtering air, water, sunlight; providing shelter to animals; recreational areas for people; slowing wind and stormwater; shading homes and businesses to conserve energy providing up to a 10 degree cooler climate while lowering air-conditioning costs, and potentially reducing the number of unhealthful ozone days that plague us in the peak summer months.

Information, Links, and Forms

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I obtain information of the City’s Code of Ordinances?
You may obtain the City of Coconut Creek’s entire Code of Ordinances online at See Chapter 13, Sections 442-450 specifically, for most landscape requirements.

How many trees am I supposed to have on my property?
The minimum number of trees required on your property is based on the square footage of the lot and how the property is zoned. The majority of homes in the City require one (1) tree for every two thousand (2,000) square feet (or any portion thereof) of property. For example, a 6,000 sq. ft. lot would require a minimum of 3 trees. NOTE: Corner lots require an additional tree be planted in the side yard.

Lot Size (sq/ft)Minimum Required Number of...
4,001 - 6,000318
6,001 - 8,000424
8,001 - 10,000530
10,001 - 12,000636

Trees planted beyond your property lines cannot be counted toward your minimum lot requirements. Trees should not be planted in the lake maintenance easement.

Do the trees that are referred to as “street trees” count toward my lot tree count?
The “street trees” are the community trees that run the length of your street, which create a consistent theme. Street trees are not considered lot trees.

Do I need a permit to remove or replace trees?
There are several instances where a permit is required so it is always best to check with the Landscape Inspector before removing a tree. A permit is not required to remove a lot tree if it has a trunk diameter of less than 18 inches (measured at a height of 4 ½ feet). Tree replacement may be required to maintain the minimum tree requirement (see above). A permit is required to remove a street tree, a historical tree or a previously preserved tree.

If I need to remove a tree, what should I replace it with?

First, you should always seek approval from your HOA or property management team before removing or replacing landscaping. The replacement tree(s) must meet a size requirement and a quality, or grade, requirement. A percentage of the landscape material to be installed is required to be native plant material. Contact staff with any questions and/or concerns.

Minimum Replacement Sizes

Category 1
Shade/Canopy Trees
12' height, 5' spread, 2" minimum caliper.
FL #1 or Better: Makes up a minimum 40% of total trees required.
Category 2
Intermediate Trees
10' height, 4' spread, 2" minimum caliper.
FL #1 or Better: Makes up a minimum 30% of total trees required.
Category 3
Small Trees
8' height, 4' spread, 1 1/2" caliper.
FL #1 or Better: Makes up no more than 10% of total trees required.

Do palms count as trees on my lot?
Palms generally do not provide significant canopy. In most cases they must be used in groupings of 3 to meet the requirements of one 1 replacement tree. Palms are required a minimum clear trunk height starting at 8ft (the palm trunk needs to be a minimum of 8ft tall before the emergence of palm fronds) and planted with staggered heights.

Can I meet the minimum requirements by only installing palms?
If palms are used, they shall make up no more than 50% of the total trees required.

Who is responsible for maintaining the street tree in my neighborhood?
Most street trees are the responsibility of the property owner, even when the trees are planted in the right-of-way. However, some HOAs assume responsibility for maintenance of street trees. It is always best to check with your HOA or property management team prior to performing any tree care procedures. The City does not maintain street trees.

What if I didn’t have the proper number of trees on my property when I purchased my home?
While it’s true that many trees have been removed, and not replaced over the years, all homes (with the exception of the very oldest parts of the City) were required to have these minimum landscape requirements before the Certificate of Occupancy could be issued for that home. Previous residents of the home may have taken some trees out. Trees may have died over the years and were not replaced. Regardless of the reasons why or when, in order to get your home back into compliance with the City’s Code, we need to work together to get these valuable trees replaced.

Do I need a minimum amount of shrubs?
As with trees, the minimum number of shrubs that are required for your lot is based on the square footage of your property. In addition to these, you must also screen all equipment such as A/C pads, irrigation equipment, pool equipment, FPL boxes, etc. with shrubs.

Is there a height requirement for hedges?
Yes, hedges in the front yard setback should be maintained at a height of 30in or less. Hedges in the side or rear setback should be maintained at a height of 8ft or less.

Who do I contact if I have any more questions?
Contact our Landscape Inspector, at 954-956-1530
or Sharon Vollmer, Urban Forester, at 954-956-1517.

Butterfly Capital of the World

© 2024 City of Coconut Creek. All rights reserved. Butterfly and Coconut Creek emblem are registered trademark of the City of Coconut Creek. Under Florida law, e-mail addresses are public records. If you do not want your e-mail address released in response to a public records request, do not send electronic mail to this entity. Instead, contact this office by phone or in writing.