Planting Guidelines

Trees make the places we live feel like home. Great neighborhoods are made up of more than nice houses, good schools and friendly people. Simply having trees on your street can improve your community.

Call 811 Before You Dig

Call 811 before every digging job - even small projects like planting trees and shrubs - to learn where underground lines, pipes and cables are buried in your yard. Know what's below.

Select the Right Tree or Shrub

Watch our Right Tree Right Place Video for guidance on what to plant and where to plant it.

  • Be sure to look up and down. Trees grow to varying heights and spread at their maturity.
  • Consider the tree or shrub's location relative to nearby power lines and electrical equipment.
  • Analyze the condition of your lot, including soil conditions and drainage.
  • Determine your planting goal: shade, flowers or leaves, fruit or visual screening.

Smart Landscaping & Energy Efficiency

Smart landscaping can go a long way toward increasing the comfort of your home. Natural shading helps cool your home during the summer and can significantly lower your air conditioning costs. Trees can also be used as a windbreak to lower winter heating costs.

Tree Size Requirements

Trees and shrubs should be planted so they will not grow within a 10-foot radius of NES poles and equipment. Here are the minimum planting clearances based on size.

Important Tree Planting Guidelines

Shrubs 10 feet
Small Maturing Trees 15 feet
Medium Maturing Trees 35 feet
Large Maturing Trees 45 feet

Power Line-Approved Trees

NES and the Metro Tree Advisory Committee have identified a variety of power line-approved trees that can be planted near power lines without requiring major trimming in the future. They reach an average height of 20 feet at maturity. Be sure to contact NES at 615-695-7400 before planting near lines that are inaccessible from a driveway. Note: Tree replacements must be chosen from a list of NES-approved replacement species.