The City of Lakeland boasts over 56,000 publicly managed street and park trees and over 300 distinct tree species. Predominant tree species include slash pine (Pinus elliottii), common crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica), live oak (Quercus virginiana), cabbage palmetto (Sabal palmetto), bald cypress (Taxodium distichum), and laurel oak (Quercus laurifolia). The public trees in Lakeland provide about 590 acres of the canopy, provide shade, reduce energy use, improve air quality, reduce carbon dioxide levels, mitigate stormwater runoff, and increase property values. All of these effects are part of our effort to increase the quality of life for every citizen in Lakeland.
In a cost-benefit analysis conducted by the U.S. Forest Service in 2011, the public trees in Lakeland were found to provide the city with a net annual benefit of $2,038,450. In other words, the city receives $3.17 in benefits for every $1 spent on our municipal forestry program. The Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Arts Department is responsible for the care and upkeep of our urban forest in order to sustain the economic and ecological benefits of our public trees. Some duties include:
The City of Lakeland has been awarded a Level I Accreditation by The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program and The Morton Arboretum for achieving particular standards of professional practices deemed important for arboreta and botanic gardens. The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program is the only global initiative to officially recognize arboreta at various levels of development, capacity, and professionalism. The City of Lakeland Arboretum is also now recognized as an accredited arboretum in the Morton Register of Arboreta, a database of the world’s arboreta and gardens dedicated to woody plants.
These beautiful tree collections were created and have been maintained for several decades by the City of Lakeland Parks Department. The vast variety of trees stand as a testament to the City’s unique interest in horticulture, arboriculture and botany over the years.
Follow the links below to take a GPS enabled tour of our cataloged tree collections.
- Coming Soon
For information or to report downed limbs or a tree on public property
Please note: Private trees are not the purview of the City of Lakeland Parks and Recreation Department.
Lakeland Police Department non-emergency at 863.834.6900
Tree Removal Permit Application - To remove a tree from a residential or commercial property if it is dead, diseased, damaged, or due to construction, etc
City of Lakeland Landscape Ordinances - Found in the Land Development Code
The link above will take you to the City of Lakeland Land Development Code. We are providing directions below on how to find the Landscape Ordinance in the Land Development Code.
Florida Chapter of the International Society of Arborculture (ISA) - Resources for finding and hiring local certified arborists and overall tree care
Florida Urban Forestry Council - Details and seminars about Florida state policies, tree care, and more
National Arbor Day Foundation -Information on choosing and identifying trees, planting and care, the mission of the Arbor Day Foundation, and more
The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) - An A-Z index to locate all of their research departments, information on plant diseases, care, identification, and governmental programs