Urban Forestry


Tree Maintenance Hotlines

For public safety hazards--trees or tree debris that have fallen in the streets or on sidewalks call:
Weekdays* 7am-5:30pm: 805/652-4550 or 805/667-6519 *closed alternate Fridays/schedule
After hours and weekends: 805/650-8010 (Ventura Police Department)

Citywide Indian Laurel Fig Tree Removal Program

Indian Laurel Fig Tree Management Plan Year 3

The City of Ventura’s Urban Forestry Program is beginning its third year of actively reducing the population of Indian Laurel fig trees from the City’s Urban Forest.  The challenges with these trees have been well documented and the City is committed to removing and replacing these problematic trees with a more appropriate tree species.

For additional information pertaining to this year’s tree removals please use the links below.

Maintenance Zone 8 - Trees being removed and trees being pruned


Maintenance Zone 21 - Trees being removed


Citywide Indian Laurel Fig Tree Removal Frequently Asked Questions

Tree Removal

Have questions regarding whether or not the public tree in front of your home is a candidate for removal?  If so please review our Frequently Asked Questions document for answers to most of the common tree removal questions our office receives. 

Tree Removal Frequently Asked Questions (pdf)

Trees and Drought

Trees and water are two of our most precious natural resources. When we water wisely and maintain our trees carefully, we enjoy a wide range of benefits at a low cost and with little effort. Click on the icons or links for web, pdf and YouTube resources from the California Urban Forests Council on ways you can help both young and old trees survive our ongoing water deficit:




Mature Tree Watering          Young Tree Watering


Help trees survive the drought   Save our water & our trees


Mulching is easily one of the simplest and most efficient ways to help conserve water during a drought.  The benefits of mulching are actually significant enough to warrant use in the landscape all of the time.  Mulching both plants and trees is considered an industry best management practice.

Mulch comes in many different types, but our favorites are compost, leaves, and wood chips.  Mulch should be applied to areas where turf is not present or has been removed.  Mulch should be applied at a depth of 3-4" to the area desired.  For trees the larger the area that you can mulch under the dripline (the width of the trees canopy) the better. 

Mulch helps to insulate the soil reducing the amount of water that is lost to the atmosphere through a process known as transpiration.  This insulating effect also helps to maximum the water you are using in the landscape and its availability to plants.  Over time mulch breaks down into organic matter which slowly works its way into the soil.  This process greatly improves soil quality, including soil porosity which further helps to increase the efficiency of your watering.  Mulching also helps to supress weed growth that keeps the landscape looking more finished and prevents weeds from competing with our trees and plants for water.



Tree Pruning Management Plan

The City of Ventura Urban Forestry Program is responsible for the pruning and maintenance of the City’s 30,000 public trees through a management plan that calls for pruning most or all of the trees within the city’s 24 pruning zones over a six-year period. Based upon staffing, funding and specific tree needs, yearly and long-term work plans are being developed with the goals of ●pruning most or all of the trees within a given geographic region or zone and ●targeting a specific number of zones for pruning each year ● for a targeted zone-pruning cycle of 6 years.  

While it is our goal to prune all public trees, especially residential trees, within that 6 year cycle, there may be years where extenuating circumstances require recalculated decisions that could alter the length of time between pruning cycles. Our current 6-year projection of Zone Pruning can be viewed using this interactive and searchable map.

California Oak Moth

The California Oak Moth (Phryganidia californica) is back in town and can be observed fluttering in the evening around many of the City's public oak trees.  The moth is common to our area and is a cosmetic pest, meaning the damage caused is not detrimental to the tree. Urban Forestry staff is currently monitoring our active moth population but not spraying, since our goal for many years has been to reduce pesticide use to control these natural pests and to find a healthy balance between minimizing debris associated with the oak moth while preserving the health of our public street trees. Read more from UC Davis Integrated Management  Website.

Asian Citrus Psyllid (ACP)

Learn how you can protect your citrus trees from a plant disease called Huanglongbing (HLB) and the Asian citrus psyllid, a pest that can spread the disease.

In March 2012, Huanglongbing (HLB) – a plant disease considered a death sentence for California citrus – was discovered in Los Angeles, putting homeowners on high alert. While not harmful to humans or pets, once a citrus tree is infected with HLB, there is no cure and it will die. The disease can be spread by a pest called the Asian citrus psyllid, and the pest has been found in and near the city of Ventura. The best way to protect citrus trees from the disease is to control the psyllid population. Help protect your backyard citrus trees:

  • Inspect citrus trees for signs of the pest and disease each month or whenever watering, spraying, pruning or tending trees.
  • Call the California Department of Food & Agriculture hotline at 1-800-491-1899 if any suspicious pests or symptoms of HLB are found.
  • Do not bring any plant material into California from other states or countries and do not move citrus plants out of quarantined areas, because they might be carrying psyllids or be infected with HLB.
  • Only buy citrus trees from reputable, licensed California nurseries.
  • Dry or double bag plant clippings before placing in green waste recycle bins to avoid moving psyllids and HLB-infected plant material.
  • Cooperate with agriculture officials on detection and suppression efforts of the Asian citrus psyllid and HLB.

For more information and to find out what to look for, visit www.CaliforniaCitrusThreat.org or view the
SAVE YOUR CITRUS! brochure, with helpful info about the Citrus pest & Disease Prevention Program

Read the 4/2/2013 VC Star article: "Mounting costs could alter stratgey for fighting disease-carrying citrus insect"

Read the 2/24/13 VC Star article:  "Ventura County agricultural commissioner to issue psyllid treatment warning"

City of Ventura Urban Forestry Program

How do trees benefit us?
Trees improve our quality of life in several important ways, producing oxygen we and our vehicles consume, cooling our streets, lowering temperatures in the shade about 10 degrees, cleaning our air and, as street trees, providing sound dampening and wind buffers. Aesthetically, street trees unify a streetscape and provide visual interest to pedestrians and motorists. Trees also provide habitat for a variety of animals.

Tree Maintenance Policies
An urban forest is the public property of all residents, and is managed as a public resource. The Parks Division regulates all planting, pruning and removal of trees in the public easement. This includes parkways (the space between the sidewalk and the curb) where most trees are located. In some neighborhoods, the sidewalk is adjacent to the curb, and the easement is situated in the area between the house and the sidewalk. Residents must obtain a permit to plant, prune or remove a tree located in a parkway or easement. There is no charge for this permit.

Tree Replacement
The right tree in the right place. Some tree species such as Ficus and Olive create problems that are unacceptable to many residents. These species are being evaluated for replacement on a street-by-street basis. As these trees are removed, new species will be planted that are more compatible with the streetscape. Trees will be located to avoid underground and overhead utility lines. Each street will continue to have an approved tree species, and trees will be varied across the City to help reduce the severity of disease outbreaks.

Street Trees - Ventura's Urban Forest
Ventura's Parks Division is responsible for approximately 30,000 City trees. These, along with trees on private property and trees in the city's barrancas make up the rich and varied mosaic that is Ventura's urban forest. Ventura's urban forest is divided into 24 tree maintenance zones. Trees are pruned year round on a zone-by-zone basis. When tree emergencies occur, tree crew personnel respond as quickly as possible. The Parks Division operates a Tree Hotline at 805-667-6519.

Safely caring for our city trees
Members of Ventura's Urban Forestry crew recently completed the Electrical Hazard Awareness Program (EHAP). Electricity is a significant safety concern for today’s working arborists. Nearly 30% of all tree related fatalities occur as a result of either direct or indirect contact with electricity. To the working arborist electrical hazards can exist in transmission lines, street light wires, even cable TV and phone lines. Indirect contact between a live branch and an energized conductor can also be fatal.  EHAP certification is an intensive employer certified training program that combines a serious of videos, course work, and testing. An aerial rescue is also performed and is a requisite for program completion. The EHAP certification satisfies both OSHA and ANSI requirements, and will give our working arborists vital knowledge to allow them to work safely while working in a highly skilled and dangerous profession.


City Trees (pdf)
Arroyo Verde Park Brochure
Recommended Species List
USDA Forest Service's Tree Owner's Manual