Tree Preservation Inspections

Image of fence protecting a tree on a residential property
Learn more about protecting trees during construction before and after work begins. If you're building a home or renovating a home, you might need a tree preservation inspection. 
On this page

Main Points

  • Before any ground-disturbing activity starts, get a Tree Preservation Inspection done. 
  • Whether you choose the Prescriptive Path or Performance Path to protect your trees during construction, a Root Protection Zone must be set up.

Request a Tree Preservation Inspection

  1. Call the Request for Inspection and Inspection Results phone number (right side of this page under Contacts) to set up an inspection.
  2. Use the IRV code 507
  3. An Urban Forestry Tree Inspector will come out to the site.
    • They'll make sure root protection fencing is properly installed as marked on the site plans that are on-site.
    • Inspections can be scheduled for either day or evening.

Note: Request Field Issuance Remodel (FIR) permits by calling the Urban Forestry phone number at (503) 823 - 8733.

Post-Construction Tree Maintenance and Protection

  1. Remove the root protection zone barriers.
  2. Inspect the trees after you complete construction.
  3. Mulch, prune, irrigate, and fertilize as necessary.
    • Mulch should not touch trunk. 
  4. Keep a regular inspection schedule for three to five years after construction.
    • This helps you to determine ongoing maintenance needs and possible changes in condition.

Protecting a Tree Throughout Its Lifetime

  • Weed and mulch around trees to establish a grass-free area. Mulch should not touch the trunk. 
  • Keep mowers and weed trimmers away from tree trunks to avoid damage to the bark.
  • Protect tree limbs and trunks from damage during home maintenance and repair projects. 
  • Avoid contaminating the soil with gasoline, paint, oil or paint thinner.
  • Avoid soil compaction: do not drive, park, or pave over the root protection zone. Remember to expand the root protection zone as the tree grows.

Read the Tree Code, Title 11

Additional Resources

Oregon State University Extension’s manual about tree protection

A helpful guidebook Oregon State University put together on protecting trees during construction.