Notable trees

Kowhai tree in bloom.

Notable trees are trees on public or private land that have been assessed as having a high historical, botanical, environmental or landscape value. These trees need special care to ensure that future generations can enjoy them.

Trees of significance may be protected under our District Plan. There are rules and incentives to ensure these trees are maintained to a healthy standard so they're safe, stable, and continue to contribute to the city's tree canopy. You can find the rules and the full list of notable trees in Palmerston North in section 17 of the District Plan.

Check to see if your property has a protected tree on it

Work on notable trees must be carried out by experienced contractors.

Council isn't responsible for undertaking work on notable trees on private land. However we can provide financial support.

Love your tree? So do we

Nominate a notable tree

Do you know of a tree, group of trees, or bush remnant that you'd like us to consider for notable tree status? Notable trees are reviewed every 10 years as part of the District Plan review process, however we welcome suggestions for new notable trees at any time.

The next review is planned for 2024.

Can't wait for the next review to get them protected? Talk to your lawyer about getting a covenant to protect your tree. You may be able to get financial support from the QEII National Trust or Department of Conservation for covenanting bush areas.

Suggest a notable tree

Carrying out work on notable trees

Minor maintenance to improve/maintain tree health

Removing dead or diseased vegetation, or minor trimming (trimming that can be done with secateurs) of any scheduled notable tree or group of notable trees in order to maintain their state of health is allowed. No resource consent is required. You may wish to consult with the Council if you are unsure whether the work you propose falls under this category.

Trimming or maintenance which falls outside this but is still non-invasive is considered a Controlled Activity and will require resource consent. Controlled Activity resource consents to carry out notable tree work are free. This work may also be eligible for funding support to help cover the cost of the arborist.

To apply for consent and be considered for funding, please apply online using the link below, which opens the Notable Palmy Trees page on our SmartyGrants community funding portal.

Major work on or near a tree

Work that is more than minor maintenance – like removing part of the tree or excavating under its canopy – may have serious consequences for the health and safety of the tree and surrounds if not managed well. This type of work requires a full assessment by Council. You need to apply for consent using the form below.

Resource consent application form(PDF, 213KB)

Council support for notable trees

Did you know that most of Palmy’s notable trees are deciduous? Because of that, we give out free green waste vouchers for notable tree owners to help them get rid of leaf-litter or buy quality compost to enrich their tree. If you have a notable tree on your property, we will send you a voucher.

Council recognises that notable trees are of value to the wider community, but the ownership and responsibility to maintain the tree is on the property owner.

The quality of regular maintenance work can have a significant impact on a tree’s ability to grow healthily. Council recognises this can come at a cost. Our Notable Tree Incentive Strategy enables notable tree owners to apply for reimbursement of 70 per cent of the arborist's work, up to a total of $400 for an individual tree, and $1,500 for a group of trees.

This funding is available for minor maintenance work only, and applicants must use preferred contractors and stick to the guidelines outlined here:

Heritage Funding Guidelines(PDF, 2MB)

There are no lodgement or processing fees for getting a resource consent for minor maintenance of notable trees, but the work must be done in line with the maintenance schedule in the STEM tree assessment report.

Preferred contractors

The following arborists have been approved by Palmerston North City Council to carry out maintenance work on notable trees.

All-Tree Services

PO Box 5456, Palmerston North 4414 

Contact: Simon Sidey 

Phone: 06 357 8199



DL Tree Specialists Ltd 

105 Pohangina Road, Ashhurst  

Contact: Dat Lieu  

Phone: 021 044 7365 


Guardian Tree Services 

291 Napier Road, Palmerston North 

Contact: Jonas Muller 

Phone: 027 217 0799 or 06 3546 990 or 0800 141 710 


Robinson Tree Services 

Contact: Fraser Robinson 

Phone: 06 323 4959 


Vertical Arborists

 PO Box 5264, Terrace End, Palmerston North 4414 

Contact: Jack Taylor 

Phone: 0800 967 528 





Want to be a preferred contractor?

We maintain a list of arborists who have shown they can work safely on notable trees, and whose work has led to exceptional health outcomes for trees. If you're an arborist who'd like to be considered as a preferred contractor, please fill out the application form below.

Preferred contractors application form(PDF, 313KB)