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The Green Canopy

Preserving, protecting, and planting trees in the Atlanta metropolitan region became imperative in 1986 when the newly formed organization Trees Atlanta expanded its reach to surrounding counties. During the early 1990s, both DeKalb County and the City of Atlanta put in place ordinances for tree protection. Today, both governments maintain strict regulations concerning the removal of trees and the planting of replacements. 

Both DeKalb County and the City of Atlanta distinguish between specimen trees and all other trees. Specimen trees fall into two categories: overstory and understory. The former is a hardwood (oak, elm, poplar) or softwood (pine) with a 30” diameter at 4-1/2 feet above the ground. The latter is a smaller tree (dogwood, redbud) with a 10” diameter at 4-1/2 feet above ground.

Druid Hills residents often have questions about trees. We encourage everyone to visit the website of the Arborist Division of the City of Atlanta at or DeKalb County at

Below are other helpful links:

Planting list

Atlanta tree ordinance

DeKalb tree ordinance

Tree page from DH design manual

Dangerous trees on private property should be reported to DeKalb County Code Compliance at 404/371-3700; email is

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