Shade Tree Commission

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Apply for a Tree Permit

Find a Licensed Tree Expert or Tree Care Operator

Request a tree from the Street Tree Planting Program

Tree Planting Guidelines

Tree Planting Guidelines

Approved Tree Species List

The following guidelines shall apply for planting street trees in Hoboken:

  • All tree pits will be excavated to the full extent of their openings and to a depth of 3 feet.  All tree pits will be completely free of historic fill, construction debris, concrete washout, and existing soil.  
  • All tree pits will be backfilled with a high quality, neutral pH, sandy loam soil.  
  • The tree root flare will be exposed prior to planting and should be used to determine the proper depth at which the root ball will be set.  The tree root flare will be set at the soil finish grade.  
  • Girdling roots should be removed before backfilling.  
  • The trees will be stabilized with two wooden stakes and Arborties.  Guy wires with rubber hose are not acceptable.  
  • Each tree pit should have a HSTC approved, 3-sided tree pit guard installed along with hardwood mulch no deeper than 3" thick and 3" away from the tree trunk.  
  • A "Gator Bag" type of bag irrigation should be used if a permanent irrigation system is not installed.  The recommended rate for watering a new tree is 10 gallons of water per caliper inch of tree trunk, per week.  Trees should be watered throughout the entire year, except for when the ground is frozen, for at least the first two growing seasons.  

Tree Care

Watering New Trees with Gator Bags:

  • Fill 20-gallon gator bags once per week between May and October
  • If it rains 1-inch or more in a week's time period, you do not need to fill the gator bags
  • If the soil is compacted, use a hand cultivator to loosen the top 2-3 inches, allowing water to get to the roots

Watering New Trees without Gator Bags:

  • Water each tree with 20 gallons or four 5-gallon buckets once per week between May and October
  • Water slowly so the water can soak into the soil and does not run off of the sidewalk
  • If it rains 1-inch or more in a week's time period, you do not need to water
  • If the soil is compacted, use a hand cultivator to loosen the top 2-3 inches, allowing water to get to the roots

Mulching (if the tree is not already mulched):

  • Apply a three-inch layer of mulch, preferably shredded bark, to keep the water from evaporating quickly and reduce soil compaction
  • Do not pile the mulch against the trunk of the tree, so water does not accumulate and rot the tree trunk

Please remember!

  • Keep dogs and dog waste (including urine) out of the tree pit, or the waste will overwhelm the tree, burning its trunk, and harming soil nutrients
  • Remove weeds and unwanted plants from tree pits
  • Don't lock bikes to trees
  • Don't wrap trees with wires, tape, or lights
  • Keep tree pits clear of garbage and litter


The mission of the Shade Tree Commission is to help develop, promote, sustain and regulate an effective and safe shade tree program that benefits Hoboken’s trees and consequently benefits the environmental, economic and social well being of City residents.

The Commission will help sustain healthy trees on City and County streets by pursuing the removal and replacement of all damaged, dead, hazardous or diseased trees, and the pruning of existing trees to foster their health and longevity.

In addition, the Commission will communicate to residents and businesses in the City the need to protect and maintain each and every tree. This will be accomplished through education programs and specific projects in Hoboken.

Finally, the Commission will promote the addition of as many new trees as possible consistent with the need to insure that they are installed properly and maintained to extend their life.


The Shade Tree Commission vision will be accomplished through its efforts in partnership with the Department of Environmental Services, Mayor, City Council, business partners and community volunteers.

The City of Hoboken will have 4,000 healthy, well maintained trees on City and County streets by 2020.


Can you Dig It?

Hundreds of trees have been planted through the HSTC annual tree planting program. Request a tree from the Street Tree Planting Program.

Who's that Tree?

The HSTC has developed a complete inventory of all trees in the City.

In the Pits

Join us to weed and mulch all 170 tree pits and paint tree guards along Washington Street. Find volunteer opportunities here.

Celebrate Arbor Day!

HSTC annually plants trees near schools or in public parks to celebrate Arbor Day.

Why plant trees?

Check out 13 Reasons to plant trees, the benefits of trees in an urban environment and NJ DEP – Community Forestry.

2023 Meeting Dates

Shade Tree Commission Members

Term Start
Term End
Term Duration
Deborah Carlin
Alternate 2
Jan. 3, 2024
December 31, 2025
Two Years
Jack Hamlin
October 1, 2022
September 30, 2027
Five Years
Jane Zeff
Alternate 1
Aug. 23, 2023
December 31, 2025
Two years
Clarke Snell
July 14, 2023
December 31, 2028
Five Years
Ken Missbrenner
Jan. 1, 2022
December 31, 2026
Five Years
Jane Porges
Sept. 22, 2020
December 31, 2024
Five Years
E. Marcus Perry
Sept. 22, 2020
December 31, 2024
Five Year

Board Meetings

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