November 19, 2013

SFV boulevard trees may be at risk

As winter approaches, the vendor hired by our Victor Gardens Community Association has expressed concern about low hanging limbs on many boulevard trees in front of our Single Family Village homes.  Snow removal equipment requires at least a 7 foot vertical clearance from the sidewalk.  Many SFV boulevard trees currently don't meet that clearance.  If the equipment doesn't have sufficient room to operate, your tree(s) are at risk of damage.  These low-clearance trees also pose a risk to the snow removal equipment and personnel.
Your boulevard tree(s) are your responsibility, not the association's or the city's.  If your tree is damaged or becomes diseased as a result of branch damage, you, as a homeowner are responsible to replace the tree:

According to Victor Garden's SFV Covenants 10.2.2:
The Owners or Occupants shall mow and otherwise maintain the boulevards adjacent to their Units, including but not limited to maintaining, trimming and replacing trees located in the boulevard adjacent to their respective Units. Any tree located in a Unit or in the boulevard adjacent to a Unit that dies or becomes diseased shall be replaced by the Owner of the Unit with a tree of the same species and of a reasonable size.

This concern is shared by the City of Hugo, and we've posted about this on our Victor Gardens News website and notified residents via email few times.  In fact, last year the City requested a higher clearance (12-15'), but was OK with residents limbing their trees up in a phased, yearly approach.  It's a subject discussed at length here:(see the previous posts)
For the coming winter season, please ensure that there's at least 7' clearance down to the sidewalk on your boulevard trees.  This type of pruning is easy do-it-yourself work requiring little knowledge or tools.  Of course, hiring a professional landscape maintenance company or certified arborist would be another good option.

Victor Gardens is a beautiful neighborhood with healthy boulevard trees.  Let's keep it that way. Now is a good time to prune your trees are heading into their winter dormancy.