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Chapter 7—Choosing Suitable Trees for Urban and Suburban Sites: Site Evaluation and Species Selection.1

Edward F. Gilman and Laura P. Sadowski 2


Site evaluation is the first step in selecting proper trees for a planting site. It is important to consider both above-ground and below-ground site attributes. This fact sheet discusses in detail above-ground attributes (such as light, slope, wind, salt, existing trees, overhead wires, street and security lights, buildings, signs, vandalism, and regulations) and below-ground attributes (such as soil pH, drainage, depth, salinity, distance to the water table, and obstacles to root growth). Irrigation, pruning, fertilization, pest control and desired tree attributes (such as function, size, form, and longevity) are also described in detail.

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1. This document is ENH1057, one of the Urban Forest Hurricane Recovery Program series of the School of Forest Resources and Conservation and the Environmental Horticulture Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date January 2007. Reviewed February 2017. Visit the EDIS website at and
2. Edward F. Gilman, professor; and Laura P. Sadowski, horticultural information specialist; Department of Environmental Horticulture, UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

Publication #ENH1057

Release Date:February 21, 2017

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