Tree City USA. An Arbor Day Foundation program.The Parks and Forestry Division of the Department of Public Works is responsible for the care and management of all trees on public areas. This includes planting, removals, and maintenance of over 4,000 public street and park trees.

The Village of McFarland is proud to have earned Tree City USA recognition annually since 2010. Recently, earning the Growth Award for 2022 (PDF).

As defined by McFarland Municipal Code 59.20(n) Public trees and shrubs. All trees and shrubs growing on or in that part of every street, the grade of which has been established lying between the lot line and the curb, or in the center or side plots in all boulevards and parkways, and in all public parks or grounds belonging to the Village.

Tree Inventory

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) provides an interactive map to view trees in your community. To learn about McFarland's tree inventory or other communities that partake in this program, visit the DNR's Tree Plotter Inventory website (example screenshot below).

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Community Tree Map

When navigating the website, utilize the search bar on the right hand side, or scroll to select the community. Once the inventory loads on the map, each dot represents a tree. For additional interactivity, site visitors can click on a dot (tree) to learn more.

Notable Tree Ordinances

Oak Wilt Management 59-23(d)(e)

  1. Whereas the Village Board recognizes that oak wilt is spread more readily from tree to tree during the spring and summer months than during other times of the year, the Village Board hereby declares its intention to help control the spread of this disease by regulating work on these tree species during this sensitive period.
  2. No removal, pruning or maintenance of any oak tree shall be conducted annually between the dates of March 1 to November 1 without written permission from the Village Forester.
    1. The Village Forester may grant an exemption in cases where pruning or removal is necessary to abate an imminent and immediate hazard or in cases of storm-damaged trees.
    2. The Village Forester may grant an exemption for public utilities; however, such an exemption shall be stipulated within the work permit issued by the Village to the utility as described in Section 59-24.

In the case of any exemption, all possible precautions shall be exercised in order to limit the infection of these trees, including the application of a sterile wound dressing/paint to pruning wounds created during this time. Such wound dressing should be applied at the time pruning occurs.

Trimming 59-26(a)

  1. Trees and shrubs standing in or upon any public right-of-way between the lot line and the curb or ledge of the improved street or upon any private premises adjacent to any public street, right-of-way, park, playground, or place shall be kept trimmed by the owner of the premises upon or in front of which such trees or shrubs are standing so that the lowest branches projecting over the public street or right-of-way provide a clearance of not less than 13½ feet and over all other public places of not less than ten feet. The Village Forester may waive the provisions of this Section for newly planted trees if the Village Forester determines that they do not interfere with public travel, obstruct the light of any street light, or endanger public safety. Further exemptions may be granted for shade trees located in Village Parks. 

View all Village ordinances regarding trees and shrubs in Article 59-II.

Visit the McFarland Yard Waste and Brush site to learn about proper disposal opportunities.

Private Property Tree Maintenance 

Private property trees are those that do not meet the definition of Public Trees and Shrubs (McFarland Municipal Code 59.20(n)). Property owners are responsible for tree maintenance and removal on their lot. This responsibility is known as “the duty of care,” to take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which a tree owner could reasonably foresee may result in harm or injury. When a tree owner fails to exercise their responsibility the result may be a claim for negligence.

Related Links & Resources via the Arbor Day Foundation

  • Tree Facts
    • What can a tree do for you? A lot. Check out all the ways – sometimes unexpected – that trees positively affect us, our communities, and our world.
  • Benefits of Trees
    • Trees can add value to your home, help cool your home and neighborhood, break cold winds to lower your heating costs, and provide food for wildlife.
  • Benefits of Trees - For Kids!
    • A tree education hub, including online activities, printable activity sheets, and videos designed for 2nd through 4th graders.
  • Economics of Urban Forestry in the United States
    • Urban trees are a powerful force in America. They create jobs and opportunity. They cool our homes, increase property values, and deliver important benefits to society. Now, in a first-of-its-kind study, researchers at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln Bureau of Business Research, in cooperation with the Arbor Day Foundation and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service, have quantified the value of the urban forestry sector to our national economy and our quality of life.