Tree Warden

The  Tree Warden is appointed by the Select Board and has education and knowledge regarding trees and their health as well as the inherent risks that trees have by their very nature. The tree Warden cares for all the shade trees on public lands in your town, such as parks, town commons, public streets, schools, and town forests.

You may not know this, but since the late 1890's, all cities and towns in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts must have a Tree Warden to care for trees on public property, according to our General Laws.

An important public trust, todays Tree Wardens often perform services with other community resources committed to the preservation of natural resources, community image and the development of Urban Forestry Programs.

On a day-to-day basis a Tree Warden must plan, organize, control and be accountable for all authorized activities in the urban forest. There is a great deal of management responsibility in being a Tree Warden. This includes working closely with residents and the Planning Board. Tree Wardens must evaluate hazardous tree removal and utility arboricultural operations by oversight of work by outside contractors with timely inspections, usually supervising many projects at once. In our high-tech world, the tree warden must strive for the public safety and the safety of tree workers. Tree Wardens also implement public service environmental programs with both Town officials and nonprofit volunteer groups such as beautification groups, garden clubs, environmental groups and youth groups such as Girl and Boy Scouts.

In fact, Tree Warden's provide leadership and motivation about our urban environment. They communicate with the general public, outside organizations and community departments while investigating and resolving a broad range of citizen concerns. One of the most fun and exciting items of the Tree Warden's job is to coordinate and implement annual Arbor Day (usually in the spring on the last Friday of April) observance and provide field related educational services to organizations and the general public.

Blair J. Crane, MQTW
Norfolk Tree Warden
Director of Public Works