Land and trees

Trees - check before you chop

There are many reasons why a tree in Auckland might be protected.

Some are protected because of their historical significance, age, or cultural value. Others, like coastal Pohutukawa trees, preserve the ecosystem around them by preventing erosion.

There are several sets of rules under which a tree on your property might be protected.

If you want to cut down, prune, or even work near a tree on your property, it's best to check with us first, so we can provide up-to-date information on all the rules which apply.


General tree protection rules

The general tree protection rules for trees within the 'urban environment' that were previously in the Resource Management Act were removed on 4 September, 2015. 

However, trees that are listed in any of the district plans, trees in significant ecological areas, and trees outside the urban environment remain subject to general tree protection rules.


Other types of tree protection

Some trees are protected under the district plans, because they are considered to be significant, historic, or important for amenity or preventing erosion.

They can be referred to as listed, notable or scheduled trees, because there is a schedule of protected trees in each district plan, which relates to different areas of Auckland. 

Your tree may also be protected: 

  • as part of a condition on a resource consent
  • by a covenant or consent notice on the title
  • because it is subject to a general tree protection rule within a 'rural environment'.


Working on or near a protected tree

If you remove, prune or work near a protected tree on your property without first applying for resource consent, you may be fined under the Resource Management Act.

Types of work that may incur a fine if done near a protected tree include:

  • excavation
  • construction, including decks and retaining walls
  • depositing material
  • storing material beneath branches and around roots.


Contact us

To check the rules that apply to a tree on your property, contact us and ask to speak to a planner.

To apply for resource consent, see types of resource consent.

Check before you chop

There are many reasons why a tree in Auckland might be protected.

Some are protected due to their historical significance, age, or cultural value. Others, like coastal Pohutukawa trees, preserve the ecosystem around them by preventing erosion.

There are several sets of rules under which a tree on your property might be protected.

Your tree may be protected because:

  • it is scheduled (on the list of notable trees in the district plan)
  • it is protected as part of a condition on a resource consent
  • it is protected by a covenant or consent notice on the title
  • it is subject to a general tree protection rule within a 'rural environment'.

If you want to cut down, prune, or even work near a tree on your property, it's best to check with us first, so we can provide up-to-date information on all the rules which apply.

Call us on 09 301 0101 and we will help you confirm the status of your tree and if your work needs resource consent.

Trees on your neighbour's property

You can trim back any branches that hang over your side of the boundary with your neighbour. If the tree is protected, you may need resource consent to do the work.

Call us on 09 301 0101 to confirm if the tree is protected.

If resource consent is needed, you need to make the application even though the tree is on your neighbour's property.

Talk to your neighbour to discuss what you plan to do. You'll need their permission so you can include it in your application.

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