The goal of Minnetonka’s park restoration program is to restore native plant habitats in the city’s woodlands, prairies and wetlands. With the help of contractors, volunteers and city crews, we work to control non-native invasive species and protect native plants, especially those with high value to pollinators, birds and wildlife. We use practices that will help prevent erosion, minimize herbicide use, build the soil and improve water quality. Small scale, volunteer re-planting projects occur annually.
The city monitors the safety and health of trees on public property and along the roadside right-of-ways (the boulevard/road edges). While trees along the road are not owned by the city, Minnetonka shares the responsibility with homeowners to maintain trees in the right-of-way and ensure safety for traffic and pedestrians.
Most pruning takes place between November and March, when our trained crew is available for tree work and disease transmission is not a concern. The first priority for tree work is to ensure safety along the right-of-way. This includes mitigating sightline concerns and removing hazard trees and branches. Next, crews prune along roads prior to road reconstruction.
Call our forestry information line at 952-988-8407 to:
- Make a sightline or safety request
- Report a storm-damaged or hazard tree in the right-of-way
- Report a diseased tree on city property (June – Sept. 1)
The city's tree crew prunes and/or removes trees and shrubs to maintain safety for traffic and pedestrians along public roadways and in parks.
- Trees within six feet of the road edge (curb) are located in the right-of-way. Trees over six inches in diameter are pruned as needed to keep the adjacent roadway safe.
- Woody shrubs and trees six inches in diameter and smaller are removed within six feet of the road edge to avoid sightline issues.
- Trees are pruned to provide 18-20 feet of clearance over the road surface. This prevents branches from ripping when tall vehicles such as plows, street sweepers, and school buses pass by.
- The City of Minnetonka has an ordinance (845.010) that requires vegetation on corners to be maintained at a two-and-a-half foot maximum height for safety reasons. The corner is defined as 25 feet in each direction on intersecting streets, and everything included in the enclosed triangle.
- Evergreens (pines, spruce, arborvitaes, etc.) and formal hedges pose special challenges for pruning. Evergreens grow symmetrically and do not respond well to one-sided pruning. Hedges generally need to be trimmed one or two times each year to maintain aesthetics. The city intends to trim each area once every 10 years. For this reason, we ask for your assistance in:
- Maintaining hedges and existing evergreens at least six feet behind the edge of the road.
- Not planting evergreens within 20 feet of the road edge
The city’s plant pest program manages tree diseases such as Dutch elm disease and oak wilt on private and public property in order to prevent epidemic-level outbreaks. The program also actively prepares for emerging or new threats to the community forest, including emerald ash borer.
Natural resources staff provide consultation and inspection services to residents to diagnose and verify if a tree has Dutch elm disease, oak wilt or emerald ash borer. Our tree inspectors also scout the city by street in summer.
Call the forestry office at 952-988-8407 (between June 1–Sept. 1) if you suspect a tree has been affected by any of the following pests: