Public Works and Environmental Services

CONTACT INFORMATION: Our administrative offices are open 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Mon - Fri - In-person meetings by appointment only.
703-324-1770 TTY 711
12055 Government Center Parkway
Suite 518, Fairfax, Va 22035
Brian Keightley
Division Director, Urban Forest Management

Tree Preservation and Planting Fund


tree plantingThe purpose of the Tree Preservation and Planting Fund (TPPF) is to support efforts by the Fairfax County government and the community at large to protect, manage and enhance its urban forest resources. The TPPF is a fiscal mechanism established to collect, manage, disburse, and track funds specifically used to support programs and policies relating to the preservation and management of existing forest tracts; and the planting of new trees by governmental and non-profit entities on both public properties and commonly owned open space. The following are examples of programs and policies that the TPPF could be used to support:

  • Tree planting programs that support a regional urban forestry measure in future Metropolitan Washington Area Ozone Non-attainment Air Quality Plans.
  • Components of the Board of Supervisors’ Environmental Agenda relating to the conservation of trees, and forests; and the conservation of other natural resources such as air, water, and soil when tree conservation practices can be used to conserve these resources.
  • Components of the Fairfax County Tree Action Plan relating to the conservation of trees, and forests and other natural resources.
  • Components of the Fairfax County Park Authority Natural Resource Management Plan that relate to the conservation and management of tree resources.
  • Components of watershed management plans that relate to tree planting and the need for conserving tree cover to protect water quality.
  • Tree-related programs or projects that are identified in the annual Environmental Improvement Plan.
  • Tree-related projects, matters, policies and ordinances approved by the Board of Supervisors

See Tree and Shrub Planting Guidelines.

The following types of projects and activities can be supported by TPPF funding. Projects that will directly result in the preservation and/or expansion of the County’s tree canopy coverage will be given priority. Examples include:

  • Tree preservation, planting and maintenance projects and activities implemented on County properties and managed by County agencies that are above and beyond routine maintenance requirements.
  • Tree planting programs organized and managed by non-profit tree planting organizations and implemented on publicly owned land or on common open space owned by homeowners’ associations.

Projects that could be used to enhance or strengthen direct efforts to preserve and/or expand the County’s tree canopy coverage will also be considered. Examples include:

  • Development, production, and distribution of educational materials that encourages stewardship and conservation of urban forest resources
  • Workshops and seminars that encourage stewardship and conservation of urban forest resources
  • Research conducted by local governments and Virginia State universities and colleges that could be used to advance the fields of arboriculture and urban forestry
  • Urban forestry internships utilized by County agencies to help manage forest and tree resources
  • Other projects that support efforts to cultivate a healthy and functional urban forest and to educate and inspire the community to value, conserve and enhance this resource

The following groups are examples of organizations that could receive funding from the TPPF, as administered by UFMD:

  • Fairfax County Agencies
  • Regional governmental agencies
  • 501(C)(3) non-profit organizations

Other than for commonly owned open space, private property owners may not apply directly for TPPF funds to plant trees on privately-owned parcels and lots. However, private property owners may receive trees and planting supplies for use on private property, if those plant materials and supplies are made available free of charge through a governmental agency or 501.C3 non-profit organization to the public at large as part of a community-wide educational program or an effort to increase community tree cover levels to provide specific environmental benefits to the community at large.

In addition to supporting County policies, programs and projects that conserve urban forest resources, proposals must be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, accountable, and set to a timeline. All proposals to use the TPPF must address the following evaluation criteria:

  1. Specific: The proposal must specify a project objective and a premise that supports that objective. That objective should relate directly to an existing County program, policy, or project such as those identified under the TPPF Purpose section.
  2. Measurable: The proposal must provide a set of criteria that clearly defines when the project objective has been achieved.
  3. Achievable: The proposal must provide a synopsis of prior projects, research and/or other background to demonstrate that the project’s premise(s) is sound.
  4. Realistic: The proposal must provide the level of logistical and organizational resource information needed to demonstrate that project objectives can be achieved within the given timeline and given the level of resources that can be applied.
    As appropriate, logistical information should include:
    • Location of all project activities
    • Sequence of actions that must be taken
    • General description of site conditions (slope, exposure, constraints)
    • Plant quantities, species and sizes that will be used in project
    • Units/numbers and costs of supplies and materials needed
    • Anticipated hours and costs of any paid staff involved
    • Documentation of permission needed to gain access to planting sites
    • Agreement to locate underground and overhead utilities
    • Statement of safety concerns and plans
    • Statement of liability coverage
    • Statement describing measures to protect plantings from deer
    • Planned maintenance activities
    As appropriate, organizational resource information should include:
    • Additional funding that might become available to support the project
    • Specialized equipment or tools available to the organization
    • The numbers and positions of personnel that will be used
    • Expertise and educational backgrounds of project manager, workers, and volunteers
    • Numbers of available volunteers
  5. Accountable: The proposal must identify a project manager and an alternate contact person responsible for the successful completion of the proposed project
  6. Set to a timeline: The proposal must provide a specific date that the project objective(s) will be completed.

All proposals to use TPPF funds shall be submitted to the Director of the Urban Forest Management Division (Urban Forester), DPWES for review and approval by an inter-agency panel including representatives from the Fairfax County Tree Commission, Urban Forest Management Division, Stormwater Planning Division, and Northern VA Soil and Water Conservation District. Proposals shall be evaluated for purpose, technical validity, and the benefit provided by using the criteria established in this report. To the degree possible, the Urban Forester will ensure that the approved annual project list includes sites distributed throughout the various magisterial districts in the County. The panel will complete review of proposals and prepare written notification of approval or disapproval decisions in accordance with the timeline below.

Timing of TPPF proposal evaluations, disbursement, tracking and reporting activities are driven by the County budget cycle and seasonal tree planting seasons. The sequence of the following dates and activities relates major TPPF milestones:

Dates TPPF Milestones
April 1- May 15 Submission of new TPPF proposals
June 1  Review and approval/disapproval of proposals by inter-agency panel
June 15  Approval/disapproval notifications in the mail
June 30 Disbursement of approved funds by DPWES
October 1 Start of autumn planting season, or as approved by UFMD
October 15 - November 30 Submission of new TPPF proposals
December 15  End of autumn planting season, or as approved by UFMD
December 15  Review and approval/disapproval of proposals by inter-agency panel
December 31  Approval/disapproval notifications in the mail
January 15 Disbursement of approved funds by DPWES
February 1 Autumn planting/activity tracking reports due to UFMD
February 28 Review of autumn planting/activity tracking reports
March 1 Start of spring planting season, or as approved by UFMD
May 15 End of spring planting season, or as approved by UFMD
June 1 Spring planting/activity tracking reports due to UFMD
June 1 - June 15 Preparation of TPPF Annual Report by UFMD
June 30 Final TPPF Annual Report in NIP to BOS, copies to Tree Commission and
VDOF Area Forester

The Urban Forester will require TPPF fund recipients to submit seasonal planting/activity reports that:

  • Summarize the project objectives
  • Itemize the placement of trees
  • Itemized geographic disbursement required through proffer or development conditions
  • Itemize hours contributed by volunteers and paid staff
  • Summarize the size, the numbers and species planted
  • Summarize the survival rates of planting projects
  • Provide before, during and after digital photos
  • Summarize the distribution of any educational materials developed or distributed by TPPF funds
  • Summarize the results of any education and outreach efforts funded by TPPF funding
  • Summarize the results of any research funded by the TPPF
  • Summarize the social or environmental benefits that have resulted from the project
Fairfax Virtual Assistant