Public Works and Environmental Services

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

Urban Forestry FAQs

If a tree presents an immediate life-threatening hazard, including falling onto electric wires or it is blocking a public road, call 9-1-1.
Hazardous Trees and Who To Call

Hazardous Trees and Who To Call

Stay away and never attempt to approach or touch trees or limbs that contact power lines, as they are considered extremely dangerous.

If there is a tree fallen across utility lines, please call the appropriate electrical company, such as Dominion Power, 1-888-667-3000, TTY 1-800-522-4015, or NOVEC, 703-335-0500 or 1-888-335-0500, TTY 711.

Visit Tree Resources - Who To Call for information on what to do and who to call about hazardous Trees.

A hazardous tree is a tree, or a portion of a tree, that is in danger of falling and presents a threat to life or property. Find out more about the signs of a hazardous tree and information about pruning and removal at Tree Removal.

If you believe that your neighbor is removing trees or disturbing land illegally, visit the Reporting Land Development Concerns page for information on how to report such activities.

Tree Selection

Tree Selection

Visit Tree Selection for information on what to consider when choosing a tree to get the right tree planted in the right place, buying guidance and information on native plants.

Tree Care

Tree Care

Visit Tree Planting and Care for information on how to properly plant a tree and various tree planting resources.

Using proper pruning techniques is extremely important to the long-term health and viability of trees. Find tips and best practices for pruning and what makes tree topping so harmful at Tree Planting and Care

Trees and grass are healthier when they are not forced to compete with each other. The best approach is generally to allow a mulched area around the perimeter of the drip line of the tree. Learn more at Tree Planting and Care

A healthy tree has many built-in methods of resisting normal insect and disease invasions.Identifying causes of tree stress and mitigating them early can help a tree to resist or fight harmful agents. Learn more at Tree Planting and Care

Tree Removal

Tree Removal

In general, there are no laws or regulations in Virginia that prohibit you from removing individual trees on your own property.  Some specific regulations, however, might impact your property. Visit Tree Removal for more information.

The condition of your trees can have a significant affect on the value and safety of your property. Therefore, it is in your best interest to be an informed consumer when seeking the services of an arborist. Find out how to hire an arborist.

Insects and Diseases

Insects and Diseases

The asian longhorned beetle is one of the most serious and destructive tree pests to strike North America, but to date have not been found in Fairfax County. Learn more at Asian Longhorned Beetle.

Emerald ash borer is a beetle that was accidentally introduced into North America from Asia. It does not generally spread great distances on its own but is typically spread as various ash materials (firewood, wood chips, nursery stock, etc.) are transported from infested to noninfested areas. EAB infests all species of ash and is almost always fatal without treatment. Learn more at Emerald Ash Borer

Severe infestations of cankerworms can cause widespread defoliation, tree stress and possible tree death. Major infestations and defoliation have occurred in Fairfax County. Learn more at Fall Cankerworms.

In 1869, the spongy moth*, Lymantria dispar, escaped from a Massachusetts lab and became established in North America. It continues to be a serious insect threat to trees and shrubs in the United States. Learn More at Spongy Moth.

The spotted lanternfly is an invasive insect that is native to East Asia. Like many exotic insects, it has no known natural enemies in the United States. Spotted lanternfly was first detected in Fairfax County in 2022.

Help prevent the spotted lanternfly from spreading. Learn more at Spotted Lanternfly

Large webby tents in tree branches are caused by fall webworm. This is a native caterpillar that spins webs over leaves of deciduous trees. This insect does not pose a serious risk to trees and native trees are well adapted to this pest.

Outreach and Education

Outreach and Education

Public Works strives to protect and enhance the natural environment, but we can’t do it alone. There are numerous opportunities for volunteers who want to help keep their streets and streams clean and their natural areas green. Learn more at Volunteering

Urban Forestry offers programs on the importance and benefits of trees as well as current threats posed by invasive forest pests.Learn more at Urban Forestry Education Programs

Fairfax Virtual Assistant