Community Forest Stewardship Plan
The Community Forest Stewardship Plan is available below. We welcome comments from the public on the Plan. Please contact City Arborist Randy Overstreet (email) with your comments at 721-5338.
Laramie Community Forest Stewardship Plan (Approved by City Council - Final publication format)
Shawver Tree Fund
Laramie, the Gem City of the Plains, should perhaps be thought of as a green gem. The abundance of trees makes Laramie appear like a verdant oasis in the middle of the sometimes stark Wyoming landscape. The wealth of trees and the cottonwood lined streets are among the many reasons residents love living in Laramie.
However, it will take on-going care and diligence to make sure that Laramie continues to be known as a Tree City USA. The Shawver Tree Fund was established in 2013 to help Laramie with the ongoing care of its community forest.
Chuck Shawver was a man passionate about Laramie’s trees. Kristen Petersen, Chuck Shawver’s daughter said about her father, “He especially worried about the city’s aging cottonwood trees and the long term plan for replacing them. It was a passion of his.” she said. “He spearheaded it (a plan for replacing Laramie’s older trees), but was so busy doing so many different things that it never really transpired. It just seems like unfinished business.” Shawver’s many contributions to Laramie are now living on through the Shawver Tree Fund, established by the Sunrise Rotary Club and the Laramie Rotary Club in memory of Chuck Shawver.
The Sunrise and Laramie Rotary Clubs partnered with Laramie Parks and Recreation Department to determine how best to use the Tree Fund in order to produce the most benefit to the community and to honor Chuck’s wishes. The purpose of the policy is to obtain the highest value, in the form of a cost share, from the donated funds of the Shawver Tree Fund in replacing dangerous trees and to add new trees in the right-of-way along city streets.
Trees purchased through the fund can be planted on public right-of-way land abutting residential property or on land maintained by the city. Government facilities can also use apply for the Shawver Tree Fund to plant trees in the right-of-way landscape area of the facility abutting Laramie streets. The cost share is 50% on tree purchases and shipping costs. The maximum amount paid by the fund per tree is $125. The maximum amount paid by the fund for each approved residential property or government facility is $500 per year. This will go a long way in helping Chuck Shawver’s family and friends see Chuck’s passion for Laramie’s trees grow into the future.
Property owners interested in the Shawver Tree Fund are asked to complete an application and note the requested tree species and the number of trees desired. The City Arborist will then consult with the property owner, check the right-of-way planting site for tree spacing and any conflicts with other trees or amenities and offer technical instruction in planting the trees.
The Shawver Tree Fund represents a wonderful opportunity for property owners to receive assistance in the purchase and placement of trees. Through the generous donations received the Laramie community will be able to reap the benefits of new trees for generations to come. The City of Laramie would like to extend their gratitude to everyone who has donated to the Shawver Tree Fund and the groups that have worked to see the fund come to fruition.
The Shawver Tree Fund Utilization Policy is a component of the Laramie Community Forest Stewardship Plan addressing aspects of tree maintenance in providing a safe, healthy and diverse tree canopy on public right-of-way and city maintained lands. For further questions related to the Shawver Tree Fund or the Laramie Community Forest Stewardship Plan please contact City Arborist Randy Overstreet (email) at 721-5338.
Steps to participate in the Shawver Tree Fund:
- Residential property owners and government facilities within the City of Laramie can review the Shawver Tree Fund Use Policy (link below), complete an application (link below) and return it to the City Arborist. Use the Recommended Tree list (link below) to help guide your selection of street trees to plant.
- The City Arborist or a representative will visit your property to determine the space available to plant right-of-way trees. The City will also review your tree species selected to see if they are a good fit with the space available and check availability with area tree nurseries. City personnel will contact the property owner with a confirmation on the number of trees and tree species.
- When the city and property owner are in agreement with number and tree species to plant the city will obtain lowest tree costs from local nurseries.
- The property owner will be contacted with their cost share amount.
- When the cost share from the property owner is received the City will order the trees.
- When the trees arrive the City will deliver the trees to the property along with written and verbal (if desired) instructions on proper handling, planting and long term care.