Tree for Me

We have a free tree for you!

At Toronto Parks and Trees Foundation, we believe everyone should have access to trees and the many benefits they provide. That’s why we’ve partnered with the City of Toronto to offer Tree For Me.

Tree For Me is a community-powered initiative that makes it easy for Toronto residents to get no-cost native trees for their homes. Tree matching and giveaway events are hosted by community groups across the city where residents can learn to plant and care for trees and receive a free tree to plant at home. With funding from the City of Toronto, Tree For Me events are made possible by dedicated grants that support the City of Toronto’s broader tree planting and stewardship efforts. Tree For Me helps put more trees in our yards, more trees in our communities, and more trees in our city.

step 1

Find Your Match

Selecting the right tree for the right place is key to successful tree planting. Before registering for your tree, take a moment to complete the quiz below to help you find the best tree for your home. You can also review tips on selecting a planting location and you can see all the available trees and shrubs in our species guide. Careful consideration will help you find the perfect match! Make note of your quiz results to include in the registration form below.

 

step 2

Pick an Event & Register

Tree For Me events happen annually in the Spring and Fall to correspond with local tree planting seasons. Community groups across Toronto receive grants to host these Tree For Me events where you can collect and learn about your new tree. These groups have two very important tasks: to make sure you get the right tree and to give you the knowledge required to get you started on your tree planting journey! See the dates and locations of upcoming Tree For Me events below.

Please note:

  • Participation is limited to residents of Toronto
  • All participants must attend the mandatory tree-planting and care workshop to receive their tree
  • Households are limited to two (2) trees per season.
  • Trees must be planted in the ground. Shrubs can be planted in containers larger than 1’x1′.
  • Non-profit and charitable organizations may request up to 10 trees by emailing treeforme@tptf.ca.
  • Trees received through the Tree For Me initiative cannot be used towards any tree planting requirement or obligation under any of the City’s tree by-laws, as a condition for planning and development approval, or any other laws or regulations.

step 3

Plant your tree

Before beginning, we recommend you do some additional research on your matched tree species to be sure it will work for your planting location and conditions. Once you’ve selected your species, follow the steps below to get started on planting your new tree!

Site Selection and Preparation

  • Consider how tall and wide your tree will grow and select an appropriate site
  • Consider obstacles like powerlines, sidewalks, nearby buildings, and other trees

Digging A Hole

  • Dig a saucer-shaped hole 3-4 times the width of the sapling’s container – this loosens the soil for easier root growth. Set soil to the side.
  • The depth of the hole should be slightly shallower than the container

Planting

  • Turn the potted tree on its side, and roll back and forth on the ground to loosen root/soil mass from container
  • Push base of container to loosen tree. Remove tree from container
  • Massage root/soil mass to loosen the tree’s roots
  • Place the tree in the middle of the hole so the root collar (where the roots meet the trunk) sits just at ground level
  • Ensure the tree is in an upright position
  • Fill the hole with the soil that was dug out.  Pat the soil with your hands or feet, but avoid extreme compaction!

Mulching

  • Apply mulch in a donut shape around the base of the tree extending as far out as the crown of the tree
  • Mulch should be applied in a layer that is roughly two inches deep
  • Avoid mulch volcanoes! Do not place mulch up against the trunk, since this can rot the tree’s trunk.

*Mulch will protect your tree’s roots from extreme hot or cold temperatures, maintain moisture, and prevent damage from weed whackers or lawn mowers.

Watering

  • To test whether your tree needs watering, dig your fingers into the soil about two inches deep at the base of the tree
  • If the soil is dry, your tree needs watering
  • Turn your hose on at a trickle
  • Place the hose at the base of the tree and allow for slow, deep watering. Leave your hose on for 45 minutes

*If you do not have a hose, drill a small hole in the bottom of a bucket, fill the bucket with water and place at the base of your tree.

Our Living Impact

20,000+

Trees and Shrubs Distributed

87%

Tree Survival Rate

190+

Community Events

500+

Volunteers

Notice to our park and tree enthusiasts!

It is with sad hearts that we announce that the Toronto Parks and Trees Foundation is shutting its doors, and will no longer be able to accept donations on behalf of park improvements across our great city. We are very proud of the work we have done together over the years, in partnership with a wide variety of community groups.