TRAILS EXTRA: Rogue Planting


We all want to see our neighborhood trails look their best. But taking beautification into your own hands by planting trees near a trail isn’t such a good idea, says Dallas Park Board member Lee Kleinman.

“We call it ‘rogue planting’,” he says. “It’s when well-intending neighbors take it upon themselves to plant trees on public land, like near a trail.”

The problem, he says, is that this creates more work for the city.

“A lot of times it prevents our crews from being able to use the ride-on mowers because there are unplanned trees there. So the crews will have to use the push-mowers, which costs the city more time, labor, and money.”

And most of these “rogue” trees don’t end up surviving because the people who plant them don’t return to water them enough. A better option, he says, is to contact the city’s tree bank. The city will provide you with a tree that fits an assigned location near you, as long as you commit to watering it for the first two years of its life.

To adopt a tree for your neighborhood trail, call the city tree bank at 214.670.4293


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  • Eric

    City of Dallas parks are open from 5 a.m. to midnight.

  • Tim Dalbey

    Somehow I do not believe that the few people planting the few “rogue trees” is nearly the problem like we have in our area where the forested lands (mostly Park Department property) have been under siege by “do gooder” organizations that have no expertise or knowledge about native plants and habitats. The “do-gooders” do not reside in our area or associate with homeowner groups and just come into our area where we hike, designate an area for a new trail where one already exists, clear a new much wider trail next to an existing trail, cut down trees of all ages (50 years or more in some instances) and disturb sensitive escarpment habitats where rare plants grow. They have no expertise or knowledge or these plants that are part of the reason the foot path trails we made exists in the first place. They have no regard for anyone’s expertise in the area when it comes to the plants. ATV riders rip through the area and the Park Department does little to deter such activity. Thieves come in and dig up trees for their own landscaping or sell the trees. For the last two years the Park Department turns on soccer field lights till midnite when no one is using the field. The Park Department turns on the 22 incredibly bright pole lights (talk about light pollution, houses that front or back onto the park are lit up like prison yards) around the Gateway Park walkway from 5 PM to midnite throughout the year. Last time I checked at least in the summer it is not dark from eight to nine o’clock during the summer months and people are gone from the park by 10:30 and Dallas has a park curfew, so why are they on till midnite. During the winter months especially on cold days (<40 degrees) no one goes outside especially at night and the park is empty so why are the lights on till midnite? How much does this cost the taxpayers? Don’t get me started on the Park Department and the Park Board. Let’s talk Mr. Kleinman there are some larger problems than a few planted trees.