The City’s Development Services Department would like to remind everyone that effective February 1st, pruning of any type of oak tree is prohibited until July 1st, per Chapter 8, Article 8.09 Tree Trimming Protection.
Section 8.09.004 (Violations, Penalty and Enforcement) reads as follows:
(a) All species and varieties of oak wilt infected oak trees that are dead or substantially dead, and all red oak wood and firewood, which may serve as a breeding place for any carrier of said disease, are hereby declared to be public nuisances.
(b) Pruning or cutting of oak trees shall be prohibited in the spring months of February through June when fungal spore formation and beetle activity are highest unless such activities are completely unavoidable in order to protect the safety of people and property or the health of the tree. Golf courses and resorts are exempt from this prohibition from February 1st through February 14th. Pruning or cutting of oaks is permitted from July through January.
(c) It shall be unlawful to stack firewood taken from red oaks.
(d) It shall be unlawful for any person to transport, store or sell firewood within the city that was taken from red oak trees or unknown sources of firewood. Red oaks may not be retained for firewood under any circumstance due to the high risk of fungal mat formation and insect transmission.
(e) Red oaks that are dead or dying of oak wilt as determined by the city staff or the state forest service shall be cut at ground level, with all firewood and woody debris covered and hauled away or disposed of by burying, burning or chipping within three working days.
(f) Regardless of the time of year that a tree is cut or otherwise damaged by natural disaster and a wound occurs, neutral color paint must be applied immediately to all wounds of any size on susceptible oaks, including the cut surface of healthy oak stumps, pruning cuts, rubbing of branches together or on a roof or other structure creating open wounds, or branches with construction damage, or any spot where the bark has been removed to expose the wood beneath, in order to discourage potential insect/disease contamination. Failure to seal any wound immediately after the wound is discovered or occurs is an unlawful violation of this article.
(g) It shall be unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to knowingly violate the provisions of this article. Any person knowingly violating any of the provisions of this article shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and each and every day or portion thereof during which any violation of any provision of this article is committed, continued, or permitted, shall be considered a separate offense and upon the conviction of any such violation, such offense shall be punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) per day.
(h) The city's code officer is charged with the enforcement of the provisions of this article.
Please help us protect the City’s oak tree population from this devasting disease. You can report violations to the Development Service Office at 830-598-9959.
Thank you for helping keep Horseshoe Bay beautiful!