Rural Electric Cooperative

Think Before You Plant!


At this time of year, many of us are working on landscape improvements, including the addition of new trees and shrubs to our property. Planting the right tree in the right place can provide many benefits, including shade, windbreaks and privacy. But you should also consider the proximity of power lines when choosing the location to plant a new tree or shrub, and avoid planting beneath existing lines or in front of the transformer box for underground line.

To determine suitable planting locations, first research the mature height for the type of tree you will be planting. For areas near houses and overhead utilities, there are three tree height zones, as follows:

* Low: The low height zone extends 15 feet on either side of overhead wires. Plant only large shrubs and small trees with mature heights of 20 feet or less within this area.

* Medium: To accommodate the width of taller trees, the medium height zone begins at least 15 feet from all utility lines. Select trees that grow 40 feet or less for planting within this zone.

* Tall: The tall height zone begins at least 35 feet from buildings and 65 feet from utility lines. Trees that grow taller than 40 feet are suitable for planting in this area.

Then, call Miss Utility at 8-1-1 at least three weekdays in advance to have your underground utilities marked. More information can be found online at: