Citizen Pruner Course

“Taking the course has made me aware of a whole realm of the natural world in NYC that I previously did not look at or understand.” – George Shelden, Citizen Pruner

Stewardship and pruning hugely reduce a tree’s vulnerability to common urban threats such as pedestrian and vehicular traffic, drought and storms. In New York City, where there is limited funding for tree maintenance but significant need, Citizen Pruners provide a great asset to our urban environment.

The 12 hour Citizen Pruner Course consists of 5 sessions – 4 in the classroom and 1 field outing.


8 hours in the classroom – Students meet for four 2-hour classroom sessions. The comprehensive curriculum includes tree biology, street tree identification, common tree problems and solutions, tree stewardship and pruning.

4 hours in the field – The Saturday field outing is designed to provide students with the opportunity to practice pruning with their peers under the tutelage of their teacher.

Upon successful completion of the final exam, students receive a license from Trees New York and NYCParks to legally prune NYC street trees. Trees New York is the only institution designated to train and license Citizen Pruners in New York City.

The weekend field outing is mandatory. All sessions must be taken at the same location.

This is Trees New York’s only fee for service program. The course fee is $100.00

We are the only institution designated by NYCParks to license New Yorkers to legally prune street trees.  All Citizen Pruners must follow Trees New York’s Citizen Pruner Code of Conduct.  Please click on the link to read the Citizen Pruner Code of Conduct.   

Please Click to view course schedule and register.

  • Citizen Pruner class
    Removing dead and damaged limbs improves the overall health of the tree.