Permissible Tree Planting

This guide provides information for selecting parkway trees not a part of the Share the Cost program. Trees are vital part of Flossmoor infrastructure, contributing energy savings, filtering Stormwater runoff and enhancing property values. This guide encourages choices compatible with the planting locations, minimizing damage to other public improvements and promotes species diversity.  Any tree planted on the parkway will require the completion of the Occupation of Public Right of Way permit. 

Occupation of Public Right of Way Permit Application (PDF)

Permissible Tree Planting List


Scientific name

Tree Description

Bur Oak

Quercus macrocarpa

The stately bur oak, native to the Midwest, is a great choice as a shade tree and for specimen plantings in parks, spacious yards, and other large areas. Read more.

Northern Red Oak

Quercus rubra

Northern red oak is native to the Midwest and is one of the faster growing oaks for the home landscape. The leaves are handsome throughout the year, emerging pinkish-red, turning lustrous dark green in summer, and changing to russet-red to bright red in autumn. Its tolerance of salt and air pollution makes it a good tree for more exposed areas. Read more.

White Oak

Quercus alba

White oak is a massive, long-lived stately tree with wide-spreading horizontal branches and wine-red fall color. This native tree provides shade for larger landscapes and parks. Read more.

Swap White Oak

Quercus bicolor

Swamp white oak is a striking tree with attractive peeling bark, especially on young trees. The lustrous, lobed leaves have a two-tone appearance, dark green on top with a silvery-white underside. Fall color is an orangeish-gold to yellow in mid-autumn. An excellent shade tree for any landscape. Read more.

Shagbark Hickory

Carya ovata

Plant a shagbark hickory in a large landscape for excellent shade. This Midwest native is named for its bark, which peels away in large, flat, curving plates, giving the tree a shaggy appearance. As a member of the walnut family, the hickory produces edible nuts. Read more.

Bitternut Hickory

Carya cordiformis

Bitternut hickory is a large north American native tree, best reserved for larger landscapes. Like all hickories, debris from its fruit drops from late summer throughout autumn, making fall cleanup in urban areas more challenging. Read more.

Hop Hornbeam

Ostrya virginiana

Also known as Ironwood. A dainty but tough understory tree with beautiful birch-like leaves, grayish-brown flaky bark, fine-textured drooping branches, and attractive hop-like fruits. Ironwood is considered one of Illinois' toughest native hardwoods and is not only ornamental but resistant to many disease and insect problems. Excellent tree for naturalized landscapes. Read more.

American Hornbeam
Carpinus caroliniana

The American hornbeam is a native forest understory tree in the Chicago area, making it useful for shady landscapes and naturalized or woodland gardens. New leaves emerge reddish-purple, changing to dark green, then turn yellow to orange-red in the fall, offering a kaleidoscope of color throughout the year. Read more.

Canada Serviceberry Amelanchier canadensis

Plant advice from The Morton Arboretum: This large deciduous shrub with many colony-forming erect stems is often found growing in swampy, wet sites in Eastern North America. In yards and landscapes in the Midwest, Canada Serviceberry is best suited for wet sites. It has white blooms in early spring followed by oval green leaves and edible red fruit, attractive to birds, in mid to late summer. The fall color is orange-red. Read more.

Black Walnut
Juglans nigra

The black walnut is a Chicago-area native tree that provides excellent shade for large properties. It needs to be sited with care, since the tree produces a chemical that is toxic to some other plants. This tree attracts wildlife including squirrels and the banded hairstreak butterfly. Read more.

Juglans cinerea

Due to susceptibility to butternut canker, butternuts are not recommended for planting anywhere in this region and usually require removal and/or replacement. Disease-resistant cultivars may exist. Butternut, also called white walnut, is a native tree found throughout the Midwest in moist, well-drained soils. Butternut canker, an introduced fungus, has killed off many native stands of butternut. Read more.

Sweet-gum Liquidambar styraciflua

Known for its unique star-shaped leaves with outstanding yellow, red, and purple fall color. Sweet-gum can be an excellent shade tree in the right location, away from foot traffic where the spiky "gumball" fruits will not be an annoyance. Read more.


Liriodendron tulipifera

The tulip-tree is one of the largest native trees in North America. It is a member of the magnolia family and has distinct tulip-shaped characteristic in its leaves, flowers, and fruit. The showy, goblet-shaped, orange-yellow-green flowers appear in late spring after the leaves; the cone-like seed clusters sit upright on the branches. The golden-yellow fall color of the tulip-tree makes this an choice for large landscapes. Read more.

Ginkgo (male)

Ginkgo biloba

Ginkgo is a very pest-resistant tree. It has interesting, fan-shaped leaves that turn vivid yellow in fall. Only male trees should be purchased as the females produce messy fruit that have a potent odor. Read more.


Celtis occidentalis

The hackberry is a Chicago-area native and a sturdy, tolerant shade tree for streets and parkways, or parks and other large areas. Its fleshy, purple-brown berries ripen in late summer and persist through winter. Read more

Black Alder
Alnus glutinosa

European black alder has invasive traits that enable it to spread aggressively. This tree is under observation and may be listed on official invasive species lists in the near future. Read more.

Little-leaved linden
Tilia cordata (Greenspire)

Little-leaved linden is a great shade tree for lawns or parkway plantings in urban settings due to its ability to withstand polluted environments. It has shiny dark green leaves that turn a clear yellow in fall, and in summer it has dangling, fragrant pale yellow flowers. This tree is prone to attack by Japanese beetles. Read more.

Redmond Linden
Tilia euchlora

Also known as American basswood. Redmond linden is native to the Chicago area and is often used as a specimen or dense shade tree. Its heart-shaped leaves and fragrant flowers in June make it especially attractive for people, while songbirds and blue jays are attracted to its seeds and use the tree for shelter. Read more.

Red Maple
Acer rubrum

Red maple is a widely adaptable large tree common to the woods of eastern North America. A red tinge can be found in its flowers, twigs, and seeds, but it is most notable for the scarlet of its leaves in fall. Red maple needs plenty of room for its dense, spreading root system. Fall color can be yellow rather than red, so select a cultivar bred for red fall color. Read more.

Sugar Maple
Acer saccharum

Sugar maple is a Midwest native loved for its exceptional fall color ranging from brilliant yellow to burnt-orange. In summer, its lustrous foliage provides excellent shade, making it a great choice for parks, golf courses, and home landscapes where its roots can spread. Black maple (Acer nigrum), once considered a separate species, is now included as a subspecies of sugar maple. Read more.

Bradford Pear
Pyrus calleryana

Callery pear has invasive traits that enable it to spread aggressively. This tree is under observation and may be listed on official invasive species lists in the near future. Review of risks should be undertaken before selecting this tree for planting sites. The various cultivars of this species are more commonly available than the species itself. Callery pear has a weak wood and branch structure and is susceptible to ice storm damage. Read more.

Kentucky Coffeetree
Gymnocladus dioious

The Kentucky coffeetree's tolerance to pollution and a wide range of soils makes it a suitable tree for urban environments. Native to the Midwest, this tree bears leathery, reddish-brown seed pods that add winter interest to the Midwestern landscape. Read more.

Taxoduim distichum

This stately conifer, native to the Midwest, often is found in groupings in parks and larger spaces, along streets, and around lakes. Unlike most cone-bearing trees, bald-cypress loses its needles each winter and grows a new set in spring. Hardy and tough, this tree will adapt to a wide range of soil types, whether wet, dry, or even swampy.

River Birch
Betula nigra

River birch is a popular, fast-growing native tree for the home landscape. Attractive salmon-pink to reddish-brown bark exfoliates to reveal lighter inner bark. Dark green foliage turns a beautiful buttery yellow in the fall. This species is resistant to bronze birch borer (BBB).

Contact Us

  1. Public Works

    Email the Department

    Public Works Facility
    1700 Central Park Avenue
    Flossmoor, IL 60422

    Hours of Operations 
    7:00 am - 3:30 pm

    Phone: 708-957-4100
    Fax: 708-798-0299

    Staff Directory