O'Fallon Progress

City of O’Fallon encourages residents to love and maintain trees

O’Fallon Mayor Herb Roach.
O’Fallon Mayor Herb Roach.

Trees … they create an ecosystem to provide habitat and food for birds and other animals. Trees absorb carbon dioxide and potentially harmful gasses, such as sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, from the air and release oxygen. Trees help make the city of O’Fallon beautiful.

Trees do many great things, and we highly promote the existence and growth of trees in the city of O’Fallon. We continue to encourage tree planting by our residents and those building businesses in O’Fallon. In fact, our development code many times requires trees and landscaping to be planted at new developments. This has resulted in O’Fallon being named as a Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation for 20 consecutive years.

Trees and bushes, much like everything, need maintenance and upkeep or else they can become unsightly and even dangerous. Overgrown trees can pose a serious risk to not only buildings, but also people. Tree trimming is important to maintain your landscape’s overall appearance and safety for everyone who visits.

Dense, overgrown trees prevent the sun from warming paths, allowing ice and snow to build up on walkways during the winter, causing them to become slippery and dangerous.

It’s important not to risk the safety of others by obscuring the visibility of vehicle traffic on roads, or foot traffic on sidewalks. Overgrown trees and shrubs can endanger us all when they obstruct the view of traffic signs, pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists.

The most obvious risk associated with overgrown trees is property damage. Unpruned trees can pose a huge threat during a storm. Wind, lightning, and even snow or ice storms can all quickly and easily damage everything from a roof to a car. It doesn’t have to be a stormy day for an overgrown tree to fall — dead or even broken branches and limbs are already in a weakened state and can fall on a sunny day.

Please be courteous to your neighbors. If your trees or bushes have grown over your property line and extend onto your neighbor’s property, please make an effort to trim them if it may cause a dispute between you and your neighbor.

Overgrown trees and bushes, along with grass and weeds, need to be maintained to keep the community looking beautiful. Many residents take great pride in their yards and landscaping. Nevertheless, from time to time, there may be one of two property owners that let their trees, bushes, grass, and weeds grow out of control. One nuisance property can detract from the whole neighborhood. In addition to being unsightly, a nuisance property can possibly lower property values for their surrounding neighbors. So, please be a good neighbor and properly maintain your trees, bushes, grass, and weeds.

On a separate note, I wanted to remind everyone that City Council Meetings will be returning to City Hall beginning on August 6, 2018. They will also return to being televised on Charter Channel 993 and AT&T U-Verse Channel 99. City Council Meetings can also be viewed live or on-demand at ofallon.org.

As residents of O’Fallon, you should always be able to reach out to your elected officials and ask questions about what is happening in O’Fallon. Having open communications is important to me and something I care very deeply about. Thank you for reading, and please remember, my door is always open.