Tree regulations

Most vegetation in Nillumbik generally requires Council approval to be removed or pruned. We encourage you to seek Council advice before you proceed with removing vegetation in the Shire.


Clause 52 of the Nillumbik General Local Law 1 is to regulate the

  • removal
  • destruction or killing of
  • damage to or interference with any substantial tree on private land by requiring a permit.

Applies to

All private land within the Municipal district

What land is affected?

All private land in within the Municipal district

Who requires a permit? 

Persons wishing to remove, destroy, kill, damage or interfere with any substantial tree on private land.

Here is what you need to know

Clause 52 of the Nillumbik General Local Law 1 will apply from 20 January 2023. This clause outlines when a permit is required to remove, destroy, damage, interfere or kill a ‘substantial tree’. A ‘substantial tree’ means a tree or palm that has a:

  • trunk circumference of 50cm or greater measured at one metre above ground level;
  • total circumference of all its trunks of 50cm or greater measured at one metre above ground level;
  • trunk circumference of 50cm or greater measured at its base; or
  • trunk circumference of all its trunks of 50cm or greater measured at its base.

Some exemptions from the Amenity Tree Local Law permit requirement apply to properties that are outside of the Urban Growth Boundary or properties within a designated Bushfire Prone Area or the Bushfire Management Overlay. An exemption also applies where permission has already been provided for in a planning permit issued under the Nillumbik Planning Scheme; where the tree is dead; if the tree is a Pinus radiata (pine tree); or if the tree is listed on the Shire of Nillumbik Environmental Weed List 2009.

To check if a property is within the Bushfire Area Prone mapping or is outside the Urban Growth Boundary, visit the VicPlan website where you can input the property address to check.

To check if a property requires a Local Laws permit under the Amenity Trees Local Law, contact Council’s Planning Services team on 9433 3343.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact Council’s Planning Services team on 9433 3343 or email

How to apply for tree removal under the Local Law

Do your research

Ensure you have read all background information regarding the process of applying for a permit. 

Talk to Council first

To minimise delays, speak to our Planning Services team to get assistance and advice to help complete your application. 

Gather supporting documentation

  • A current copy of your Certificate of Title from Landata (searched within the last three months and including a copy of any registered covenants and/or Section 173 agreements)

  • A scaled and dimensioned site plan showing: all property boundaries; the location of the tree/s proposed to be removed or otherwise damaged or interfered with; all buildings on the property; and driveways.

  • If you are applying for more than two trees, an arborist report must be prepared by an arborist. This report must be prepared in accordance with Australian Standard AS4970/2009, prepared by a person suitably qualified and experienced, for all trees proposed to be removed. The report should detail as a minimum:
    - The species, height, girth, canopy width and approximate age of all native and exotic trees proposed to be removed
    - A statement regarding the health, structure and vigour of the tree/s
    - Comments in relation to the future health of the tree/s
    - A recommendation based on all of the above

Depending on the reason for the application, the following documentation may be requested to assist the assessing officer with their assessment of the application:

  • engineer report
  • development plans
  • relevant building or planning permits
  • photographs
  • bushfire risk documentation
  • other supporting information reasonably required.

Register for online services

Before you lodge an application, you will need to register for access to Council's online portal.

Register for Council's online services

Please note:

  • You will need to select 'applicant' as your customer type.
  • Most registrations are approved within one business day.
  • You will only need to register once - you will then have access to lodge future applications and other requests online.

Have your credit card ready

Please note we are unable to accept Diners Club, American Express or Westpac Corporate cards.

  • Up to two trees (includes your arborist report): $350.00
  • Three or more trees (applicant to supply arborist report with application): $300.00

Proceed to apply

If you are ready to submit your application, you can Apply online to continue.