Planting & Trimming Trees

First and foremost, don't plant trees, shrubs or bushes under or near electric lines.

Tiny trees turn into big trees whose branches can touch electric lines. Trees easily conduct electricity, putting tree-climbing, kite-flying children at risk of injury.

When planting trees or shrubs, keep in mind the shape and the size the species will reach at maturity. Select sites that are far enough from rights-of-way to ensure future growth will not interfere with power lines. Below is a diagram showing suggested planting distances for small, medium and large trees.

Planting Chart

Here is a list of some of the trees native to East Texas categorized by height classification.

SMALL: dogwood, redbud, yaupon, crepe myrtle, and various fruit and ornamental trees.

MEDIUM: eastern red cedar, American holly, sassafras, Arizona ash, white ash, catalpa, common persimmon, boxelder, red maple, silver maple, silver poplar and mimosa.

LARGE: pecan, hackberry, green ash, black walnut, sweetgum, tulip poplar, southern magnolia, slash pine, loblolly pine, longleaf pine, shortleaf pine, sycamore, water oak, pin oak, red oak, live oak, weeping willow and American elm.

It's also important to contact Sam Houston EC before you attempt to cut or trim trees near power lines.

And last but not least, before you dig the hole to plant a tree or shrub, call 1-800-DIG-TESS (1-800-344-8377). Any Sam Houston EC member can call to be sure they don’t hit a buried power line