Yes, but under certain conditions

Under what conditions?

Tree maybe be removed without council permit if;

Under 5 metres in height.

  • That the tree(s) is declared a ‘high risk’ or is an imminent danger to life and property
  • Dead trees
  • The pruning or removal of hedges “Hedge” means groups of two or more trees that:
    – are planted (whether in the ground or otherwise) so as to form a hedge, and
    – rise to a height of at least 2.5 metres (above existing ground level).
tree removal Maitland council man on a tall tree

Exempt trees

There are trees that can be removed no matter what their size or condition as they are considered a pest by your local council.

The above-listed conditions do not apply.

See table below

Species Name

Acacia baileyana
Acacia saligna
Acer negundo
Alianthus altissima
All Ficus spp. (except F macrophylla. F.rubiginosa, F. coronata

Alnus jorullensis
Araucaria bidwillii Not Norfolk Island Pines

Brachychiton acerifolius
Cassia spp
Castanospermum australe
Celtis australis
Cinnamomum camphora
Citharexylum spinosum
Cotoneaster glauophyllus
Cupaniopsis laurina
Cupressus spp. Cupressocyparis spp. Chamaecyparis spp.

Eriobotrya japonica, Carica papaya, Citrus spp. Fortunella spp. Malus spp.

Morus spp. Persea spp. Prunus spp.
Erythrina spp.
Eucalyptus nicholi
Eucalyptus scoparia
Fraxinus griffithii
Gleditsia triacanthos
Grevillea robusta
Harpephyllum caffrum
Jacaranda mimosifolia
Lagunaria patersonia
Ligustrum spp.
Liquidambar styracifflua
Nerirum oleander
Olea spp.

Palms other than Livistona australis

Paraserianthes lophantha
Pinus spp.
Pittosporum spp.(up to 8m)
Populus spp.
Pyracantha angustifolia
Raphiolepis indica
Robinia pseudoacacia
Salix spp.
Sapium sebiferum
Schefflera actinophylla
Spathodea campanulata
Syagrus (Arecastrum) romanzoffiana
Ulmus parvifolia

Common Name

Cootamundra Wattle
Golden Wreath (or Willow) Wattle
Box Elder
Tree of Heaven
All Ficus spp. (except Moreton Bay Fig. Port Jackson Fig, SandpaperFig

Evergreen Alder
Bunya Bunya Pine

Illawarra Flame Tree
Black Bean, Moreton Bay Chestnut
Camphor laurel
Cypress Pine

All non-native fruit producing trees (Loquat, Paw Paw, Citrus, Kumquat, Apple, Mulberry, Avocado, Apricot, Almond, Cherry, Plum, Peach, Mango

Coral Tree
Peppermint Gum
Wallangarra White Gum
Himalayan Ash / Griffiths Ash
Honey Locust
Silky Oak
Kaffir Plum
Crepe Myrtle
Norfolk Island Hibiscus
Large and Small leaf Privet

Palms other than Cabbage Tree Palm

Crested Wattle
Orange Fire Thorn
Indian Hawthorn
False Acacia
Chinese Tallow
Umbrella Tree
African Tulip Tree
Cocos Palm
Chinese Elm

Does my council have an exempt tree list?

Please refer to the PDF here: for a full list of trees that can be removed without approval.

Illegal Damaging of Trees

Any type of illegal damaging of trees such as poisoning, cutting, ringbarking, pruning or removal of trees is considered a very serious offence.

As a result, the Land Environment Court will fine you up to $1.1 million. In case the offence continues, the daily fee will apply.

In some cases, the court may require you to plant new trees or vegetation and take care of it until maturity.

tree removal Manly council cutting tree

Reporting Illegal Vandalism of Public Trees

The Council encourages people to report any illegal vandalism of public trees which include removal, cutting, poisoning, pruning or ringbarking.

The council also promises up to $10,000 reward for any information that can lead to the successful prosecution of an offender.

How to apply for a tree removal permit

Go to the above online form and fill it out to make a formal request for tree removal approval.

Manly Council contact details

Phone: 1300434434

Mailing Address: PO Box 82 Manly NSW 1655


Manly Tree Preservation order - TPO

The above is a summary of your local Councils tree preservation order.

Please follow the link for the full document.

Author: Ben McInerney is a qualified arborist with over 15 years of industry experience. He uses his in-depth knowledge of the tree service industry to give readers to most accurate information on tree service costs and helps to educate them about the benefits of using a certified arborist for tree trimming and removal work.