Cutting Trees Down

Q: I have a large backyard with a creek that merges into the Chattahoochee. It is full of large and small trees. I would like to cut down all the trees to make it usable for my daughters. Can I cut them down?

A: I hope you will reconsider cutting down all of the trees. Even though you own your property, Fulton County and the State of Georgia have environmental regulations that affect homeowners removing trees. In the first place, Fulton County has a tree ordinance regulating what you can and can not cut, covering any tree larger than two inches in diameter. To protect the quality of water in the Chattahoochee, Fulton County and the State of Georgia require you to leave an undisturbed fifty foot buffer zone, measured from the stream bank. With the advice of a landscape architect, I feel sure you can make a nice place for your children, save energy during the summer, and protect the environment without removing all of the trees. Get details on the law at

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