Horticulture and Grounds 

Council Bluffs Parks and Recreation's Horticulture and Grounds Division is responsible for the care and maintenance of our trees, shrubs, perennial and annual plantings throughout the City. We are dedicated to creating beautiful places that add to the quality of life in Council Bluffs.  

Have a question about the planting you see, or would you like to recommend we add planting to a location within a park? Let us know here:

Horticulture and Grounds Communication Form

Tom Hanafan River's Edge Flower Bed

Tree Programs

Council Bluffs is recognized as a Tree City USA. Tree City USA is greening communities across the country. This program is a great opportunity to celebrate the importance of an urban tree canopy and improve the care of these vital city trees. Parks and Recreation encourages and assists residents with planting trees within neighborhoods and along streets. You can report a tree problem, or inquire about planting trees on the public right-of-way by calling the Parks and Recreation Department. 

Emerald Ash Borer

The City has over 1,260 ash trees.  The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is a highly destructive, wood-boring insect that destroys ash trees. Without intervention, the City is at risk of losing a significant portion of its ash trees to EAB.  Several years ago, a treatment plan was prepared and by following this plan, we anticipate close to 97% of our ash trees being treated. 

Heart of the City

The Heart of the City program is a free tree planting program that is partnership with Council Bluffs Trees Forever Organization. The program is generally funded by local utility grants or other grants associated with providing trees to save energy and beautify our neighborhoods. The program provides residents an opportunity to have a free tree, from a pre-selected list of trees, planted in their front yard area. For more information call 712-890-5291 or visit the CB Trees Forever on Facebook

Plant Some Shade 

Pottawattamie County residents are eligible to purchase trees through the Plant Some Shade program.  This program is a partnership initiative to aid long-term energy and natural resource conservation. The program is administered by the Pottawattamie County Conservation Board, Pottawattamie Conservation Foundation, City of Council Bluffs Parks and Recreation, Council Bluffs Trees Forever, and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources — Bureau of Forestry. This program is offered in the spring of each year.  

Street Trees

Urban Street trees and neighborhood street trees offer an array of benefits to the community.  Street trees offer an aesthetic value and have been proven to serve as a traffic calming measure within residential neighborhoods.  As part of our commitment to having our streets lined with appropriate trees, the Horticulture and Grounds Division staff have prepared a street tree planting guide to help with tree selection. Refer to our related links section below.   

Integrated Pest Management Plan

The City of Council Bluffs has adopted this Integrated Pest Management Plan for the
buildings and grounds that the Parks and Recreation Department manages. The plan outlines
procedures to be followed to protect the health and safety of staff, patients and visitors from pest
and pesticide hazards. The plan is designed to voluntarily comply with policies and regulations
promulgated by the Department of Agriculture for public buildings and health care facilities. IPM Plan