Does Landscaping Require the City of Edmonton Approval in Edmonton?


Landscaping is an essential aspect of property ownership in Edmonton, as it enhances a property’s aesthetics, functionality, and value. However, property owners must know the various regulations and approvals required to ensure that their landscaping projects comply with the City of Edmonton’s guidelines. This article will explore the City’s landscaping regulations and guide when and how to seek approval for landscaping projects.

A professional working in a back yard, installing turf
A professional planning a landscaping project

Understanding Landscaping Regulations in Edmonton

 Landscaping Goals and Benefits

Before delving into the approval process, it’s crucial to understand the goals and benefits of landscaping in Edmonton. Well-designed landscaping can improve curb appeal, create outdoor living spaces, and contribute to environmental sustainability by promoting green spaces and native plant species.

City of Edmonton Regulations

The City of Edmonton has specific regulations and bylaws to ensure that landscaping projects align with the City’s overall development plan. These regulations aim to maintain the City’s natural beauty, protect green spaces, and promote sustainable development.

Zoning and Permits

Zoning regulations are vital in determining what landscaping is permissible on a property. Additionally, specific landscaping projects may require permits to meet safety and environmental standards.

When City Approval is Required for Landscaping

Major Landscaping Projects

Major landscaping projects, such as extensive garden installations or large-scale hardscaping, often require approval from the City of Edmonton. This ensures that the project aligns with zoning guidelines and does not negatively impact the surrounding environment.

Construction Near Protected Areas

Suppose a property is near environmentally sensitive areas, water bodies, or protected lands. In that case, the City may require approval to ensure that the landscaping does not disturb or harm these areas.

Tree Removal and Planting

The City of Edmonton places importance on preserving and maintaining trees. Therefore, any significant tree removal or planting of new trees may require approval to assess the impact on the local ecosystem.

Fencing and Retaining Walls

Installing large fences or retaining walls may require approval to ensure they adhere to safety standards and do not obstruct public pathways or views.

The Application Process

Preparing the Application

When seeking approval for a landscaping project, applicants must prepare a detailed plan that outlines the proposed changes. This plan should include landscaping designs, materials, and any necessary assessments, such as environmental impact studies.

Submitting the Application

Once the application is complete, it must be submitted to the City of Edmonton’s relevant department along with any required fees.

Review and Approval Timeframe

The City will review the application to ensure it complies with all regulations. The approval timeframe can vary depending on the project’s complexity, but the City strives to process applications as efficiently as possible.

Common Landscaping Guidelines & Restrictions

Plant Species Selection

The City encourages using native plant species well-suited to the local climate. This helps promote biodiversity and reduces the need for excessive irrigation.

Water Usage Restrictions

In a region with occasional water scarcity, landscaping projects must adhere to water usage restrictions and adopt water-efficient practices.

Noise and Dust Control

During landscaping construction, measures should be taken to minimize noise and dust affecting neighbouring properties.

Consequences of Non-Compliance

Fines and Penalties

Failure to obtain the necessary approval for a landscaping project can result in fines or penalties the City imposes.

Corrective Measures

In some cases, the City may require property owners to undo changes made without proper approval.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is a permit required for small landscaping changes?

Even small landscaping changes may require a permit if they involve certain activities like tree removal or construction near protected areas.

How long does it take to get approval from the City?

The approval timeframe can vary, but the City aims to process applications within a reasonable time frame.

Can I appeal a landscaping decision?

Yes, property owners can appeal a landscaping decision if they believe it is unjust or incorrect.

What happens if I don’t obtain the necessary approval?

Failure to obtain approval may result in fines, penalties, or being required to reverse the changes.

Can I hire a professional to handle the approval process for me?

Yes, many landscaping professionals are familiar with the approval process and can assist in preparing and submitting the application.


Landscaping can significantly enhance the beauty and functionality of properties in Edmonton. However, to ensure compliance with City regulations and avoid potential penalties, property owners must familiarize themselves with the approval process for landscaping projects. Seeking approval from the City of Edmonton when necessary helps protect the environment and contributes to a well-planned and sustainable community.

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