Memorial Tree Program

The Memorial Tree Program is a way for members of the community or visitors to memorialize and honor the memory of a friend or loved one within the City of Spearfish park system.   There are no eligibility requirements for participation.

The new program has been developed and provides a living tribute to benefit present, and future generations.


A list of approved Planting Locations will be provided by Spearfish Parks and Recreation.  Site-specific considerations include proximity to permanent structures, appropriate distance from overhead powerlines and underground utilities, lines of sight, future development plans, park usage, soil type, etc.

Species/Size requirements

A list of approved Memorial Tree species will be provided by Spearfish Parks and Recreation.  The approved Memorial Tree species list is subject to change and is based on a variety of factors including hardiness (Zone 5a, 4a, 4b, or less), reliability of available stock maintaining species diversity in the urban canopy.  Due to the threat of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), no ash species (Fraxinus) will be permitted.  The trees selected will be no less than 1.5” caliper as measured 6” above the root flare and will be of nursery-grade stock.

Planting seasons

Memorial Trees will be planted in either spring or fall.  The Participant(s) must contact Spearfish Parks and Recreation prior to April 1 for a spring planting and prior to September 1 for a fall planting.

Spring planting season: Mid-April – early June  

Fall planting season: Mid-September – early November

Care and maintenance

Spearfish Parks and Recreation will care for and maintain the Memorial Tree as it would any other tree planted in the park system.  This includes regular watering on an “as needed” basis, mulching, staking, caging, pruning, and weeding around the planting site.  Memorial Trees will be guaranteed for 1 (one) year from the date of planting and will be replaced at no cost to the participant with a similar tree, should the tree fail to establish.


There is a one-time participation fee of $600.00 for the Memorial Tree program for the year 2020.  The participation fee will be determined annually by the Finance Department.   The participation fee covers the cost of the tree, labor, materials, and equipment required for planting, a Memorial Tree Plaque (optional), recognition on the City of Spearfish Tree Inventory (optional), and a Certificate of Participation.


A personalized “leaf” will be added to the Memorial Tree Plaque (optional), the tree will be identified as a Memorial Tree on the City of Spearfish Tree Inventory (optional), and a Certificate of Participation will be given to the Participant(s).

Contact Us

For more information, please contact the PRF Superintendent at (605) 717-1142 or visit 

Click here for an application and more information

  1. Rex McDonald

    Parks, Recreation & Forestry Superintendent

  2. Barb Heiting

    Administrative Assistant

Arbor Day 2019