Idaho Power is committed to providing customer programs that promote energy efficiency. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, well-placed shade trees can reduce energy used for summer cooling by about 15% or more by blocking the sun’s rays. In addition to energy savings, shade trees improve air and water quality and increase property values.
Participants must be an active residential customer of Idaho Power at the property where the tree is to be planted and living in one of the counties listed below. Participant must have the legal right to plant tree(s) on the property.
For spring 2023, this project will be open to residential customers living in Bannock, Bingham, Lemhi, Oneida and Power counties.
Note: There is a limit of two trees per address for the life of the program.
- Enroll in the project using the online enrollment tool. Energy Saving Trees, developed by the Arbor Day Foundation, is a web-based tool designed to help you to choose a species of tree and evaluate the best location on your property for that tree. Allow at least 10 minutes to complete the online enrollment. You must pre-register to receive trees.
- Pick up your shade tree(s) at one of two of two designated events. Each event will have planting demonstrations and an opportunity to ask an arborist questions. You must enroll and receive confirmation that your order was approved to receive trees at the events.
- Plant your tree(s). Shade trees work best on the west side of the property.
Trees must be picked up at one of the designated events. You will be asked to select the date/location of pick up during the enrollment process. If you cannot attend the pick-up event you selected, you may send someone in your place. Please call us to make arrangements. Unclaimed trees will not be available after the events.
- Plant on the west side of your home.
- Plant close enough to your home so the mature canopy will provide the shade you need. However, to prevent branches from impacting your home, plant the tree about half the distance of the mature canopy width from your home.
- Ensure trees planted near streets comply with local ordinances, generally about 5 feet from streets and 40 feet from corners.
- Ensure trees will not interfere with overhead or underground utilities. Idaho Power recommends planting shade trees at least 35 feet from any overhead power lines. Learn more about Tree Safety.
- Consider how the tree might affect visibility, shade nearby flower gardens or impact a neighbor’s home.
Approximately 1,000 trees are offered each spring and fall through this demonstration project. Several species will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. The enrollment tool will be monitored during business hours. Should the project fully subscribe after hours, the enrollment tool will not be deactivated until the next business day. If you wish to be notified of the next Shade Tree offering in your area, please send your contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org
You will be responsible for planting the tree or making arrangements for it to be planted. Before your tree arrives, you will be emailed a tree-planting guide, which will provide instructions on how to plant and maintain your new tree. Additionally, a video has been provided at idahopower.com/shadetree to show you how to properly plant your new tree. If you arrange for someone to plant the tree for you, be sure they follow the tree planting guidelines identified for this project.
At least two days before you plan to dig, call Dig Line at 811 or visit digline.com to make sure the selected tree location does not have any underground utility lines.
Plus, in the winter, branches from trees planted on the south side of a home can increase winter heating costs by blocking the sun which hovers low and to the south most of the day.
Before your tree arrives, you will receive planting guides and other information to help you properly plant and care for your tree. Further planting and care are up to you. Some community resources that may be of assistance include the following:
- City urban forestry programs provide classes on tree planting and care.
- The International Society of Arborists and the Arbor Day Foundation have online tree care information.
- Landscaping companies and tree doctors are available for hire to help plant, prune and evaluate tree health. The Idaho Nursery and Landscape Association maintains a list of professionals serving Idaho.