Tree planting

We’re working hard to increase tree coverage.

We are currently in the process of creating our first tree planting strategy, for the next five years, look here for more information soon.

We also want to work with local landowners willing to give some of their land back to nature so help us meet our targets.

Using data about our current tree coverage, we can identify where we can increase numbers of trees and hedgerow plants, to ensure we best target our tree planting efforts over coming years.

Our tree coverage survey

Our first step was to work with Treeconomics Ltd, to carry out a districts-wide survey of trees in our patch (known as our tree canopy).

This has enabled us to not only understand and measure our existing tree coverage down to ward level, but has also identified where tree coverage can be increased.

It means we can now also quantify some of the environmental benefits provided by trees in Babergh and Mid Suffolk, including:

  • how much carbon they store (carbon storage) and remove from the atmosphere (carbon sequestration)
  • how much rainwater they drain away (avoided runoff)
  • how many pollutants from the air (pollution removal)

Using the survey data

On Monday 5 September 2022, both Babergh and Mid Suffolk cabinets agreed to make the survey data public. This is to assist town and parish councils, community groups, landowners, planners, developers, as well as others, in supporting and improving biodiversity locally.

To data from the survey can be viewed via online maps, to make it easier visualise by ward level.

Discover more about the benefits of our trees and view online maps

We have also included a snapshot of the headline data for the whole district below:

Headline figures for Babergh's tree canopy cover
Description Amount Value
Average tree canopy cover 10.4%
Carbon storage (t) 612,000 £157,000,000
Annual carbon sequestration (t)
Annual pollution removal (t) 1,100 £20,523,000
Annual avoided runoff (m3) 2,337,000 £3,658,000
Total annual benefits £30,441,000


Headline figures for Mid Suffolk's tree canopy cover
Description Amount Value
Average tree canopy cover 8.5%
Carbon storage (t)
Annual carbon sequestration (t) 29,000 £7,417,000
Annual pollution removal (t) 1,310 £21,831,000
Annual avoided runoff (m3) 2,513,000 £3,934,000
Total annual benefits £33,182,000


Alternatively: download the full survey report

Tree planting strategy

We are now working our way through the data from the survey to create our first tree planting strategy.

Look out here for more information soon.

Giving your land back to nature – how landowners can help

We are planting trees and changing the way we manage open spaces on the land we own.

We are also working with organisations such as Suffolk Wildlife Trust and the Woodland Trust to help provide our communities with advice, support and funding.

However, to make a bigger difference and increase tree coverage across the district to where it needs to be, we also need to work with other landowners and organisations like you, to create more space for our wildlife.

Do you have land – big or small - that you could give back to nature to support local plant and wildlife, but not sure where to start?

Simply register your interest with us so we can find out a bit more about you, your land, and your ideas.

Ways you could give back some land to nature could include:

  • Planting more trees, hedgerow and or woodland
  • Creating or improving meadows, ponds, or another habitat
  • Changing the way you manage your land

Ways we can support you can include:

  • Providing information about available grants and support
  • Giving advice about what sort of planting may be most suitable for your land space and use
  • Bringing together multiple landowners in an area so they can work better collectively for nature

Questions? Get in touch with our biodiversity team