Rochester Citizen Pruner

Upcoming Citizen Pruning Training

Looking to get involved as a Citizen Pruner for the City of Rochester?


In 2021, there will be a spring training to get volunteers out in their community pruning. All training details and information are available below:

General Details: This year's training will be a hybrid of Zoom and social distanced field training. You will receive access to the Zoom invitation once you have registered as well as in an email reminder the Monday prior to training. The field sessions will be limited to 5 individuals to ensure everyone's safety and you will only select one session when registering.

Fee: $25 per person


  • May 14th, 2021 from 3:00pm to 4:30pm - Zoom presentation
  • May 15th, 2021 from 8:30am to 11:30pm (Field Session 1) and 1:30pm to 4:30pm (Field Session 2)

Field Session Location: Silver Lake Park (840 7th Street NE, Rochester, MN 55906


Materials: You will be provided a digital version of the Citizen Pruner training manual one week prior to training.

Competency Assessment: After the Zoom and field training sessions, we do require that each volunteer complete a competency assessment. This will be available digitally and it is an open-book assessment. After you have successfully passed the assessment, you will receive a certificate of completion and a volunteer ID card for use in the field.

Safety Notes: 

  • We do require that every participant wears a mask and maintains 6 feet of distancing during the field session.
  • Training staff will provide hand sanitizer and we encourage you use it as frequently as needed.
  • If you are feeling sick or under the weather, have tested positive for COVID, or suspect you may have been exposed leading up to training, please notify our team as we will happily provide a refund.

If you have any questions or concerns, please email  [email protected] or [email protected] and we will be happy to help!


Thank you for your interest and we look forward to sharing upcoming opportunities in Rochester!

New Field Form!

Attention Citizen Pruners of Rochester! There is a new Field Form (PDF)  to use when pruning in your community. The new Field Form is meant to reflect the changes in data collection that the University of Minnesota is asking volunteers to report. Lucky for you, it consists of mainly checking boxes and providing a few details on who participated and when you were out pruning. Just don't forget to log your pruning data as a group and to have one group member report that information via the online reporting form or by scanning the original copies to [email protected]. If you have any questions regarding this change, do not hesitate to check in with the Volunteer Programs Coordinator.


Pruning Events

Currently, there are no pruning events scheduled at this time. If you are interested in completing some field work independently, please contact the Rochester Forestry Department at [email protected].


Citizen Pruner Resources

Hopefully, everyone who attended training still has their Citizen Pruner Manual (PDF) . If not, it is attached in case you need another look or have misplaced yours.


The City of Rochester, Minnesota is partnering with the University of Minnesota Forest Resources Department on the Citizen Pruners pilot program. Rochester was the first community to adopt this pilot program in 2013 and it has been growing ever since. Citizen Pruners are trained in tree identification, biology, and pruning techniques.Tree pruning requires not only and understand of how to prune but also an understanding of the tree's biology to prevent the spread of certain diseases. If you enjoy being outdoors, love trees and your community, this is an opportunity for you to get involved in your urban forest. Course material will be taught by University of Minnesota Forest Resources Department staff alongside the City of Rochester.

Citizen Pruners are responsible for submitting 10 volunteer hours a year and recertifying every 3 years.