Plant a tree FAQs

Beech trees

Here are the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about planting a tree for yourself, as a gift or in memory of a loved one. However, if there’s anything else you’d like to know, please get in touch by emailing us at giving@nationaltrust.org.uk. We’d be happy to help.

Index:

1. What’s the plant a tree scheme?
2. Why are you raising money to plant trees?
3. Where are the trees being planted?
4. What tree species are being planted?
5. How many trees have been planted so far?
6. Why is there a £5 minimum suggested donation?
7. Why can’t I choose a tree planting location?
8. Why can’t I ‘tag’ a tree?
9. My company would like to help plant trees, what’s the best way for businesses to donate?
10. When will I receive my digital certificate?
11. What information will be included on my digital certificate?
12. How can I change the information on my digital certificate?
13. Why haven’t I received my digital certificate?
14. How do I know if my dedication has been completed successfully?
15. I’ve changed my mind. Can I get a refund?
16. I’d like to make a complaint about your ‘no-refund’ procedure – how do I do that?
17. Why haven’t I received my confirmation email?

1. What’s the plant a tree scheme?

In 2020, we launched our ambition to plant and establish 20 million trees by 2030. The plant a tree scheme provides the opportunity for you to help us deliver on this ambition by donating to our tree planting fund. Donations can be made for yourself, or with a dedication in memory or in celebration of a loved one.

2. Why are you raising money to plant trees?

The National Trust has always been here for the benefit of everyone. As Europe’s biggest conservation charity, we have a responsibility to do everything we can to fight climate change, which poses the biggest threat to the places, nature and collections we care for. 

People need nature now more than ever. And working together is the only way we can reverse the decline in wildlife and the challenges we face due to climate change.

3. Where are the trees being planted?

We plant trees according to the areas most in need, as identified by our Head of Trees and Woodland and regional countryside teams. Trees are planted between November and March, and this past winter we planted trees across two properties – Sherborne Park in Gloucestershire and Kingston Lacy in Dorset. We're yet to finalise our planting locations for winter 2021/22, but please do keep checking our website where we hope to provide further updates.

4. What tree species are being planted?

Species are chosen to be appropriate for the property where they will be planted and where they can benefit a wide variety of native wildlife. Over winter 2020/21 we planted a mix of deciduous tree and shrub species including blackthorn, hawthorn, spindle, hazel, holly, oak, beech, dog rose, sweet chestnut and crab apple. We're still finalising our planting for winter 2021/22 and the species mix may be different at these properties.

5. How many trees have been planted so far? 

The best time to plant trees is November through to March. Thanks to thousands of supporters who have chosen to plant a tree with us, 14,500 new tree saplings were planted over the 2020 winter period. Thousands more will be planted this winter. We're yet to finalise our planting numbers and locations for winter 2021/22, but please do keep checking our website where we hope to provide further updates.

6. Why is there a £5 minimum suggested donation? 

Our suggested minimum donation amount is £5 as this is what it costs us to plant one new sapling. No matter what the size of your gift, your donation to our plant a tree fund will help create green spaces for people and wildlife to thrive. As the digital certificate references that you have planted a tree, we do not offer this for donations of less than £5.

7. Why can’t I choose a tree planting location?

All donations go into our tree planting fund, and we plant trees according to the areas in most need as identified by our woodland experts and regional countryside teams. Trees are planted throughout winter and our planning process means we may not know until the summer where the trees will be planted each year. We aim to regularly update our communications on tree planting locations that have been made possible with your support. Please get in touch by emailing us at giving@nationaltrust.org.uk if you’d like to know more.

8. Why can’t I ‘tag’ a tree?

Your donation to our tree planting fund brings us closer to our ambition of planting and establishing 20 million trees by 2030. Due to the scale of tree planting required we’re not able to match dedications to specific trees or to ‘tag’ trees with memorial plaques, which is why we have created the digital certificate that can be shared with your loved ones.

9. My company would like to help plant trees, what’s the best way for businesses to donate? 

We ask for businesses to donate either by cheque or BACS, and get in touch to notify the business name to be included on your digital certificate. Please note that we can only offer one digital certificate per business donation and not multiple certificates for individual staff members.

It's easy to make a donation either by sending a cheque to our central office or by BACS transfer, please contact us by calling 0344 800 1895 or emailing giving@nationaltrust.org.uk for details.

10. When will I receive my digital certificate?

We aim to send all digital certificates within five working days of your donation being made. While we hope your digital certificate will be created and sent within a shorter timeframe, during busy periods our team may need a little longer to ensure they give each digital certificate the time and attention they deserve. Please bear with us while we work through them.

11. What information will be included in my digital certificate?

Your digital certificate will include the unique details relating to your dedication and the number of trees you will have planted, whether in memory or in celebration. You can see a sample digital certificate below. Please note, as the digital certificate references that you have planted a tree we do not offer this for donations of less than £5, and we will not prepare or send certificates containing content deemed to be inappropriate or offensive.

Plant a tree digital certificate example
Plant a tree digital certificate example
Plant a tree digital certificate example

12. How can I change the information on my digital certificate?

We understand the donation process doesn’t provide the opportunity to preview your digital certificate before you make your donation, and we’re happy to make small edits to your digital certificate if required. If you would like to make any changes to your digital certificate please get in touch with us by emailing us at giving@nationaltrust.org.uk

13. Why haven’t I received my digital certificate?

Digital certificates are individually personalised and sent by email within 5 working days. We're aware that occasionally they go into ‘junk’ mail, please check and get in touch if you haven’t received your certificate by calling 0344 800 1895, or by emailing giving@nationaltrust.org.uk.

14. How do I know if my dedication has been completed successfully?

The last stage of the dedication process is making your donation, which is triggered once you have entered your personal and payment details and clicked ‘Yes, I confirm my payment’. If your donation has been successful there will be a message at the top of the page saying 'Thank you'. You should also receive a confirmation email within 20 minutes of completing your dedication, and your digital certificate will be sent in a separate email within five working days. If you don’t think your donation has been successful, please get in touch by calling 0344 800 1895.

15. I’ve changed my mind. Can I get a refund? 

We do not process refunds on donations, but we will work hard to ensure you have all the information you need before making a dedication. Donations will only be refunded in very limited circumstances, in accordance with the Institute of Fundraising guidelines.

16. I’d like to make a complaint about your ‘no-refund’ procedure – how do I do that?

You can make a complaint via our Supporter Service Centre, either over the phone by calling 0344 800 1895, or by emailing us at giving@nationaltrust.org.uk. Find out more about the National Trust's complaints procedure.

17. Why haven’t I received my confirmation email? 

You should receive your confirmation email within 20 minutes of donating. If after this time you haven’t received the email please check your junk folder. If you’re still having difficulty, please get in touch by calling 0344 800 1895.