New Residential Subdivisions

Policies and Procedures for Minimum Residential Requirements Front Yard Landscape and Irrigation Package

A. Code Authority

The City Development Code under Chapter 19.28.010, Purpose of Landscape Standards states: "The purpose of this Chapter is to establish landscaping regulations that are intended to:"

  1. Enhance the aesthetic appearance of development in all areas of the City of providing standards relating to quality, quantity and functional aspects of landscaping and landscape screening.

  2. Increase compatibility between residential and abutting commercial and industrial land issues.

Additionally, the Code states........All residential subdivisions shall be provided with trees, shrubs and ground cover of a type and quality generally consistent or compatible with that characterizing single-family homes in the front yard and that portion of the side yards which are visible from the street. All landscaped areas shall be provided with an automatic irrigation system to insure their viability. The landscape and irrigation plans shall be approved by the Parks and Recreation, Planning and Building Services and Public Works Departments.

It is the responsibility of the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department to conduct required inspections prior to the issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy (C of O).

B. Irrigation System: (Per Front Yard)

  1. Automatic Irrigation Controller (unit must be able to have enough stations for future hook up of possible back yard irrigation)

  2. Electric Valves with anti-siphon devices (12" inches above highest head)

  3. Pop-up Type Irrigation Head (turf and shrub areas). Heads with risers shall not be permitted.

  4. All irrigation lines under concrete or asphalt shall be sleeved with Schedule 40 pipe 2 1/2 times the diameter of the lateral or main line.

  5. All irrigation lines shall be installed at least 12" deep.

C. Landscape: (Per Front Yard)

  1. Minimum 1 - 15 gallon tree (double-staked - four (4) cinch ties or other approved tie)

  2. All street trees shall be minimum 24 inch box specimen at 35 feet on-center spacing or as deemed applicable by the Director of Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department or the designee.

D. Turf: Drought tolerant type species. Sod or hydro-seeded.

E. Shrub and Planter Area

  1. 60% - 1 gallon shrubs

  2. 40% - 5 gallon shrubs

Shrubs shall be planted no further apart than five (5) feet.
Groundcover in planter areas - 100% coverage within one (1) year.

  1. Mow Curb: Polyethylene Bed Divider or Concrete Mow Strip to separate all turf and planter areas. Type of materials allowed: 6" concrete mow strips, concrete curb maker, Black Diamond (or equal)/polyethylene bed divider.

F. Erosion Control

All grading and drainage facilities, including erosion control planting of graded slopes, shall be done in accordance with grading plan approved by the City Engineer. A grading permit shall be obtained prior to any grading being done.

G. Inspections


  1. Inspections shall be performed by a Parks and Recreation Department representative at the following:

a. Depth of irrigation trenching, sleeving, mainline, lateral lines (prior to burial), valve installation and irrigation head assembly.
b. Coverage test and final acceptance.

  1. Do not allow or cause the above items to be buried prior to inspection and approval of the Parks Department representative. A 24-hour notice shall be given to anticipated inspections. Contact the Landscape Section at (909) 384-5217 or 384-5314.


  1. Inspections shall be performed by a Parks and Recreation Department representative at the following:

a. Upon completion of finished grade, soil preparation and final rake out.
b. When trees and shrubs are spotted for planting, with one example of planting hole for trees and shrubs. Provide samples of plant fertilizer.
c. Final inspection when planting and all other specified work has been completed.

  1. A 24-hour notice shall be given prior to anticipated inspections. Contact the Landscape Section at (909) 384-5217.

H. Other Requirements

  1. Notify the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department of commencement of landscaping. Give anticipated time line (start-to-finish).

  2. All landscaping, irrigation and street trees shall be installed and maintained in accordance with the City of San Bernardino Municipal Codes, Ordinances and standard requirements.

  3. Material requirements for all planting material shall be number one (#) grade of the California Nursery Industry Certificate as issued by the Agricultural Commissioner of the County of origin.

  4. Unless the residential property is sold in under ninety (90) days, the contractor shall be responsible for ninety (90) day plant establishment and maintenance period after all inspections have been completed. If landscape is not acceptable, maintenance period will be extended 30, 60 or 90 days or as determined by the Park Projects Coordinator.

  5. All landscaped material, irrigation equipment, irrigation components and workmanship shall be guaranteed for a period of not less than one (1) year from date of final approval by the City of San Bernardino Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department's Director or his/her designee. The conditions of the guarantee will be to insure, but not limited to all plant material being in healthy condition and free from abnormal conditions which may have occurred during or after planting, such as defoliation or structure dieback.

I. Assessment Districts

Contact the City of San Bernardino Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department for Assessment District's Landscape Requirements. All other items on Assessment Districts are covered by Public Works/Engineering.