planting for the future


To enhance urban and rural landscapes in the UK through collaboration with partners to plan and deliver successful tree plantingand establishment.

Trees are vital. For climate resilience, for flood mitigation, for wildlife habitat, carbon storage, mental wellbeing, aesthetic beauty, soil erosion prevention, shade... their role as a fundamental part of our landscapes cannot be overstated.

Trees are also under pressure. From rapid urbanisation, a changing climate and biosecurity threats.

VITAL exists to provide expert advice on establishing new trees so that healthy, vibrant and resilient treescapes will thrive, in order to promote the flourishing of the people around them.

VITAL aims to reduce the all too common occurrence of dead young trees, by getting tree planting and establishment right the first time.

Who we are

We are passionate and experienced arboriculturists and urban foresters, envisioned to see tree planting and establishment carried out to the highest standard.

VITAL is a collaboration between Richard Hyett, Keith Sacre and Paul Barton.

With a combined experience of over 70 years in growing, planting, and managing trees, we are able to provide clients with the best advice to ensure their investment in the trees of the future provides the optimum return.

Richard Hyett

MSc, BSc (Hons), MICFor, MArborA
Chartered Arboriculturist

Richard’s experience as a principal tree officer and arboricultural consultant gives him excellent insight across a broad range of tree-related projects. Like all good tree-people, he started his trade at the practical level, pruning and planting trees. He works with many large developers and local authorities to deliver high-quality developments which incorporate both mature and newly planted trees.

Keith Sacre

MSc, BSc, MICFor
Chartered Arboriculturist

Keith is a pioneering urban forester, with decades of experience in cultivating high-quality trees for planting in the UK landscape.  His knowledge of tree nursery practices and urban tree planting is extensive, and his practical and pragmatic approach means he approaches all projects with an analytic perspective.  Keith was one of the authors of British Standard BS8545 ‘Trees: from nursery to independence in the landscape - recommendations'.  He is a trustee of the Arboricultural Association and Trees and Design Action Group (TDAG).

Paul Barton

MSc, BSc (Hons), MArborA
Registered Consultant of the Arboricultural Association

Paul is one of a small number of Arboricultural Association Registered Consultants within the UK. He understands the need to deliver successful tree planting to ensure the true benefits of trees are realised on both a local and global scale. His experience gained over the last 15 years within arboriculture and urban forestry ensures that he provides a creative and bespoke approach to tree planting to meet the needs of both clients and site conditions.

What we do

VITAL is a tree planting and establishment consultancy. We provide bespoke, site specific advice and project management for tree planting initiatives.

Tell you if your aspirations are feasible.

Help you identify the most desired outcomes of your project.

Assess the site - soil, topography, exposure, underground services, local character.

Provide a clear and easy to interpret tree planting plan.

Help you choose the most suitable tree species.

Visit tree growers to handpick the best quality specimens.

Oversee the import of trees from the nursery.

Manage contractors to prepare the site for planting.

Manage or carry out tree planting.

Provide tree care and maintenance until trees are ‘independent’ in the landscape.

Monitor the health of young trees to ensure minimal failures.