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Urban tree monitoring: a resource guide

Formally Refereed
Authors: Natalie S. van Doorn, Lara A. Roman, E. Gregory McPherson, Bryant C. Scharenbroch, Jason G. Henning, Johan P.A. Östberg, Lee S. Mueller, Andrew K. Koeser, John R. Mills, Richard A. Hallet, John E. Sanders, John Battles, Debra J. Boyer, Jason P. Fristensky, Sarah K. Mincey, Paula J. Peper, Jessica M. Vogt
Year: 2020
Type: General Technical Report (GTR)
Station: Pacific Southwest Research Station
Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-266. Albany, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. 132 p.


The guidelines proposed in Urban Tree Monitoring: A Resource Guide (hereafter referred to as the Resource Guide) were developed and refined over many years to address the need for standardized urban tree monitoring protocols. The Resource Guide provides in-depth guidance for urban forest managers and researchers who want to design and implement a tree monitoring project. This Resource Guide is a companion to Urban Tree Monitoring: A Field Guide; however, the Resource Guide can also be used on its own. The Resource Guide is divided into three parts. In Part I, we discuss (1) the varied goals of monitoring projects and how to match data collection to those goals, (2) the development of these urban tree monitoring standards, (3) types of monitoring projects, and (4) connections to other protocols for urban tree data collection. We offer guidance on methods for recording tree location, developing tree record identifiers, organizing spreadsheets and databases, choosing data collection systems, fostering research-practice partnerships, training crews, and managing fieldwork. In Part II, we present five monitoring data sets: Minimum Data Set, Tree Data Set, Site Data Set, Young Tree Management Data Set, and Community Data Set. We list study goals that could be addressed with each data set and descriptions of relevant variables. We also provide guidance regarding which variables are best suited for beginner and advanced crews. Lastly, in Part III we include appendices with additional resources for designing and implementing tree monitoring projects.


tree monitoring, monitoring standards, data collection


van Doorn, Natalie S.; Roman, Lara A.; McPherson, E. Gregory; Scharenbroch, Bryant C.; Henning, Jason G.; stberg, Johan P.A.; Mueller, Lee S.; Koeser, Andrew K.; Mills, John R.; Hallet, Richard A.; Sanders, John E.; Battles, John J; Boyer, Debra J.; Fristensky, Jason P.; Mincey, Sarah K.; Peper, Paula J.; Vogt, Jessica M. 2020. Urban tree monitoring: a resource guide. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-266. Albany, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. 132 p.