Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub

    Description

    We analyzed the relationship between crime and indicators of residential yard management in Baltimore City and County. Data came from a survey we conducted of over one thousand front yards that included more than 40 indicators relating to lawns, trees, shrubs, beds and other features. These indicators were related to point counts of crime at the 150 m scale using a combination of ordinary least squares, spatial error, and Poisson regressions. After controlling for income, population density, block-scale tree canopy, and housing type, we found a consistently significant relationship between crime and a number of indicators of yard management. Yard-level variables that were negatively associated with crime included: the presence of yard trees, garden hoses/sprinklers, and lawns, in addition to the percentage of pervious area in a yard. Those positively associated with crime included presence of litter, desiccation of the lawn, lack of cutting of the lawn, and number of small trees in front of or adjacent to the property. While these results do not establish causality, they add evidence to a growing literature that suggests the possibility of several mechanisms by which environmental design may reduce crime: "cues to care" (the inverse of the "broken window" hypothesis) can lead to reduced crime by signaling to criminals the presence of social capital and the active involvement of neighbors in community spaces; and more appealing landscaping draws more "eyes on the street," which in turn deters criminals.

    Publication Notes

    • Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
    • Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
    • During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
    • Please contact Sharon Hobrla, shobrla@fs.fed.us if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

    Citation

    Troy, Austin; Nunery, Ashley; Grove, J. Morgan. 2016. The relationship between residential yard management and neighborhood crime: An analysis from Baltimore City and County. Landscape and Urban Planning. 147: 78-87.

    Cited

    Google Scholar

    Keywords

    Crime, Environmental design, Residential landscaping, Yards, Spatial analysiS

    Related Search


    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page
https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/50236