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
    Author(s): E. Gregory McPhersonNatalie S. van Doorn; Paula J.  Peper
    Date: 2016
    Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-253. Albany, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. 86 p.
    Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
    Station: Pacific Southwest Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (10.0 MB)


    Information on urban tree growth underpins models used to calculate the effects of trees on the environment and human well-being. Maximum tree size and other growth data are used by urban forest managers, landscape architects, and planners to select trees most suitable to the amount of growing space, thereby reducing costly future conflicts between trees and infrastructure. Growth data are used to examine relationships between growth and influencing factors such as site conditions and stewardship practices. Despite the importance of tree growth data to the science and practice of urban forestry, our knowledge in this area is scant. Over a period of 14 years, scientists with the U.S. Forest Service Pacific Southwest Research Station recorded data from a consistent set of measurements on over 14,000 trees in 17 U.S. cities. Key information collected for each tree species includes bole and crown size, location, and age. From this Urban Tree Database, 365 sets of tree growth equations were developed for the 171 distinct species. Appendices contain field data collection protocols, foliar biomass data that are fundamental to calculating leaf area, tree biomass equations for carbon storage estimates, and a user guide that illustrates application of the equations to calculate carbon stored over many years for tree species that were measured in multiple cities. An online database at includes the raw data, growth equations, coefficients, and application information for each species' volume and dry-weight-biomass equations for urban and rural forest trees; and an expanded list of biomass density factors for common urban tree species.

    Publication Notes

    • You may send email to to request a hard copy of this publication.
    • (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
    • 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.


    McPherson, E. Gregory; van Doorn, Natalie S.; Peper, Paula J. 2016. Urban tree database and allometric equations. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-253. Albany, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. 86 p.


    Google Scholar


    allometry, growth models, predictive equations, tree growth, urban trees

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page