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US Forest Service
Attention: Urban and Community Forestry
201 14th Street SW
Washington, D.C. 20250

(202) 205-1054

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Urban and Community Forestry

Technology Transfer

Regional Technology Transfer Products

Northeastern Area

Baltimore Ecosystem Study

Description: The Baltimore Ecosystem Study (BES) aims to understand metropolitan Baltimore as an ecological system. The program brings together researchers from the biological, physical, and social sciences to collect new data and synthesize existing knowledge on how both the ecological and engineered systems of Baltimore work.

Benefits: As one of only two Long-Term Ecological Research sites located in an urban environment, the Baltimore Ecosystem Study has a special opportunity to both contribute to and examine ecological management and decision-making practices at a range of scales. The general public, students and teachers, and various policy-makers and environmental managers all have a stake in the outcome of such an endeavor. While all ecology educators would assert that understanding the environment has utility, here is the opportunity to test this relationship in a bold and long-term fashion.

Funded by: National Science Foundation, US Forest Service

Location: Baltimore, MD

Partners: National Science Foundation, Long Term Ecological Research Network, US Forest Service, US Geological Service, Parks and People of Baltimore, Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Conservation Planning Atlas (Midwest Version)

Description: The Conservation Planning Atlas (Midwest Version) is compilation of maps produced by various government and non-profit agencies. The purpose of the atlas is to provide a general overview of issues that may have impact on conservation planning. The atlas consists of both national and regional scale maps. Each map includes a description as well as references or internet links for additional information.

Benefits: The goal of the atlas is to encourage a regional scale perspective in all areas of conservation planning efforts. The atlas can provide guidance for prioritizing projects and creating policy change.
Funded by: USFS Rocky Mountain Research Station, and The University of Missouri Center for Agroforestry, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) - Dale Bumpers Small Farms Research Center at Booneville, AR, and US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Location: USDA National Agroforestry Center, Lincoln, NE

Partners: USFS Rocky Mountain Research Station, and The University of Missouri Center for Agroforestry, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) - Dale Bumpers Small Farms Research Center at Booneville, AR, and US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Landscape Change Integrated Program

Description: The Landscape Change Integrated Program combines the efforts of scientists to develop a better understanding of land use and land cover change and to develop knowledge and tools to help people make informed choices about how they use natural resources.

Benefits: The program answers the following questions: How is the landscape changing, what drives landscape change, what are the consequences of landscape change, and what can be done about it?

Funded by: USDA Forest Service

Location: Northern Research Station

Living Memorials Project

Description: Because of the overwhelming desire to honor and memorialize the tragic losses that occurred on September 11, 2001 (9-11) the United States Congress asked the US Forest Service to create the Living Memorials Project (LMP). This initiative invokes the resonating power of trees to bring people together and create lasting, living memorials to the victims of terrorism, their families, communities, and the nation. Living memorials are spaces created, used, or re-appropriated by people as they employ the landscape to memorialize individuals, places, and events. Ranging from single tree plantings, to the creation of new parks, to the rededication of existing forests, hundreds of groups across the country created a vast network of sites that continues to grow. Land-markings: 12 Journeys through 9/11 Living Memorials is a multimedia exhibition that compresses four years of research data and analysis on over 700 living memorials into 12 digitally authored journeys. Social science researchers, urban ecologists, designers, and architects collaborated in order to collect, analyze, and present this dispersed collective response to the tragedy of September 11, 2001.

Benefits: Researchers created a National Registry that serves as an online inventory of hundreds of community-based, living memorial sites. Memorials created from 2001-2004 are displayed on a National Map which will continue to be updated as new site locations are identified, registered and uploaded to the site. Findings from the first years of research as well as a “toolbox” of resources and designs are available. This interpretation presents memorials not only as mechanisms by which events and individuals are marked, but also interprets the function and spatial location of these remembrances, treating them as emergent forms that outline how people interact with public landscapes.

Funded by: US Forest Service

Location: Northeastern Area

Partners: USDA Forest Service, NA S&PF, NRS, Urban Resources Initiative, Urban-Interface, OASIS, Parsons The New School, Tishman Environment and Design Center, and Meristem, Inc.

Northern Trees – Online Selection

Description: This web site helps guide users through the process of tree selection, and provides a list of possible trees in the northeast United States, hardiness zones 2 - 7 (Click here if you live in zones 8 - 11). It is also designed to provide extensive cultural and maintenance information, and many photographs.

Benefits: The Tree Selector website allows users to develop a list of trees based on their soil, site, and plant attributes.

Funded by: US Forest Service

Location: University of Florida

Partners: USDA Forest Service, University of Florida, and Rutgers Cooperative Extension

Trees Pay Us Back

Description: This website lists various important products that supplement the i-Tree program, and help with communicating the benefits of trees including: Minneapolis Municipal Tree Resource Analysis, Assessing Urban Forests Effects and Values, Midwest Tree Guide, Trees in Our City ppt, Human Dimensions of Urban Greening, Conveying the Power of Trees, and Planting the Seeds of Success.

Benefits: All of the products summarize the values that result from planting and caring for trees in urban environments. They also encourage communities to use the i-Tree results as a guide in strategic planting.

Funded by: USDA Forest Service, Northeastern Area

Location: Northeastern Area

Tree Emergency Plan Worksheet

Description: This worksheet outlines the important features that need to be decided and assembled in order to best prepare for a storm. The worksheet is available as a Word or pdf file so users can write or type in responses.

Benefits: Communities that complete the form will be well-prepared to effectively respond to and recover from a storm, minimizing damage and costs.

Funded by: US Forest Service, Northeastern Area

Location: Northeastern Area

Partners: Katie Himanga (Urban Forestry Consultant), Jim Hermann (Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board)

Urban and Community Forestry Appreciation Tool Kit

Description: The tool kit was developed to promote urban and community forestry as a crucial component of livability in communities and targets decision makers as champions for message delivery.

Benefits: Promotes continued investment in community trees by enlisting support for tree care and planting programs. Kit products include: Top 10 Reasons We Need Trees Flyer, sample letter to the editor, sample action alert, fact sheets on benefits of trees, press articles, and PowerPoint presentation.

Funded by: NUCFAC

Location: Newtown Square, PA

Partners: US Forest Service, Northeastern Area State and Private Forestry, Ohio DNR, NJ DEP Community Forestry program, MD DNR FS, PA DCNR Rural Section Program, Delaware DOA FS, DC Urban Forestry Administration, WV DOF Urban Forestry program

Urban Projects Newsletter

Description: Periodic newsletter produced by the Morgantown field office. The newsletter highlights a particular project and a partner, provides news from the Forest Service and Mid-Atlantic states, presents research findings and new technology transfer products, and lists new calendar items.

Benefits: Keeps Mid-Atlantic customers fully apprised of current news, products and events in U&CF.

Funded by: US Forest Service, Northeastern Area

Location: Mid-Atlantic Center for Urban and Community Forestry

Archived newsletters: http://www.na.fs.fed.us/urban/newsltr/archives.shtm

Urban Watershed Forestry Manual

Description: This three-part manual series is designed to protect and restore urban watersheds, and is particularly focused on using trees for stormwater treatment and planting trees in the urban landscape. The three parts of the manual series are:

Benefits: The manual introduces the emerging topic of urban watershed forestry and presents new methods for systematically measuring watershed forest cover and techniques for maintaining or increasing this cover. It presents specific ways to enable developers, engineers or landscape architects to incorporate more trees into a development site. The manual also introduces conceptual designs for stormwater treatment practices that utilize trees as part of the design, and it provides detailed guidance on urban tree planting that is applicable at both the development site and the watershed scale.

Funded by: US Forest Service

Location: Center for Watershed Protection, Ellicott City, MD

Partners: US Forest Service, Center for Watershed Protection

Southern Area

Changing Roles: Wildland-Urban Interface Professional Development Program

Description: This program provides state and federal natural resource agencies with a set of flexible resources to conduct their own training programs, aimed toward building skills and tools to successfully tackle WUI issues.

Benefits: These professional development modules were designed to assist agencies at the forefront of the rapid transition of the southern landscape. The South has the greatest private land ownership and the fastest population growth of any other region of the nation. This professional development program will help agency staff better understand the wildland-urban interface issues within a local policy framework and communicate the management of forests and other natural areas with the best available science.

Funded by: Southern Group of State Foresters, Southern Research Station, US Fish & Wildlife

Location: InterfaceSouth website

Partners: University of Florida, Southern Group of State Foresters, US Fish & Wildlife
Cooperators: Virginia Tech, Auburn University, Southern Regional Extension Forestry, North Carolina State University

Gulf Coast Tree Assessments – Hurricane Katrina

Description: The Southern Center for Urban Forestry Research & Information (SCUFR&I) recently coordinated the Gulf Coast Tree Assessment Project (GCTA) in Louisiana and Mississippi. Over thirty-five Certified Arborists volunteered to work in the area affected by Hurricane Katrina and helped complete assessments in Orleans, Jefferson and St. Tammany parishes in Louisiana and Harrison and Hancock counties in Mississippi during the past six months. The volunteers, all experienced arborists or urban foresters, were trained in a rapid tree assessment procedure that is based on current arboricultural practices which include:

  • A Photographic Guide to the Evaluation of Hazard Trees in Urban Areas, 2nd Edition, 1994, Nelda Matheny and James R. Clark, International Society of Arboriculture.
  • Urban Tree Risk Management: A Community Guide to Program Design and Implementation, NA-TP-03-03, 2003, Richard J. Hauer and Gary R. Johnson, USDA Forest Service
  • During the project, thousands of trees on public and private property were evaluated that represent a risk to the public (e.g. on and along street rights-of-ways and in parks). The objective of the assessment was to make recommendations that would help communities reduce or eliminate that risk. This is accomplished by either pruning damaged limbs, or when necessary, removing the tree.
  • Tree assessments that resulted in a recommendation for tree removal included: cracked trunks, broken structural roots, root plate lifted and/or leaning trees, and standing dead trees.


  • Direct assistance to local communities affected by the disaster
  • Timely risk assessments by professionals along public Rights-of-Way
  • Demonstrate role of professional management to communities
  • Maps & data to facilitate local community discussions with FEMA
  • Opportunity of engage FEMA as professionals
  • National “springboard” for better coordination with FEMA and the Army Corps of Engineers for disaster planning and recovery

Funded by: Many sources of funding were tapped that included Region 8 S&PF, Southern Research Station, Northeastern Area S&PF (St. Paul), state forestry agencies, professional organizations, local communities, and local non-profits

Partners: The project was a partnership of professional organizations, industry, local communities, and state and federal agencies that have an interest in urban forestry. The Society of Municipal Arborists and the International Society of Arboriculture asked arborists experienced in storm mitigation and recovery to assist Gulf Coast communities in the evaluation of trees that remained following their initial storm clean-up.

i-Tree Case Studies

Description: i-Tree is a state-of-the-art, peer-reviewed software suite from the USDA Forest Service that provides urban and community forestry analysis and benefits assessment tools. The Southern Center for Urban Forestry Research & Information is committed to supporting the use of this suite of tools in the Southern Region. In order to better understand their role in promoting the use of these tools, the Southern Research Station partnered with urban foresters of the Georgia Forestry Commission to test the data collection protocol and reporting with two small communities near Athens. In addition to presentations to each of the community’s Tree Boards, the results of these test inventories will be displayed at the 2006 Annual Conference of the Georgia Urban Forest Council and staff will use the knowledge and experience already gained to train Region U&CF Coordinators at their winter training meeting.

Benefits: By the Center developing these case studies, local communities benefit by obtaining a street tree valuation, State agency staff gets a hands-on introduction to i-Tree, and State U&CF Coordinators have a specific example of i-Tree (STRATUM) implementation. In addition, Center staff benefits from the direct experience.

Funded by: Region 8, S&PF, Southern Research Station

Partners: Georgia Forestry Commission, City of Newborn, Georgia, City of Social Circle, Georgia, Georgia Urban Forest Council

U&CF Website

Description: The objective of the Urban Forestry South (UFSe) is to provide a user-friendly, accessible, and relevant (useful and up-to-date) Internet site that will help customers easily find information and services they need. The primary audience for UFSe is described as the “professional” urban forestry community. That is, those individuals who work, on a day-to-day basis, with the creation, protection and management of urban and community forests. This audience includes: state U&CF coordinators, other state forestry agency staff, researchers, state extension foresters, university service and outreach representatives, county and regional extension agents involved locally with urban forestry issues, municipal arborists and urban foresters, other urban foresters and arborists (consulting and commercial), and staff of NGOs (i.e. urban forest councils, land trusts and others). A secondary audience includes staff and elected officials of local governments and their volunteers serving on tree boards or other advisory committees that deal with urban and community forestry issues. UFSe is designed as a user supported site. This means that UFSe users that “register” and “log in” to the site will be encouraged to submit information (content) for inclusion. UFSe is a primary communication tool among the USDA FS, State U&CF Coordinators, and State Urban Forest Councils in this region.

Key components:


  • State-of-the-Art Content Management System (CMS)
  • Provides a flexible framework for knowledge dissemination
  • Allows any user to submit information for inclusion onto the website
  • Directly supports state U&CF programs

Funded by: Region 8, S&PF, Southern Research Station, Southern Group of State Foresters, Southern Region Extension, Warnell School of Forestry & Natural Resources

Partners: Warnell School of Forestry & Natural Resources, Southern Region Extension, Southern Group of State Foresters

Pacifc Southwest Area

Municipal Forest Resources Analyses

Description: These reports provide detailed knowledge on a particular city's tree resource. They include urban forest structure, function and value, along with resource management needs. A summary of annual benefits is provided that includes energy conservation, air quality, stormwater runoff control, and property value increase.

Benefits: Each of the cities represented in this research will be better able to justify funding, evaluate program cost-efficiency and alternative management structures, understand the relationship of trees to local quality of life issues, and develop alternative funding sources.

Funded by: US Forest Service, participating municipality

Partners: US Forest Service, University of California Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, and cities of Charleston, SC; Glendale, AZ; Fort Collins, CO; Berkeley, CA; Charlotte, NC; Boulder, CO; Minneapolis, MN; Cheyenne, WY; Santa Monica, CA; Albuquerque, NM; Bismarck, ND.

Tree Guides

Description: Tree Guides identify and describe the benefits and costs of planting trees in a specific climate region to assist community officials and tree managers increase public awareness and support for tree programs.

Benefits: The Guides can be used by any of the cities within the particular climate zone covered by the Guide. Each Guide answers a number of questions about the environmental and aesthetic benefits community trees provide:
What is their potential to improve environmental quality, conserve energy, and add value to communities?
Where should residential and public trees be placed to maximize their cost-effectiveness?
Which tree species will minimize conflicts with powerlines, sidewalks, and buildings?

Funded by: US Forest Service, reference city municipality

Partners: US Forest Service, University of California Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, and cities of Modesto, CA, Glendale, AZ; Fort Collins, CO; Longview, WA; Claremont, CA; Santa Monica, CA; Charlotte, NC; Minneapolis, MN

US Forest Service
Last modified: January 09, 2014