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You are here: Home / Urban Forest Connections Webinars / New guidance for tracking long-term tree survival, growth, and health

New guidance for tracking long-term tree survival, growth, and health

Research field crew measuring a tree
Lara Roman, USDA Forest Service

New guidance for tracking long-term tree survival, growth, and health
September 9, 2020

Lara Roman, USDA Forest Service
Natalie van Doorn, USDA Forest Service
Dana Dentice, Pennsylvania Horticultural Society

Field monitoring of urban trees is essential to learn how urban forests change over time. Many arborists and urban forest managers worldwide seek to understand how their tree systems are faring in terms of growth, health, and mortality. The Urban Tree Growth & Longevity Working Group of the International Society of Arboriculture has developed standard protocols and effective strategies for long-term data collection. This new guidance, which includes a Field Guide, Resource Guide, and companion training videos, gives detailed instructions for how to record a small set of variables consistently over time that will support adaptive management. The intended users are any urban forestry professionals who intend to carry out field-based tree monitoring, whether with arborists, interns, or citizen scientists. Dr. Lara Roman will lay out the key practices and components of the Field Guide.  Dr. Natalie van Doorn will go deeper into specific tips for successful implementation. And Dana Dentice will illustrate how these protocols have been put to work in training volunteers in Philadelphia to successfully monitor young tree health and survival.

Presentations

View the webinar podcast »

Part 1: The Big Picture
Lara Roman Research Ecologist
USDA Forest Service

Part 2: Making it Happen
Natalie van Doorn
Research Urban Ecologist
USDA Forest Service

Part 3: Monitoring Standards in Action
Dana Dentice
Urban Forestry Program Manager
Pennsylvania Horticultural Society

Resources

Resources Mentioned in the Webinar

Tree Checker Report Card

Tree Checker Cheat Sheet

US Forest Service Resources

Urban Tree Monitoring: A Resource Guide
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.

Urban Tree Monitoring: A Field Guide
This report provides detailed protocols for urban tree monitoring data collection. Specifically, we discuss the core variables necessary for field-based monitoring projects, including field crew identification, field crew experience level, tree record identifier, location, site type, land use, species, mortality status, crown vigor, and trunk diameter. The intent of this Field Guide is to serve urban forest managers and researchers who collect longitudinal field data on urban trees, as well as interns and citizen scientists. This report is a companion document to Urban Tree Monitoring: A Resource Guide.

Best Practices for Urban Tree Monitoring: Five-Part Video Series
Field monitoring of urban trees is essential to understanding how urban forests change over time.  This five-part video series was designed to accompany the Field Guide and Resource Guide.