From Sapling to Maturity - Exploring Structural Diversity in Urban Forests
This presentation explores large trees in cities, whether they are present in high numbers or are under threat. While species selection and species diversity are addressed frequently in urban forestry discussions, less attention is paid to structural diversity. However, we know that numerous urban forest benefits are directly related to tree size, so it's worth assessing whether our cities contain sufficient numbers of large, mature trees. Pressures such as redevelopment, citizen preference, modern health and safety standards, or pest and disease outbreak can lead to a distinct gap at the upper end of an ideal tree size distribution. The results of a meta-analysis of published urban forest inventories will be presented, with specific attention given to tree structure. Pre-conceived notions will be challenged!