— Jim Orr, Asplundh, PA
Tree inventories are used to review the current state of your urban forest. A tree inventory is the gathering of information on the health and diversity of the urban forest. Tree inventories are a good management tool.
You cannot manage the urban forest effectively unless you know what you have, and where the trees are. What kind of trees, how many street trees, what condition are they in? These are all questions you need to know. Additionally, tree populations are constantly changing, and the older the inventory the less accurate the inventory will be.
When communities are handing out thousands of dollars they don’t want you guessing at the number of trees. Do an inventory.
— Gordon White, Okotoks, Alberta, Canada
Experts recommend that you know what you have and what you are responsible for. Inventory everything you manage and/or own. Develop a process to track the costs to maintain your assets.
i-Tree Streets is one tool that you could use to analyze a street tree inventory. It is an easy-to-use, computer-based program that allows any community to conduct and analyze a street tree inventory. Baseline data can be used to effectively manage the resource, develop policy and set priorities. Using a sample or an existing inventory of street trees, this software allows managers to evaluate current benefits, costs, and management needs. http://itreetools.com/streets/index.php.
For Storm Preparedness
If a disaster happens to the urban forest and you have an inventory, you will know the trees you have, where they are, the species type and their value.
Know where the trees are in relation to critical areas or locations such as hospitals, major roads, emergency shelters, responder (fire/police/ emergency operations) buildings, city service centers, and locate debris storage yard.
Eckert, K. Arbor Global, HI. (2012 November 26). Storm response interview.