Public parks are an integral part of the urban landscape. They are popular spaces used for exercise, relaxation, and play. Keeping these spaces vibrant and lush encourages their use, which in turn shows park districts, park foundations, and city administrations the value these spaces provide.
TreeKeeper®, a tree inventory management tool from Davey Resource Group, Inc., can help urban foresters manage, maintain, and assess a park’s trees and other assets to ensure their public parks remain a healthy and thriving asset in the community.
Using data to increase safety and reliability
TreeKeeper helps urban foresters track the condition of their trees, tree maintenance records, GPS coordinates, photos, and other detailed information. Park administrators use TreeKeeper to keep parks safe by conducting risk assessments on hazard trees and input a risk rating based on the results. This allows administrators to create a maintenance schedule and mitigate compromised safety.
TreeKeeper can also track trees that community members donated, from the time they are planted to the long-term maintenance of the tree, to show donors the tree’s health and longevity.
Tracking progress and calculating benefits
The City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks oversees over 16,000 acres of parkland in California with the help of TreeKeeper. The department uses TreeKeeper to maintain species diversity, calculate ecological benefits, determine the health of trees, make sure the trees are regularly maintained, and assess risk. Internally, LA Parks uses TreeKeeper to create monthly reports on removals or plantings for the mayor’s office, and track progress on projects and events such as storms or fires.
LA Parks has 78,076 trees inventoried on TreeKeeper and is still in the process of completing their inventory. Through TreeKeeper, LA Parks is able to illustrate $6.15 in benefits for every $1 invested in their urban forest.
Connecting with the community
Prospect Park Alliance of Brooklyn, NYC partnered with Davey Resource Group, Inc. to survey half of Prospect Park’s 30,000 trees through a $75,000 Urban Forestry Grant from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Once the survey was complete, the Alliance used TreeKeeper to keep an inventory of the trees near specific managed areas, such as where crews mow grass and near trails.
Using Prospect Park’s TreeKeeper database, the public is able to search for trees in the park by trunk size, species, and more. The Alliance also uses TreeKeeper to monitor its commemorative tree program and Arbor Day community planting sites. The Alliance can also track the total yearly eco-benefits of the inventoried trees, such as air quality, water quality, energy savings, and property value benefits.
Keeping tabs on your trees
TreeKeeper helps park managers to not only plan and manage a tree inventory but reassess it as time goes on. With the help of TreeKeeper, parks everywhere are able to remain safe and vibrant spaces for their communities to enjoy.