There are many factors which can be considered, when looking at diversity within a tree population. These include:
A tree diversity report looks at each of these and provides recommendations as to strategic interventions which might be made to improve diversity within the population.
The aim of the report is to provide the necessary information to create a resilient urban forest and to highlight interventions which might be made to achieve this. It is generally accepted that the more diverse a tree population is, the less vulnerable it is to the threats which may emerge both now and in the future from imported pests and diseases and the challenges of climate change.
It is also accepted that tree populations lack diversity in age and size, with many populations being over-reliant on young trees. Yet it is the older, larger trees that provide the most benefits.
Identifying this lack of diversity allows a focus to be developed where older, larger trees are protected and managed in a more educated way, conserving the benefits they provide into the future.
The use of clonal selections for tree planting, whilst the trees are often valuable in themselves, has to be managed with caution. It should be remembered that all clonal selections are genetically identical and therefore universally vulnerable to a specific pest or disease.
Not all communities are equally served by tree populations and there are often areas which are clearly disadvantaged when it comes to tree cover. This environmental inequity is also a question of tree diversity. Using GIS map overlays, such environmental inequities can be identified and addressed within a strategic plan. Our Tree Diversity Reports pull all of these considerations together, prioritising actions in a series of recommendations.