by MF Winn, PA Araman, S Lee

USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station, Asheville, NC


Assessments of tree health and growth are usually based on ground-based measurements and visual estimations, but these methods can be very subjective and can vary greatly based on the observer, weather, tree species, etc. The UrbanCrowns software tool is a Windows-based program that was developed to provide a more objective approach to assessing tree crowns that can be used to monitor tree growth and condition over time. The output of the tool can also be used as a foundation to quantify ecosystem services. Users are required to photograph the subject tree and perform a few field measurements. After the image is uploaded into the program, reference lines are drawn and the crown is delineated. The results provided to the user include crown height and diameter, live crown ratio, volume, density, and transparency. This report introduces UrbanCrowns, provides instructions on its use, and presents an overview of how it works. The software itself can be downloaded at

Publication Type: Technical report
Keywords: inventory, software, tree growth, tree health, urban forest management, and urban forestry