Proposed Features/Vegetation cover

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Cover of different vegetation forms
Status: Draft (under way)
Proposed by: Johan Jönsson
Tagging: trees:cover=closed / open / sparse
Applies to: area
Definition: the degree of landcover of a vegetation form. Taken from FAO.
Drafted on: 2012-07-03


This is a proposal to tag vegetated landcover in a way so that one could use the FAO system of Main Structural Vegetation Domains (by di Gregorio and Jansen 1996)

  • trees:cover = closed/open/sparse
  • shrubs:cover = closed/open/sparse
  • herbs:cover = closed/open/sparse

A vegetated area should have all three of the above tags, where "sparse" really means "sparse to absent".

From the FAO-paper: "Cover can be considered as the presence of a particular area of the ground, substrate or water surface covered by a layer of plants considered at the greatest horizontal perimeter level of each plant in the layer (Eiten, 1968)."

  • Closed >60 %,
  • Open 20% - 60 %
  • Sparse < 20 %.

"As herbaceous plants are seasonal in character, it is always assessed in terms of fullest development."

The three life forms trees/shrubs/herbs are supposed to be all that you need, they represent three layers and more information could be found in "general rules for classification". It is really straight forward.


Could be used to map areas according to the FAO-scheme.