Content: Research Questions, Objectives, Methods

Content and Research Questions of the Project

In the view of a fast changing climate is the question of plants, especially long-­living trees and their provided eco­system services of high relevance.

City trees are an integral part of urban areas, their growth and ecosystem services are - in particular for Euro­pean cities - hardly re­searched. Know­ledge about the growth of different species and different age classes at vary­ing growth sites and different climate conditions are scarce.

Moreover the services of city trees have been quantified only to minor degrees. The aim of this research project was to study the growth, provided eco­system services and perspectives of important and common urban tree species in a chang­ing climate.


Objective of the project was to model the growth of urban trees with an environ­­ment and climate sensitive single tree growth model in relation to the available ressources such as water and light from youth to high age. Eco­system services like carbon storage, shading, cooling effect and run-­off were quantified for impor­tant and common urban tree species for current climate condit­ions as well as under climate change scenarios.


The project was a continuation of the project City Tree I, which studied the growth, the space occu­pation and the services of the tree species small-­leaved lime (Tilia cordata) and black locust (Robinia pseudo­acacia) in the cities Munich and Wuerzburg.

The follow-up project City Tree II moreover dealt with the species plane (Platanus x acerifolia), horse chest­nut (Aesculus hippoc­astanum).With the newly developed model CityTree the growth and ecosystem services of four urban tree species could be simulated in relation to site conditions.

Moreover research was conducted in further cities (Nuremberg, Bayreuth, Hof and Kempten) to generalize assumptions on the growth behavior and ecosystem services of urban trees in Central Europe. By this, practically relevant guidelines for a sustainable management of urban trees can be provided.