Total height of a single tree
 Total height of a single tree Forest Measurement and Modelling.
 [Definition] Vertical component Slope height [Tree habit] Excurrent Deliquescent
 Total height is a very important tree variable. The total height (or potential height) of a woody plant is used to distinguish shrubs from trees. Specht (1970) for example, defines a tree as a woody plant, usually with a single stem, that is more than 5 m tall. Tree height is well correlated with other important tree and stand parameters. Tree volume Site - an indicator of the environmental conditions that exist in the immediate area. Thus, total tree height is often measured to provide quantitative information about a tree as well as qualitative information about the area. Definition Total tree height may be defined as the distance along the axis of the bole of the tree from the ground to the uppermost point (tip). In trees with a single, straight stem, this corresponds to the total length of the stem. On leaning trees, height may also expressed as the: Vertical component - the vertical distance from the ground to the uppermost point of the tree Slope or linear height - the length from the base of the tree along the axis of the bole to the uppermost tip of the tree. The linear component will always be greater than the vertical component for leaning trees. However, unless the lean is severe, the difference is rarely critical. The tree must be leaning by more than 18 degrees off vertical before the difference exceeds 5%. A lean in excess of 15 degrees looks severe. The vertical component (V) can be calculated from the slope (S) height (and visa-versa) if the horizontal distance (H) from the base of the tree to the point directly beneath the tip is known. S= Tree habit Excurrent Deliquescent Total height is most easily measured on trees with a well-defined tip - trees with an excurrent habit. Most conifers and many young trees are in this group. Trees with a spreading or rounded crown without a clearly defined tip have a deliquescent habit. Location of the uppermost point is more difficult in these types of trees. To locate the tip of a deliquescent tree, extend a line along the axis of the bole until it is judged to meet the crown surface. [totalhgt.htm] Revision: 6/1999 Cris.Brack@anu.edu.au