[Tagging] landcover=trees definition

Daniel Koć daniel at xn--ko-wla.pl
Sun Aug 16 02:00:06 UTC 2015

W dniu 16.08.2015 1:27, Friedrich Volkmann napisał(a):

> No, because the landcover=* key is just nonsense. There is no 
> definition for


> that key. What does landcover mean? Vegetation? Soil? Atmosphere? 
> Buildings?
> Ocean? Everything we map is landcover in some respect. You could use
> landcover=motorway instead of highway=motorway, and 
> landcover=playground
> instead of leisure=playground. The landcover key matches all and 
> nothing.

Somebody has just suggested that one should tag the lawns as landuse 
because everything is "use", so this key can be stretched too.

> Furthermore, landcover=trees cannot serve as a substitute for 
> landuse=forest
> or natural=wood, because forests/woods not only consist of trees, but 
> also
> of shrubs, herbs, fungi, mosses, lichens, algae, animals, water, soil,
> gases, and diaspores.

Of course this is not a substitute for the forest and I try to be clear 
that I don't like it to be used as a general type.

If you know it's a forest, you should tag it accordingly (once we have 
definition again). But if all you know is "there are some trees", you 
don't know if there are all these things, so you can safely tell only 
about what you know, hence landcover=trees is what you really know.

> If you cannot decide between landuse=forest and natural=wood, take 
> either
> one. Just like picking a tracktype.

Last resort in case of doubts should be something more general, even 
partially, not rolling the dice! Of course that's what people do now, 
but we're discussing here to help them avoid such wicked games with 


Your questions about what lancover really is made me read the wiki and 
it seems it's just a twin for "surface", which "is meanwhile also used 
to indicate the surface type of larger areas, like for a Landuse but is 
generally used as a secondary tag."

This means more or less that maybe surface=trees would be good, however 
people use it very infrequently and I don't know if it is "primary" or 
"secondary" tag then:



"The train is always on time / The trick is to be ready to put your bags 
down" [A. Cohen]

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