[Tagging] Feature Proposal - RFC - Dehesa

Joseph Eisenberg joseph.eisenberg at gmail.com
Sat Aug 31 12:09:44 UTC 2019

Re: "As for establishing two different landuse tags for the same
territory, it could be fine for me, but I don't know if that would
create rendering problems"

It's not so much of a problem; renders could choose to just show the
primary feature, or they could choose to interpret both tags. Since
the primary features are already established tags, most renders will
still show something (though only renders who interpret the secondary
feature will get it perfect)

The alternative, of having different tags for each combination, might
actually be a little more complicated. You would need a
meadow+forestry tag like dehesa or agroforestry, but also a
meadow+orchard tag (landuse=meadow_orchard?), a cropland+forestry tag,
cropland+orchard, orchard + forestry (e.g. shade-grown coffee), etc.,
and renders + other database users would have to look for each of
these new feature tags.

Also, when I hear "agroforestry" my first thought is "tree
plantation?" and second would be "christmas tree farm?" - I don't
immediately think "forestry mixed with agriculture", while I can
pretty quickly figure out that landuse=meadow +
landuse:secondary=forest is land that's used both for pasture and for

So I like the landuse:secondary=* and natural:secondary=* tags best.

(But if that's too complicated, feel free to use what works best for
your local community. Not every tag has to account for all

- Joseph

On 8/31/19, Diego Cruz <ginkarasu at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Peter,
> A dehesa is not just a type of farmland, because the surface is covered by
> trees that are regularly pruned and used for wood, so it is a mixed usage
> of farmland and forestry (and pasture).
> Best regards
> Diego
> El sáb., 31 ago. 2019 a las 12:47, Peter Elderson (<pelderson at gmail.com>)
> escribió:
>> It appears to be a specific type of farmland, so landuse=farmland +
>> farmland=dehesa would say it all and disrupt nothing.
>> Mvg Peter Elderson
>> Op 31 aug. 2019 om 12:25 heeft Diego Cruz <ginkarasu at gmail.com> het
>> volgende geschreven:
>> Hi Cristoph,
>> Thank you for your feedback, it's really appreciated. You are completely
>> right when you say that dehesa might exclude similar environments in
>> other
>> parts of the world, and that is of course not my intention. I just used
>> the
>> word dehesa because it appears as such in Wikipedia. Among your three
>> proposals, I would go with landuse=agroforestry, because it would be a
>> way
>> of reflecting this mixed usage of land without being too local. As for
>> establishing two different landuse tags for the same territory, it could
>> be
>> fine for me, but I don't know if that would create rendering problems (as
>> I
>> mentioned, I'm new to this). I don't think this should be resolved with
>> secondary tags, because a dehesa is an entity in itself and the uses of
>> the
>> land are not subordinated to each other.
>> I will wait for more replies before modifying my proposal.
>> Best regards
>> Diego
>> El vie., 30 ago. 2019 a las 12:00, Christoph Hormann (<osm at imagico.de>)
>> escribió:
>>> On Friday 30 August 2019, Diego Cruz wrote:
>>> >
>>> > I have recently proposed a new tag in the Wiki, because none of the
>>> > existing landuse tags seem to match it. A dehesa is a type of land
>>> > that combines a forest with either fields or pasturelands (or both)
>>> > at the same time. It is extensively used in the Iberian Peninsula,
>>> > both in Spain and Portugal. Please see the details in my proposal
>>> > below:
>>> >
>>> > https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Proposed_features/Dehesa
>>> This is certainly a valid idea for inventing a new tag and it is good
>>> that you open up discussion early.  Let me take this as an example for
>>> two things that have in the past been decisive on the broader success
>>> of tags:
>>> * local verifiability.  The primary definition of your tag is for areas
>>> in a certain region that are in the cultural tradition of that region
>>> called a certain way.  You try to list a few verifiable criteria what
>>> not to use the tag for - but these are one sided criteria.  Because
>>> natural=wood does not rule out use as pasture (and neither does
>>> landuse=orchard, which is also used for cork oak plantations),
>>> landuse=farmland does not rule out the presence of trees or the use as
>>> pasture and many savannas (for which we have no specific tag at the
>>> moment) are created by human influence.  A good tag is one where a
>>> local observer, even a casual one like a traveler quickly coming
>>> through, can without much difficulty determine locally if the tag
>>> applies or not.
>>> * generic meaning.  As already mentioned you draft this as a region
>>> specific tag although agroforestry is a practice that exists in many
>>> different parts of the world in different forms.  Such tag will either
>>> stay a local speciality tag without much chance for being interpreted
>>> by global data users and possibly mirrored by other region specific
>>> tags with similar but slightly different meaning or it will morph into
>>> a broad umbrella tag - for example for any kind of 'area with trees
>>> that does not really qualify as wood/forest'.  Well known examples for
>>> such tags are natural=fell and landuse=village_green.
>>> There are three potential tagging concepts i could imagine could be
>>> derived from your idea that would seem more promising in that regard:
>>> * a tag for agroforestry landuse.  This of course would only be locally
>>> verifiable if there is active agricultural use.  That would only
>>> qualify those dehesas that are actively used for agriculture as such.
>>> And it would say very little about the physical appearance and
>>> ecological characteristics of an area.
>>> * establishing a generic tagging concept for secondary characteristics
>>> of areas - like use of orchards as pasture, underbrush in a forest or
>>> scattered trees on a meadow.  This could be quite easily implemented
>>> using natural:secondary=*, landuse:secondary=* etc.  Dehesas would
>>> under such scheme be something like
>>> - landuse=farmland + landuse:secondary=orchard
>>> - landuse=meadow + landuse:secondary=orchard
>>> - landuse=orchard + landuse:secondary=meadow
>>> * creating one or more region specific secondary tags for exising
>>> primary tags like landuse=farmland or landuse=orchard for documenting
>>> the region specific ecological characteristics of the area.
>>> --
>>> Christoph Hormann
>>> http://www.imagico.de/
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Tagging mailing list
>>> Tagging at openstreetmap.org
>>> https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/tagging
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