Sean Henry is a Research Technician at the Bartlett Tree Research Laboratory and Arboretum in Charlotte, NC.  He is a commercially licensed drone pilot and has been studying the use of drones in Arboriculture for the past five years.  In addition to flying UAS, he works with Dr. Tom Smiley studying soils and fertilizers, lightning protection in trees, cabling, bracing, and conducting tests on drought resistance, tree growth regulators, and saltwater intrusion remediation.

  • 3:00P | Using Drones in Arboriculture

    Unmanned aircraft systems (UASs) or “drones” are increasingly being used in the green industry, particularly in agriculture, to reduce costs and increase the speed of labor intensive tasks such as spraying, crop monitoring, even seeding. Henry will discuss Bartlett Tree Research Laboratory’s use of drones in arboriculture as well as some other uses in the 21st century landscape. Topics will include an overview of different types of drones, basics of flight control, rules, regulations and licensing, aerial surveys of a property, using drone photography to manage arboretum collections, conducting tree canopy inspections, multispectral photography to create normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) imagery and mapping, spraying, beneficial insect releases, and other novel uses of a drone in tree care. At the end of the presentation a live demonstration will be conducted showing how to fly a drone to conduct a tree canopy evaluation.


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