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I have been having trouble finding appropriate tags for planters. For any confused by the term, they are often placed in town squares and other landscaped areas, also referred to as raised or brick planters.

I'm sure there must be examples out there but I can't find any.

The area concerned is though not shown on the standard map (that is not my issue).

and webcam image at link text wooden seats/planters are in the foreground of the top image, brick planter at the far edge of the square

asked 26 Aug '12, 11:27

fruit-uk's gravatar image

accept rate: 25%

I used barrier=retaining_wall plus leisure=garden as that seemed to describe the feature reasonably well but was not convinced it was correct (JOSM also complained about lack of a physical tag).

As they are a very common feature in many (in the UK at least) villages, towns and parks perhaps a new tag of planter should be used together with construstion material etc.

Puzzled that no-one has raised the issue before that I can find.

(30 Aug '12, 16:51) fruit-uk

I thought I should revisit to conclude for future reference...

I joined the tagging list as suggested and asked the same question. The thread was quite short, so no contentious issues. the final post seemed to sum things up quite nicely.

man_made=planter if used as barrier (as in my case with bollards either side) add barrier=planter or barrier=yes if used for traffic calming to form a choker or chicane, tag that part of the road with traffic_calming=choker or chicane.

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answered 23 Sep '12, 08:46

fruit-uk's gravatar image

accept rate: 25%

To the best of my knowledge, there is no existing tagging scheme for planters.

So it's now up to you (or anybody else who is interested in mapping them) to define a tag. Choose it in a manner that does not conflict with any existing tags, and that preferably makes it clear what the tag is intended for even without reading a definition.

A straightforward pick would be to use "planter" as the value. I'm not sure about the best key, but man_made=planter might be a decent choice. Alternatively, you could make up an entirely new category of features with its own key that could also include other greenery details, such as individual bedding areas? In the past, people have asked how these should be mapped, too.

No matter which solution you come up with, it would be helpful (not required, however) to discuss this with other mappers. Suitable places are the tagging mailing list or the forums. If people generally like your idea, a wiki proposal is a possible next step, even though it is quite a bit of work.

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answered 30 Aug '12, 17:17

Tordanik's gravatar image

accept rate: 35%

I found the following discussion in september 2009 on the OSM main mailing list: (and nexts)

The sarcastic answers show that many people have doubts about tagging such things, especially if it is not permanent. If it's not the case, "barrier" seems to be the most proposed key. Then choose a value, e.g. "bollard" like in the discussion mentionned above or why not a new value like "barrier=planter".

But this should be discussed on the tagging mailing list; this help site is not the right place to start a discussion.

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answered 30 Aug '12, 17:36

Pieren's gravatar image

accept rate: 15%

edited 30 Aug '12, 19:26

Many, perhaps most, in the UK are permanent and really part of the street furniture so I feel should be mapped in some way. Certainly in some instances they are used as barriers in the same way as railings, a brick wall or a row of bollards.

I have found some better images, the first two rows show the market square as it is now

I'll take a look at the tagging list as suggested and see how that goes

(30 Aug '12, 18:10) fruit-uk

Reusing this old thread, rather than creating a new one, it's a shame that they don't render in any of the regular layers, as many of the planters in the UK are very much permanent and indeed historical structures, reusing old cattle and horse troughs.

One which I've mapped, for example is Grade II listed.

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answered 15 Mar '23, 20:05

Mikey%20Co's gravatar image

Mikey Co
accept rate: 0%


I did some own research and wasn't able to find anything appropriate either.

In such a case, if you really think this is map-worthy, it is to you to define a reasonable way of mapping the planters. IMHO I wouldn't go off and create something completly new, but for example a sub-type of leisure=garden (this is not a well thought out proposal).

If the impact of your proposal is large I would suggest going through the proposal system, in any case please document your system in the wiki.

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answered 30 Aug '12, 15:49

SimonPoole's gravatar image

SimonPoole ♦
accept rate: 18%


If you don't find an appropriate tag, then the one single thing you should definitely avoid is to bend the definition of an existing tag until it almost-kind-of fits what you want. For example, tagging a planter as a "garden" is a textbook example for something you should not do.

If you cannot find an existing tag for something, invent your own, and preferably discuss your ideas with others.

(30 Aug '12, 16:06) Tordanik

Actully a planter would fit perfectly in the current definition of even without using a subtype.

(30 Aug '12, 16:17) SimonPoole ♦

Even if you can somehow justify that interpretation based on the wording on the wiki page, an individual planter is clearly not what most existing users of the tag (both applications and mappers) had in mind when using leisure=garden.

(30 Aug '12, 17:00) Tordanik
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question asked: 26 Aug '12, 11:27

question was seen: 4,114 times

last updated: 15 Mar '23, 20:05

NOTICE: is being shutdown on 1st March 2024. Please use the OpenStreetMap Community Forum