Because of their long lives and their value to humans, I often have trouble determining whether a tree is planted or wild, even when I am the observer.
Were the ngaio trees along the edge of the bay planted or did a bird drop the seeds? Did the rancher plant that oak before the ranch became a preserve? Often there is no way to get a definitive answer.
Surely anyone researching the distribution of trees recognizes this.
The other “problem” with trees is that people really want to know what species of trees are planted in their neighborhood. When people post tree species I don’t know, I often wish iNat had a project for mapping planted trees, with a crew of knowledgeable people to help identify them.
Maybe it’s time to accept that trees are special?