Monthly Vegetation Index

  • Released Thursday, October 24, 2013

One of the primary interests of NASA's Earth Sciences Program is to study the role of terrestrial vegetation in large-scale processes with the goal of understanding how our world functions as a system. These maps show monthly Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) values—a measure of the "greenness" of Earth's landscapes—from February 2000 to the present. The values, derived using data collected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) onboard NASA's Terra satellite, range from -0.1 to 0.9 and have no unit. Rather, they are index values in which higher values (0.4 to 0.9) show lands covered by green, leafy vegetation and lower values (0 to 0.4) show lands where there is little or no vegetation. Dark green areas show where there was a lot of green leaf growth; light greens show where there was some green leaf growth; and tan areas show little or no growth. Black means no data.

For More Information


Based on images by Reto Stockli, NASA's Earth Observatory Group, using data provided by the MODIS Land Science Team.

Release date

This page was originally published on Thursday, October 24, 2013.
This page was last updated on Tuesday, November 14, 2023 at 12:24 AM EST.


This visualization is related to the following missions:


This visualization can be found in the following series:

Datasets used in this visualization

Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details, nor the data sets themselves on our site.