Incisive interpretations of urban-forest sustainability are important in furthering our understanding of how to sustain the myriad values associated with urban forests. Our analysis of earlier interpretations reveals conceptual gaps. These interpretations are attached to restrictive definitions of a sustainable urban forest and limited to a rather mechanical view of maintaining the biophysical structure of trees. The probing of three conceptual domains (urban forest concepts, sustainable development, and sustainable forest management) leads to a broader interpretation of urban-forest sustainability as the process of sustaining urban forest values through time and across space. We propose that values—and not services, benefits, functions or goods—is a superior concept to refer to what is to be sustained in and by an urban forest.