The dataset contains vegetation type and plant structure in the middle reaches of the Heihe River Basin, which was used to validate products from remote sensing. It was generated from investigating the land cover strips of CASI and SASI the middle reaches of the Heihe River Basin between 25 June and 6 August in 2012. Instruments: High-precision handheld GPS (2-3 m) and digital camera were used as main tools in the survey. Measurement method: Vegetation range in the middle reaches of the Heihe River Basin and survey route could be decided with the help of Google Earth. Wuxing village in Xiaoman town was selected to survey detailed and other places were investigated as far to reach as possible. Main methods were to write down the longitude and latitude, phenology of the plant structure, take photos for the vegetation. Dataset contains: longitude and latitude, vegetation type, area and phenology. Observation Place: CASI flight area in artificial oasis in the middle reaches, CASI stripe flight area in the middle reaches and Zhangye district. Date: From 25 June and 6 August in 2012.