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Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Maximum possible tree height 130m ?

http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/310/5756/1896

Research on tree height limits and reasons why trees grow faster when younger.

1 comment:

ron lanner said...

The inconclusive researches cited in this article are classical examples of spinning one's wheels. The research group that claims 130 meters as the theoretical limit of tree height, due to water lifting characteristics, is safe in making their estimate in view of the maximum known height of a redwood being 113 meters. They are unlikely to be rebutted anytime soon, simply because it is unlikely a a 131 meter tree will suddenly be discovered.
The group that suspects photosynthesis becomes limited, thus preventing further height growth, forgets that the structural carbohydrates that make up the new growth of leading shoots is largely contributed from storage in older shoots that are already fully formed.
The only group looking at apical meristem aging is using grafting experiments similar to what has been done for a century or so.
Problems that appear intractable need new thinking, and there seems little of that around.