Friday, January 20, 2012
How tall can trees grow?
Redwoods are pushing it
Here's a fun little bit of nature trivia: how tall can a tree get. Trees are driven (or pulled) upward as they attempt to outgrow competitors in the search for sunlight, but there is our old nemesis, gravity, holding them back. Researchers who have worked out the engineering here suggest there's a maximum between 122 and 130 meters. That's taller than the current champ, a coast redwoodreaching to 115m. (there are people who still search the forests for an overlooked record-breaker).
There are claims that coast redwoods exceeding 130m were felled in the early 20th century, and there are several claims for felled Australian mountain ash up to 150m! None of those records are documented photographically, although some include the claim that they were actually measured by a government or logging company surveyor after they fell.