Navigation Links
The bigger the tree, the faster it grows
Date:1/17/2014

Lincoln, Neb., Jan. 15, 2013 -- Contrary to long-held misconceptions, trees never stop growing during their lifespans, a new study has found.

In fact, as they age, their growth accelerates, even after they've reached massive sizes. This means that older trees play a substantial and disproportionate role in the Earth's carbon cycle -- one of the cycles that makes Earth capable of sustaining life.

The groundbreaking findings are in a new study co-authored by University of Nebraska-Lincoln biologist Sabrina Russo and published today in Nature. Researchers analyzed the compiled biomass growth measurements of 673,046 trees belonging to 403 species from various temperate and tropical regions across six continents.

They concluded that for most tree species, mass growth rate continues to increase with their size, with some species' largest trees growing by a mass equivalent to a mid-sized tree in a single year.

"Looking at data from whole forests -- that is, all trees in a forest considered together as a unit -- it is often found that forest productivity declines with the age of the forest, but that does not mean that the growth of the oldest trees declines," said Russo, a forest ecologist in UNL's School of Biological Sciences. "What turns out to be key to understanding tree growth is to examine the growth pattern of each individual, not just the forest stand as a whole."

In addition to discovering this property of tree growth, the conclusions also contribute to understanding the global carbon cycle because trees, like all plants, take up carbon dioxide from the air and sequester it in their biomass.

"About 50 percent of a tree's wood is carbon, so a rapidly growing, large, old tree can remove huge amounts of carbon from the atmosphere, through an enormous photosynthetic flux -- far more than a younger, smaller tree can," Russo said.

"While they are alive, these giant elders of the forest play a disproportionately important role in a forest's carbon dynamics."

While 38 researchers from 29 institutions collaborated on the study, Russo was instrumental in the research. She contributed to development of the data analysis methods, as well as the analysis and interpretation of the results.

Russo's principal research site in Lambir Hills National Park in Malaysia on the island of Borneo also lent data to the study for 76 Southeast Asian tree species.


'/>"/>
Contact: Sabrino Russo
srusso2@unl.edu
402-472-8387
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Genetic discovery points the way to much bigger yields in tomato, other flowering food plants
2. Bigger, better, faster
3. Bigger lungs may be better for transplants
4. Bigger birth weight babies at greater risk of autism
5. Bigger creatures live longer, travel farther for a reason
6. For mitochondria, bigger may not be better
7. Want bigger plants? Get to the root of the matter
8. Bigger refuges needed to delay pest resistance to biotech corn
9. Bigger gorillas better at attracting mates and raising young
10. Trees grow faster and store more carbon as they age
11. EU policy is driving up demand for pollination faster than honeybee numbers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/11/2017)... NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ:   NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... independent Directors Mr. Robin D. Richards and Mr. ... the company,s corporate governance and expertise. ... Gino Pereira , Chief Executive Officer said," ... and benefiting from their considerable expertise as we move forward ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... SEATTLE , April 5, 2017  The Allen ... the Allen Cell Explorer: a one-of-a-kind portal and dynamic ... large-scale 3D imaging data, the first application of deep ... edited human stem cell lines and a growing suite ... the platform for these and future publicly available resources ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... , April 4, 2017 KEY FINDINGS ... to expand at a CAGR of 25.76% during the ... is the primary factor for the growth of the ... https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/4807905/ MARKET INSIGHTS The global stem ... technology, application, and geography. The stem cell market of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... ... today announced their digital pathology technology has the potential to eliminate subjectivity in ... centers in The Netherlands as part of the 2017 ISBI CAMELYON Digital ...
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... This ... informed consent (eConsent) solution that simplifies research studies, accelerates study startup, and improves ... Quorum, Q Consent™ is the first and only IRB-integrated eConsent solution . ...
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... ... who will review how testing for 1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D can enhance clinical practice. Participants ... D and 1,25 dihydroxyvitamin D. , Dr. Gregory Plotnikoff, senior consultant with Minnesota ...
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... ... a comprehensive rebrand and a name change to Fluence Analytics. , ... laboratory monitoring of polymer and biopharmaceutical manufacturing processes and R&D applications. The ...
Breaking Biology Technology: