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Trees in Biological News

Large trees declining in Yosemite

Large trees have declined in Yosemite National Park during the 20th century, and warmer climate conditions may play a role. The number of large-diameter trees in the park declined 24 percent between the 1930s and 1990s. U.S. Geological Survey and University of Washington scientists compared the...

New discovery suggests trees evolved camouflage defense against long extinct predator

Many animal species such as snakes, insects and fish have evolved camouflage defences to deter attack from their predators. However research published in New Phytologist has discovered that trees in New Zealand have evolved a similar defence to protect themselves from extinct giant birds, provi...

Tires made from trees -- better, cheaper, more fuel efficient

CORVALLIS, Ore. Automobile owners around the world may some day soon be driving on tires that are partly made out of trees which could cost less, perform better and save on fuel and energy. Wood science researchers at Oregon State University have made some surprising findings about the potent...

Ferns took to the trees and thrived

DURHAM, N.C. -- As flowering plants like giant trees quickly rose to dominate plant communities during the Cretaceous period, the ferns that had preceded them hardly saw it as a disappointment. In fact, they flourished. While modern tropical rain forests were becoming established, ferns climbed...

When palm trees gave way to spruce trees

This release is available in French . For climatologists, part of the challenge in predicting the future is figuring out exactly what happened during previous periods of global climate change. One long-standing climate puzzle relates to a sequence of events 33.5 million years ago in t...

Study finds hemlock trees dying rapidly, affecting forest carbon cycle

Otto, NC New research by U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station (SRS) scientists and partners suggests the hemlock woolly adelgid is killing hemlock trees faster than expected in the southern Appalachians and rapidly altering the carbon cycle of these forests. SRS researchers and cooperato...

California study shows shade trees reduce summertime electricity use

PORTLAND, Ore. January 5, 2009. A recent study shows that shade trees on the west and south sides of a house in California can reduce a homeowner's summertime electric bill by about $25.00 a year. The study, conducted last year on 460 single-family homes in Sacramento, is the first large-scale s...

Urban trees enhance water infiltration

MADISON, WI, NOVEMBER 17, 2008 Global land use patterns and increasing pressures on water resources demand creative urban stormwater management. Traditional stormwater management focuses on regulating the flow of runoff to waterways, but generally does little to restore the hydrologic cycle disrup...

Diversity of trees in Ecuador's Amazon rainforest defies simple explanation

Trees in a hyper-diverse tropical rainforest interact with each other and their environment to create and maintain diversity, researchers report in the Oct. 24 issue of the journal Science . This study was conducted in the Yasuni forest dynamics plot of the Pontificia Universidad Catlica del Ecua...

Shade trees can protect coffee crops

Sustainable farming that employs shade trees may improve crops' resistance to temperature and precipitation extremes that climate changes are expected to trigger, according to an article published in the October issue of BioScience . The article, by Brenda B. Lin, Ivette Perfecto, and John Vander...

Extinction most likely for rare trees in the Amazon rainforest

Common tree species in the Amazon will survive even grim scenarios of deforestation and road-building, but rare trees could suffer extinction rates of up to 50 percent, predict Smithsonian scientists and colleagues in the Aug. 12 issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science...

Vine invasion? UWM ecologist looks at coexistence of trees and lianas

Among the hundreds of species of woody vines that University of WisconsinMilwaukee ecologist Stefan Schnitzer has encountered in the tropical forests of Panama, the largest has a stalk nearly 20 inches in circumference. "That's like a large tree," says Schnitzer. "And because it winds itself u...

Ancient oak trees help reduce global warming

COLUMBIA, Mo. The battle to reduce carbon emissions is at the heart of many eco-friendly efforts, and researchers from the University of Missouri have discovered that nature has been lending a hand. Researchers at the Missouri Tree Ring Laboratory in the Department of Forestry discovered that tree...

Secrets of cooperation between trees and fungi revealed

Gent, Belgium Trees and fungi have constructed a close relationship with the passing of the ages. Fungi like to grow between the roots of trees and the arrangement is beneficial to both partners. Their delicate balance is now being revealed for the very first time. VIB researchers at Ghent Unive...

Why juniper trees can live on less water

DURHAM, N.C. -- An ability to avoid the plant equivalent of vapor lock and a favorable evolutionary history may explain the unusual drought resistance of junipers, some varieties of which are now spreading rapidly in water-starved regions of the western United States, a Duke University study has f...

Fighting pollution the poplar way: Trees to clean up Indiana site

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue University researchers are collaborating with Chrysler LLC in a project to use poplar trees to eliminate pollutants from a contaminated site in north-central Indiana. The researchers plan to plant transgenic poplars at the site, a former oil storage facility near K...

Climate change predicted to drive trees northward

The most extensive and detailed study to date of 130 North American tree species concludes that expected climate change this century could shift their ranges northward by hundreds of kilometers and shrink the ranges by more than half. The study, by Daniel W. McKenney of the Canadian Forest Service...

Canada provides $1.4M for removal of hazardous trees from provincial recreation sites

MACKENZIE, BRITISH COLUMBIA Speaking on behalf of the Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources, Jay Hill, Member of Parliament for Prince GeorgePeace River, today announced that Canadas New Government will contribute more than $1.4 million over the next two years to support British Col...

Australia's climate: Drought and flooding in annual rings of tropical trees

Annual rings are acclaimed in representing natural climate archives. For the temperate latitudes it is known that the growth of these annual rings depend mainly on temperature and precipitation. In the tropics, however, with only slight seasonal variations, the correlation is not so evident. No...

Organic plant waste proves effective weed control for citrus trees

GIZA, EGYPTInterest in organic crop production is increasing around the world. Organics are healthy for consumers while adding environmental benefits and decreasing the amount of synthetic herbicides in foods, soil, and water. While organics gain popularity with consumers, organic farmers are face...

Flame retardants prove ineffective on fresh-cut Christmas trees

PULLAUP, WA This Christmas season, think twice about spending money on a commercial flame retardant for your Christmas tree. The good, old-fashioned methodkeeping your tree in a container of fresh wateris probably all you need to keep your tree green and healthy. Researchers have determined that ...

Flame retardants prove ineffective on fresh-cut Christmas trees

PULLAUP, WA This Christmas season, think twice about spending money on a commercial flame retardant for your Christmas tree. The good, old-fashioned methodkeeping your tree in a container of fresh wateris probably all you need to keep your tree green and healthy. Researchers have determined that ...

Forest inventories in California include more than trees

PORTLAND, Ore. December 3, 2008. The first 5-year forest inventory report for California's private and public lands is now available to the public: California's Forest Resources, 2001-2005: Five-Year Forest Inventory and Analysis Report. Here are some key findings from the report: Forests cov...

Forest inventories in Oregon include more than trees

PORTLAND, Ore. December 3, 2008. The first 5-year forest inventory report for Oregon's private and public lands is now available to the public: Oregon's Forest Resources, 2001-2005: Five-Year Forest Inventory and Analysis Report. Here are some key findings from the report: Oregon's forests ...

Fuel from fiber -- Pretreatment can put corn stalks, trees in your car's tank

"Put a tree in your tank." Fuel companies aren't touting that slogan. At least not yet. But thanks to research done in part by Bruce Dale, Michigan State University professor of chemical engineering and materials science, making fuels from poplar trees and corn stalks is becoming more efficient a...

How trees manage water in arid environments

Water scarcity is slowly becoming a fact of life in increasingly large areas. The summer of 2006 was the second warmest in the continental United States since records began in 1895, according to the National Climatic Data Center. Moderate to extreme drought conditions were evident in about 40 ...

Mystery of fossilized trees is solved

An international research team has found evidence of the Earth's earliest forest trees, dating back 385 million years. Upright stumps of fossilised trees were uncovered after a flash flood in Gilboa, upstate New York, more than a century ago. However, until now, no-one has known what the entire t...

Of mice, men, trees and the global carbon cycle

A team led by a University of Minnesota researcher has found a universal rule that regulates the metabolism of plants of all kinds and sizes and that may also offer a key to calculating their carbon dioxide emissions, a number that must be known precisely in order to construct valid models of globa...

Amazon trees much older than assumed, raising questions on global climate impact of region

Trees in the Amazon tropical forests are old. Really old, in fact, which comes as a surprise to a team of American and Brazilian researchers studying tree growth in the world's largest tropical region. Using radiocarbon dating methods, the team, which includes UC Irvine's Susan Trumbore, found th...

Why Christmas trees are not extinct

Conifers such as Christmas trees suffer a severe plumbing problem. The "pipes" that carry water through firs, pines and other conifers are 10 times shorter than those in flowering trees. But a University of Utah study suggests why conifers not only survive but thrive: efficient microscopic valves l...

Shade trees getting 'scorched' by plant disease

Bacterial leaf scorch is severely affecting urban shade trees grown not only to provide shade, but to help clear the air, reduce noise, and improve the aesthetics in many U.S. communities, say plant pathologists with The American Phytopathological Society (APS). According to Ann Brooks Gould, a...

Family trees of ancient bacteria reveal evolutionary moves

A geomicrobiologist at Washington University in St. Louis has proposed that evolution is the primary driving force in the early Earth's development rather than physical processes, such as plate tectonics. Carrine Blank, Ph.D., Washington University assistant professor of geomicrobiology in the D...

Poplar trees redirect resources in response to simulated attack

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have applied some of the same techniques used in medical imaging to track the distribution of nutrients in poplar trees in response to a simulated insect attack. The research provides new insights on a long-debated theory ...

Plastic that grows on trees

Scientists have discovered the most effective method yet to convert glucose, found in plants worldwide and nature’s most abundant sugar, to HFM, a chemical that can be broken into components for products now made from petroleum. It has been an elusive goal for the legion of chemists trying to p...

Lessons from the orangutans: Upright walking may have begun in the trees

By observing wild orangutans, a research team has found that walking on two legs may have arisen in relatively ancient, tree-dwelling apes, rather than in more recent human ancestors that had already descended to the savannah, as current theory suggests. These findings appear in the 1 June 200...

Urban water ecology at the ESA annual meeting

...es that even a small amount of shoreline vegetation can serve as insect habitat. "Our shorelines need to remain as intact as possible, with a mix of trees and shrubs," she says. "But we may not need a dense, native forest. There likely are designs that are compatible with both lakeshore development and s...

Douglas-fir, geoducks make strange bedfellows in studying climate change

... to alpine forests. "The next step was to use the longest-lived organisms trees and the geoduck to tell us about climate prior to the start of instrumenta...ures, such as during an El Nino year, it can have a profound impact on both trees and marine life. In general, Black said, warmer temperatures boost metaboli...

University of Toronto helps to 'barcode' the world's plants

... The methodology will also be used immediately in global projects such as Tree-BOL which aims to build the DNA barcode database for all the species of trees of the world many of which are of economic and conservation importance. The report appears this week in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sc...

Key OSU water research receives national funding

...e to determine specific data about how the encroachment of eastern redcedar trees in tallgrass prairie alters the dynamic response between precipitation and ...ers seasonal water-use patterns. "For example, it is known that redcedar trees use water year-round," Zou said. "However, the degree of difference in wate...

Spring cold snap helps with stream ecosystem research

...e change could have negative effects on stream and forest ecosystems. As warm weather arrives sooner in many parts of the nation, forest plants and trees on the banks flourish, shading the stream from sunlight and causing an overall decrease in productivity in the late spring and summer. A research pape...
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