Some of the planet’s smallest living beings live for only seconds at a time. As it takes only this long for single-celled organisms to split into multiple cells, this tiny window is enough to guarantee their continued existence. At the complete opposite end of the long-liveness scale are trees. Some individual trees known to science have been alive since the time of the earliest human civilizations. As you search “tree removal services near me,” consider how long yours may have been around.
How Many Years Does it Take For Saplings To Reach Maturity?
Not all tree species, of course, live to be thousands of years old. Most need to grow relatively quickly to ensure they aren’t devoured by hungry herbivores or destroyed by natural climate events. As soon as they reach maturity, they reproduce, completing their lifecycle.
Though some trees reproduce many times throughout their lives, the growth-to-reproduction period is by far the most vital to their lineage’s survival. If a plant grows too slowly, it is virtually guaranteed to be killed before it has a chance to reproduce.
So, how many years does it take for a tree to reach its maximum height? The answer to this question depends entirely on the species in question and the environment it needs to live in. Generally speaking, trees grow faster in warm environments than in cold ones. They also grow faster at low altitudes than they do at high mountain peaks.
Species living in low-lying equatorial regions can grow several meters per year. In colder areas at the same elevation, such as those in Central Canada, a tree may only grow a meter or so a year. Temperature isn’t the most important factor that influences height, however. Some of the tallest trees in the world grow in the US’s California coast and Pacific Northwest, in which yearly rainfall totals fit the criteria for a “rainforest,” even though temperatures are significantly lower than the rainforests of the tropics.
Each tree species has a rough maximum height. An individual may or may not reach this maximum, depending on whether it receives enough water, soil nutrients, sunlight, and fair weather. These growth factors may also increase the speed at which a tree grows to reach its adult height.
Under ideal conditions, it may take between 15 and 30 years for a tree to reach its peak. Under adverse conditions, it can take hundreds of years.
How Can You Tell How Old a Tree is?
It can be very difficult to tell how old an individual is without damaging it. You can, however, make a rough estimate based on the size of the trunk. A larger, thicker trunk indicates a longer life.
Each winter, trees react to the cold, adding a visible layer that appears inside the trunk. Multiple layers can be counted like the pages of a book. If you want to obtain such a year count, there are two ways to find it: core sampling and cutting.
When studying large forests, scientists called “dendrochronologists” often drill core samples into aged plants to obtain these layers without killing them. This process yields a large cylinder that can be easily read. Core sampling is expensive and can still be very harmful, however, so scientists and laypeople sometimes prefer to simply cut trees down to count their layers instead.
Tree Removal Services
If a tree on your property is rotting or overgrown, it may pose a threat to you or your property. Tree removal can be difficult and dangerous, so you should always rely on a professional. At Martin’s Tree Service, we offer a full suite of tree services, from pruning to stump removal. Request a quote online today.