Join 3,524 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


The vanishing groves
October 17, 2012 7:45 PM   Subscribe

The vanishing groves: A chronicle of climates past and a portent of climates to come – the telling rings of the bristlecone pine.
posted by homunculus (19 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite

 
In other botanical news: Ancient flower lives only on two Spanish cliffs, and uses ants to survive
posted by homunculus at 7:52 PM on October 17, 2012 [1 favorite]


The bristlecone article is nicely written and compelling. Thanks!
posted by maxwelton at 8:43 PM on October 17, 2012


nice article, thanks.
posted by wilful at 9:16 PM on October 17, 2012


Outstanding read. Thanks.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 9:56 PM on October 17, 2012


I visited the bristlecones a few years ago on a plant science trip, and this article and the photos brought back what it felt like to be among those trees. They are so unfathomably ancient it's hard to imagine that in a few generations they may all be dead.
posted by oneirodynia at 10:28 PM on October 17, 2012


It seemed a very long article to say "there is evidence that climate change is making mountaintops more habitable, which may expose bristlecone pines to more predation."
posted by Joe in Australia at 12:54 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Great, but this reminded me of an even greater discovery (?):

Dendrochronologists at Arizona’s Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research have used the high living trees, and their dead ancestors, to piece together a tree-ring chronology stretching back 8,840 years, nearly the entirety of the Anthropocene.

The Tasmanian 10,500 year old Clonal Huon Pine forest (one tree over an entire mountain top)
posted by a non e mouse at 1:50 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


"In the end, the tree endures extreme environmental hardship so that it doesn’t have to endure company: its solitude is its salvation."

A true Scandinavian this one.
posted by three blind mice at 1:54 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm with Joe in Australia here. It was a very over-written article. Felt like 6000 words of sometimes very tangentially related (and often widely well-known) background with the last 400 words actually covering the topic at hand.
posted by rhymer at 2:00 AM on October 18, 2012


Not all writing, even on scientific topics, has to be concise; sometimes the trip is as much fun as the destination.
posted by maxwelton at 2:36 AM on October 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


I knew the bristle cones were old and I knew we'd "accidentally" cut the oldest tree down in the 60s but everything else in this article was new to me and quite well written IMO.

The part about trees standing until sheer erosion of the underlying rock brings them down was especially interesting.
posted by Mitheral at 6:31 AM on October 18, 2012


Song written by Hugh Prestwood. Michael Johnson's rendition is my favorite.
posted by mefireader at 7:53 AM on October 18, 2012


"In the end, the tree endures extreme environmental hardship so that it doesn’t have to endure company: its solitude is its salvation."

Unlike Plato's Olive Tree, which was hit by a goddamn bus.
posted by homunculus at 10:32 AM on October 18, 2012


And speaking of olive trees: Israel urged to protect West Bank olive trees after settler attacks
posted by homunculus at 10:39 AM on October 18, 2012


And speaking of claims about olive trees: New Video Shows Palestinians, Left Wing Activists Cutting Down Olive Trees

Which is true? Either? Neither? Both? I have no idea, but it's great that the UN and the Guardian have enough energy to focus on this, considering the other things going on in the region.
posted by Joe in Australia at 12:42 PM on October 18, 2012


Olive trees of Gethsemane among oldest in world - study
posted by homunculus at 10:33 PM on October 19, 2012


After the Rain, Harvesting Olives in the Holy Land

The People and The Olive
posted by homunculus at 10:38 PM on October 19, 2012


In climate puzzle for crops, ancient tree offers clues: On a windswept Swedish mountain, a 10,000-year-old spruce with a claim to be the world's oldest tree is getting a new lease of life thanks to global warming, even as many plants are struggling.
posted by homunculus at 10:44 PM on October 19, 2012


Read My Rings: The Oldest Living Tree Tells All
posted by homunculus at 12:17 PM on November 14, 2012


« Older "Why had I thought I’d be immune to being called a...  |  James Coyne, the former Govern... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments