The Science of Old Trees [Video]

Here at Cold Stream Farm, we’re very interested in how our work can help to improve the environment and counteract the effects of pollution in neighborhoods across America. Shrubs, trees and various forms of plant life thrive off of the carbon given off by our cars, factories and more. The scientific world is always making advances in carbon research that shows us better ways to improve the environment by planting new life.

Recent discoveries about tree growth, however, have flipped an entire school of thought on what kind of trees absorb the most common. For years, scientists assumed that younger trees would obviously absorb the most carbon as these trees seem to grow at a faster rate than old specimens that are already a hundred feet tall or more.

However, as this article published by Smithsonian reports, older trees that have trunks of wider diameter tend to put on much more weight each year than skinnier, younger trees. No matter what species, if the tree has a trunk diameter of a meter or more, it will accumulate anywhere from 10 kilograms to 200 kilograms per year, easily three times the mass gained by a tree half as thick. The largest trees in the forest can put on 600 kilograms of mass per year, or even more.

All over the world, the results are the same. When trees are allowed to grow to their full maturation, which may take many human generations, they provide better benefits not just for ridding the air of carbon, but also for sheltering and feeding wildlife. Often these trees are removed to make way for agricultural or residential development, but we need to recognize the beneficial impacts of keeping trees around for a long life.

Not far from the eastern shores of Lake Michigan, Cold Stream Farm can provide whatever you need to build a wildlife habitat to live in perpetuity. Visit our growing fields in beautiful Free Soil, MI, or give us a call to learn more about our inventory.

*Video courtesy of Falcon Tvision