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Re: St. Augustine, the Old Senator, May 2012

There is an old ''rule of thumb' in the UK for estimating the age of open-grown native broadleaves which are not juvenile or senescent: the age is roughly equivalent to the girth in inches. So assuming that a native oak in the US, even in a sub-tropical zone [which isn't necessarily more productive of growth than a temperate climate], will be more or less similar, then a 20' girth would be about 240 years and a 33' girth very nearly 400. There is a Forestry Commission Information Note ''Estimating the age of large and veteran trees in Britain'' by John White, which gives a more complex calculation method based on the annual incremental area of wood laid down in each ring by a fully functioning canopy, with variations calculable for decline in over-maturity and retrenchment and according to the history of the site and environmental conditions for the trees growth, which may have some application to veteran trees in the US. It has the advantage of being non-invasive.
by anthony.j.mills
Thu Jun 07, 2012 8:24 pm
 
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