Height to Diameter Ratios

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dbhguru
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Height to Diameter Ratios

Post by dbhguru » Sat Sep 12, 2020 2:57 pm

Ents,

Today, I went across Broad Brook behind our house and measured a slender pignut hickory at 3.7 feet in girth and 112.1 feet in height. That's a height to diameter ratio of 95.2 to 1. Has anyone beat that for pignut hickory? That's still below my all time best of 110 to 1 for a butternut hickory.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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a_blooming_botanist
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Re: Height to Diameter Ratios

Post by a_blooming_botanist » Sat Sep 12, 2020 4:06 pm

Bob,

That’s a winner of a pignut that you’ve found! As great as it is to find a whopper of a tree that’s also tall, I’m equally impressed by the slender ones that reach superb heights.

The highest height:diameter ratio that I’ve witnessed on a pignut hickory is 116:1. This tree has a CBH of 3.12’ and stands 115.3’ tall. I call it Rocketship.

Jared

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dbhguru
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Re: Height to Diameter Ratios

Post by dbhguru » Sun Sep 13, 2020 5:44 pm

Ents,

Today Jared Lockwood and I explored more of what is call Bear Hill. It is the ridge on the west side of Broad Brook behind our house. After years of paying scant attention to the forest cover over on the other side, I've buckled down to explode all of it - tree by tree.

I needed Jared's assistance to measure trees. His knees are in a lot better shape than mine. He can cover territory quickly and spot the tops of trees much mote quickly, and he more than proved his worth today. On Saturday, I measured a tall pignut hickory: Girth = 5.85 feet, Height = 120.8 feet. But I wasn't confident that I'd located its top. Well, Jared did today and got 121.4 feet, beating a hickory farther up stream by 0.1 feet. That hickory, we named Miss Piggy. The new champ is named Ultra Oink. Jared also confirmed a new height champion sugar maple at 113.5 feet. Broad Brook's RHI-10 now stands at 118.3. While that is low relative to the honking sites that are being documented elsewhere throughout the eastern forest biome - Broad Brook's my backyard.

So far, we documented 28 species of trees in the Broad Brook corridor. There's probably 32 or 33 overall.

What is fascinating is that Broad Brook has suffered many human-caused indignities over the decades, but has rebounded pretty well. Here's the current Ruckers for 10 and 11 species.
Screen Shot 2020-09-13 at 6.21.39 PM.png

By autumn's end, I expect we'll raise the Rucker to between 118.8 and 119.2. Following Bryan's lead, I'll then turn to a larger region. Considering all of Northampton, at present, the RHI-10 is somewhere between 121 and 122. That is pretty high for a Massachusetts town. Then there is the whole Connecticut River Valley in Massachusetts.

So many trees. So little time.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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Lucas
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Re: Height to Diameter Ratios

Post by Lucas » Sat Sep 19, 2020 12:46 pm

Funny this came up. I was looking at two red spruce about 30 ft apart just outside my land. Gorgeous trees about 80 ft, I figure. Then I noticed a sugar maple between them. it was about 8 inches thick but the same height as the spruce. I was impressed.

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dbhguru
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Re: Height to Diameter Ratios

Post by dbhguru » Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:02 am

Lucas,

I have wondered about the significance of height to diameter ratios for a long time. In cases of trees that can grow fast and reach significant heights, I get it why some can scoot up there so fast when growing in competition with others. But I wonder about the range of factors governing such growth behavior. Any thoughts?

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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