From Ontario

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mhenry
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:22 am

From Ontario

Post by mhenry » Wed Mar 12, 2014 12:53 pm

I'm the lead author of Ontario's Old-Growth Forests. I'm more interested in age than size - probably because I'm from Ontario. I've seen a few one-thousand-year-old trees I could fit in a moving truck, though we certainly do have some large trees too - but most won't measure up to the larger US trees.

I'm heading to South Carolina for unrelated work, passing through North Carolina, Virginia etc. I would like to see some more southerly old growth, but can only spare a day or so. Can anyone suggest a top pick that's fairly accessible?

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jasonbaker
Posts: 33
Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 12:29 pm

Re: From Ontario

Post by jasonbaker » Wed Mar 12, 2014 3:44 pm

Welcome aboard! I don't have any suggestions for forests to visit in the south, but I'm sure there are some other board members that can offer some ideas.

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bbeduhn
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Joined: Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:23 pm

Re: From Ontario

Post by bbeduhn » Thu Mar 13, 2014 3:34 pm

In South Carolina, Congaree Nat'l Park, near Columbia. In North Carolina, Joyce Kilmer, far west NC, in the Smokies, Cataloochee or Greenbrier (in TN). These are all primeval forests, lacking chestnuts and hemlocks in NC and TN, but full of large trees and superb old growth.
Welcome to the board,
Brian

mhenry
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:22 am

Re: From Ontario

Post by mhenry » Sun Apr 06, 2014 3:54 am

Thanks. I visited Congaree and Cataloochee. Congaree was amazing. Cataloochee amazing and sad. I know Will Blozan worked hard to measure them, but have many of those dead hemlock giants been aged? They look to be some of the oldest I've ever seen, surely over 500 years? If it hasn't been done, it would be worth getting as many cores as possible while they're still solid.

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Will Blozan
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Re: From Ontario

Post by Will Blozan » Sun Apr 06, 2014 8:20 am

As far as I recall, the oldest hemlocks recorded in Cataloochee via coring is around 450 years. I and other NTS have cored hundreds in the valley. Stump counts to over 500 have been made by myself on trees felled for footbridges. I have no doubt there were multiple 500+ hemlocks in Cataloochee, perhaps even a 600 year tree. It probably would not be big though; the largest trees will seldom if ever be the oldest. In general, big trees get big from growing fast, not for a long time.

Will

mhenry
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Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:22 am

Re: From Ontario

Post by mhenry » Tue Apr 08, 2014 10:27 am

Yup that's for sure, I cored a 470-year-old hemlock that was 50 cm (well under 2 feet) diameter (actual ring count of 439 plus estimate). The age characteristics on the trees in Cataloochee are extreme though in my experience, low-taper, big branches, ent-like appearance in general. I tend to avoid excessive coring of live trees these days - but dead ones...
Good to know you've taken a sample of them, I'm surprised there weren't more found over 500.

I hate to think what will happen if adelgid moves far north, and with climate change it seems likely. It was worth seeing that as a warning, but I'm not sure what we do about it. I'm guessing that the relatively low commercial value of hemlock means few $$ going to research. Beech bark disease is moving through Ontario right now.

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Will Blozan
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Re: From Ontario

Post by Will Blozan » Tue Apr 08, 2014 6:05 pm

My personal record for the smallest 400 year old hemlock is 18.6 cm dbh... I had to use a dissecting microscope to count the rings. One section had over 80 rings per cm.

Patient little bugger... I have no doubt this tree could have been released from the shade and grown into a large tree for a few hundred more years. HWA nixed that possibility.

Will

John_09
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:48 am

Re: From Ontario

Post by John_09 » Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:54 am

Greeting from USA. I am glad to become member of this forum.

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