Tall European trees

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James Parton
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by James Parton » Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:40 pm

Kouta,

It is nice to see some measurements out of Germany. European Beech is without doubt bigger than it's American cousin. Have you measured any European Chestnut?

James.
James E Parton
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edfrank
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by edfrank » Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:50 pm

Kouta and Jeroen,

I am very happy to see the participation of our two active European members in the new ENTS BBS. I am also pleased to see the list of measurements Jeroen has produced from Holland. If there are structural changes, additional categories, or topic heading needed on this BBS to encourage further participation by the European and British forestry community, I will try to make whatever changes are needed. I look forward to reading more posts.

Ed Frank

..
"I love science and it pains me to think that so many are terrified of the subject or feel that choosing science means you cannot also choose compassion, or the arts, or be awe by nature. Science is not meant to cure us of mystery, but to reinvent and revigorate it." by Robert M. Sapolsky

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dbhguru
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by dbhguru » Tue Mar 30, 2010 6:52 am

Jereon,

Fabulous post. Great information. I feel a deep sense of gratification and see that progress is being made. Yes, the Forestry 550 is designed to avoid the problems of clinometer and tape measure.

We are starting to see that Europe has some fabulous trees. Please keep measuring and reporting. This is ENTS at its best.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
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Jeroen Philippona
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by Jeroen Philippona » Tue Mar 30, 2010 7:29 am

James,

You asked Kouta about measuring European Chestnut, Castanea sativa. I have measured a lot of them, although not in really native forest stands, wich are in S.E. Europe. In the Netherlands it was introduced by the Romans, so not native but naturalised. The tallest measured here is 33,0 m (108 ft), in tall forest in Arnhem surrounded by European Beech up to 42,6 m (139,76 ft), European Larch up to 39,0 m (127,95 ft) and English Oak up to 37,5 m (123 ft). Normally in closed forest the height of Chestnuts is between 20 and 28 m, rarely above that. The largest in the Netherlands has a cbh of 850 cm (27,9 ft), the largest cbh of all trees in Holland. The largest Chestnuts are in the warmer Meditarranean countrees like Spain and Italy. Also in the western parts of France near the Atlantic and in the UK (were winters are very mild) there are very large (but not very tall) chestnuts. There are Chestnuts with cbh of 10 to 14 metre (33 to 46 ft), most of these are open grown with a height of about 15 to 25 m (50 - 80 ft).
largest European Chestnut in the UK-2
largest European Chestnut in the UK-2
largest European Chestnut in the UK-1 CBH 39 ft
largest European Chestnut in the UK-1 CBH 39 ft
The largest Chestnut of the UK has a height of 25 m (82 ft) and CBH of 12 m (39 ft). See two attached photos
European Chestnut CBH 34 ft
European Chestnut CBH 34 ft
and one of another Chestnut of CBH of 10,3 m (34 ft). Both are in Cowdray Park, West Sussex, England.

In Sicily, Italy, there are even larger Chestnuts, but while still alive their trunks have been rotting and falling apart in several pieces. Tallest in the UK is 35 m (114,8 ft). Even in the south European countrees I have never seen taller Chestnuts and I doubt if they ever reach 40 m.
So European Chestnut is amongst the largest trees in trunk-diameter in Europe, but not one of the taller species.
In Germany and more to the east there are fewer large Chestnuts because of the colder, more continental winters.

Jeroen

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KoutaR
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by KoutaR » Tue Mar 30, 2010 3:55 pm

Bob, Ed, James, Jeroen & Doug,

Bob, everything you wrote in the post #7 makes sense. I thing you are right.

Doug, you have studied the Kelheim forest well. I haven't been there and I have nothing to add. Contacting Mr. Waldherr is a good idea anyway.

Jeroen, I don't know Mr. Holeksa personally. I e-mailed him on saturday asking a comment (and also invited him to join ENTS), but he has not answered. I also placed a link to this site in the e-mail. So, he can read your suggestions. Like you, I haven't found any reliable listing of the tallest trees in Germany.

James, I haven't measured European Chestnuts. Like Jeroen, I bought a Nikon 550 last fall, but until now I have done only few measurements. Partly due to shortage of time, partly because I live in a region where there are very few old forests.

- Kouta

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KoutaR
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by KoutaR » Wed Mar 31, 2010 4:56 pm

Doug,

It would be a good idea to contact Mr. Waldherr and ask him as a guide, because the forest probably is allowed to enter only on trails. If there are not trails, entering may be totally prohibited. Btw, what a perfect name for a forestry head: Waldherr = forest master or forest lord!

I find this (besides language problems) a major obstacle to a European ENTS-like society where non-professionals would measure the champion trees of the European old forests: Generally, leaving trail in European old-growth remnants south from Baltic sea is prohibited unless you are doing an approved scientific research. Some reserves are allowed to enter only with a guided group, and some are even totally closed to the public. There is actually a profound difference in European and American way to protect nature: Europeans (and Asians) tend to block public outside the most valuable natural areas and to keep those areas in that way as untouched as possible. Americans (and Australians) try to make those areas still more valuable by letting public to enjoy them. I find the American way better. And it is not a thing of size: the vast zapovedniks of Russia are generally closed to public, and they are thousands of square kilometers.

- Kouta

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James Parton
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by James Parton » Wed Mar 31, 2010 5:36 pm

Jeroen.

Awesome chestnuts! They are huge! Our Live Oaks may be even second to these giants. Long ago our American Chestnuts were said to be giants but not anymore. I am glad European scientists were able to defeat the blight there. Hypovirulence worked like magic there.

Ed,

I would love to see Jeroen's part of this post w/photos included on the American Chestnut Project page. While they may not be eligible for the spreadsheet list, the post itself with photos would be a welcome addition to the Chestnut Project Page. It show how big a Castanea species can really get! Castanea Sativa to the best of my knowledge is the closest in appearance to Castanea Dentata.

James.
James E Parton
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Jeroen Philippona
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by Jeroen Philippona » Thu Apr 01, 2010 3:19 pm

James,

Indeed these chestnuts are big. The trunkvolume is perhaps larger than of the largest Live Oaks, but the branchvolume is probably less, although the 39 ft chestnut has a very large crown for the species. I suppose the total woodvolume will be over 85 cubic m (3000 cubic feet), perhaps around 4000, but I did not try a volume-measurement. Most chestnuts have smaller crowns, their branches often snap off while having less strong wood than Live Oaks.

The same with the European oaks, the largest have a larger trunkvolume than Quercus virginiana but less branchvolume.
Here two photos of a Sessile Oak (Quercus petraea) at Croft Castle, England. Bob van Pelt estimated its woodvolume as 3800 cubic feet while visiting the UK in 2006. See his report at the ENTS website in the pages on Europe. The height is 35 m (114,8 ft), cbh is 8,6 m (28,2 ft).

Jeroen
Attachments
CroftCastleWintereik420.jpg
CroftCastleWintereik361.jpg

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KoutaR
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by KoutaR » Fri Apr 02, 2010 8:34 am

An example of my last theme. North from Berlin, there is a small but old beech forest reserve, "Heilige Hallen". Many books say the tallest beeches of the reserve are 50 metres (164 ft) tall, but do not give the used method. Well, I started to plan a measuring trip to the Heilige Hallen today. I checked the www-site of the park only to read that entering to the reserve is not allowed anymore - not even on trails! The site says the tallest beeches are OVER 50 metres. Perhaps 50 metres is exaggerated, but how much? Maybe we will never know. The stand is in an end phase and the old beeches (up to over 350 years old) are dying. Perhaps they will lie on the ground, when German researchers will hear about sine method...

http://www.wald-mv.de/style-a2/heilige_ ... 68-75.html

- Kouta

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edfrank
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Re: Tall European trees

Post by edfrank » Fri Apr 02, 2010 11:45 am

Kouta,

Thanks for the report. I wish there was some way we could give people credentials that would help them deal with problems associated with areas being closed, or closed to all but accredited researchers. It certainly would be worthwhile to get some accurate measurements of these beeches, especially if they are slowly dieing.

My comments about the errors related to the tops not being over the base in a previous post were correct, but I did not mention an even bigger source of error. That is misidentifying what actually is the top of the tree. Often from the ground a forward pointing branch or other high appearing branch is misidentified as the top of the tree. This is an easy mistake to make and happens far more often than you might think, even to experienced measurers. Errors from misidentifying the top may exaggerate the top, not just by a few meters, but often by tens of meters.

This is a particularly prevalent problem in measurements of trees with broad crowns. With the laser rangefinder the distance to the branch can be measured and the branches can be scanned to determine which branch actually is the tallest. In general if there are several branches at or near the same inclination, the one that is the farthest distance is the tallest 'top' on the tree.

Ed Frank
"I love science and it pains me to think that so many are terrified of the subject or feel that choosing science means you cannot also choose compassion, or the arts, or be awe by nature. Science is not meant to cure us of mystery, but to reinvent and revigorate it." by Robert M. Sapolsky

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