New tall trees in Europe

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Jeroen Philippona
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Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:52 am

New tall trees in Europe

Post by Jeroen Philippona » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:46 pm

Recently some very tall broadleaf trees were reported from a few parks near Pau, a town in southwestern France at a French treewebsite. Most spectacular were a hybrid plane tree (Platanus x hispanica = hybrid between American sycamore (Pl. occidentalis) and oriental plane tree (Pl. orientalis) reported as 62.6 m (205.4 ft) and European beeches up to 53 m (173.9 ft). These would be world heightrecords. Also for several other species European height records were reported. We were very curious if these records were reliable. I mailed to the website and got the answere that the measurements were done with a Nikon Forestry Pro laser. After some time we got in contact with the measurer, Dominique Beziat.
He is a member now of the http://www.monumentaltrees.com website and wrote that he had measured with the 3-point routine, a Tangent method of this Nikon laser. He had information this was the best method of the instrument. I tried to explain him the difference between Sine method and Tangent method. This weekend at January 1 he started to measure the same trees with the SIne (2-point) method. The results were rather spectacular: the plane tree of 62.6 m with Sine method was 'only' 50.75 m (166.5 ft). This still is a world record for Platanus x hispanica, tallest till now was in England with 49.67 m (162.96 ft).
The beeches were up to 45.7 m (150 ft), a good height, but far from the tangent 53 m and no European record.
Mr. Beziat measured also several American tulip trees (Liriodendron tulipifera), wich are planted often in parks and on estates in Europe. One he had not measured with the 3 point method is the tallest tree he found in this region: with 52.5 m (172.2 ft) Sine method it is now the tallest tulip tree and apart from Eucalyptus also the tallest broadleaf tree measured in Europe! Another tulip tree he measured was 49.5 m (162.4 ft).
Most other species did not prove to be record heights, but a Atlas cedar (Cedrus atlantica) of 41.75 m (137 ft) is very near to the European record.
For an overview of his measurements and some comments see: http://www.monumentaltrees.com/en/discussion/#2499 and http://www.monumentaltrees.com/en/discussion/#2488 .

At this website we have height and girth record lists for Europe and also for many European countries.
The heightmeasurement database is rather reliable, as only Sine laser measurements and climbing with direct tape drop measurements are accepted. There are only a few tangent laser measurements still on this lists, but we try to remove these all from the databases. See: http://www.monumentaltrees.com/en/heightrecords/europe/.

In the top 20 are 5 Eucalyptus species measured in Portugal and Spain (nr 1,3, 4, 7 and 15 from the list), 8 conifer species from the USA Pacific Northwest (nr 2,5,6,9,10,13,14,17, alle measured in the UK), 5 native European conifer species (nr 8, 11,12,16 and 19; of 2 of these the measured heightrecords are outside their native area) and the 2 not native broadleaf species reported above (nr 18 and 20 of the list). The 5 tallest native broadleaf species are only nr. 22, 23, 25, 29 and 32 of this list.

Of course we still don't have reliable heightmeasurements in several parts of Europe. For example we don''t have measurements of Russia with the Caucasian mountains, were very tall trees heve been reptorted (Abies nordmanniana and Picea orientalis) but not reliable measured as far as we know.

Jeroen Philippona

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KoutaR
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by KoutaR » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:54 am

Jeroen Philippona wrote:There are only a few tangent laser measurements still on this lists, but we try to remove these all from the databases. See: http://www.monumentaltrees.com/en/heightrecords/europe/.
Within the top 30, I think the only tree probably measured with the tangent method is #27 Pinus pinaster. #30 has a wrong name (E. cunninghamii is a rather low shrub).

Kouta

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KoutaR
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by KoutaR » Sat Jan 07, 2017 8:42 am

There are also some height records that have not been added to monumentaltrees.com. Within top 30 there are at least:
- Carya illinoiensis - 48 m - Spain - measured during ECTF meeting 2014
- Pinus lambertiana - 49.13 m - Italy - http://www.superalberi.it/records/
- Thuja plicata - 48.4 m - Ireland - measured by A. Fennell

Perhaps you could add these trees, Jeroen?

Kouta

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dbhguru
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by dbhguru » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:09 pm

Jeroen and Kouta,

I was impressed with the tuliptree's European performance. As my time allows this winter, I'd like to begin adding significant trees that I've measured to Monumental Trees.

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

Jeroen Philippona
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Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:52 am

Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by Jeroen Philippona » Sun Jan 08, 2017 8:51 am

Bob,

Indeed the Tulip tree performance in southern Europe is very good! Like in the USA it grows taller in regions wih warm, sunny summers and milder winters. See this map: http://www.monumentaltrees.com/en/map/world-tuliptree/ .
In the menu at left on the map you have to change to 'heights (exact measurements)', were tangent and unknown methods are ruled out.

Records for some countries:
SW France 52.5 m
N.Italy 49.6 m
Belgium 46.4 m (exeptionally tall for the country)
W.Germany 40.5 m
Netherlands 37.6 m (several of 35 - 37.5 m)
England 37.5 m

Interesting that in my own region in the Netherlands record heights for common oak (Quercus robur) 41.8 m, European beech (Fagus sylvatica) 43.2 m and Northern red oak (Quercus rubra) 40.0 m are taller than of Tulip tree (37.5 m), wereas in SW France tulip tree is much taller in the estates were they now were measured reliable.

It would be nice if you will add some eastern US record trees to http://www.monumentaltrees.com . We added some Pacific NW record heights to this European made website, but it is better if the measurers themselves add them to it.

Jeroen

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dbhguru
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by dbhguru » Sun Jan 08, 2017 9:41 am

Jeroen and Kouta,

Yes, I will definitely begin adding eastern trees to monumentaltrees.com. I signed up years ago and fully intended to support your superb site. However, I got myself entangled in too many local environmental issues and projects and the American Forests champion tree program since 2013. That entanglement continues, but I am so impressed with your database that I want to follow through with the original plan. Better late than never.

The high growth rates for Liriodendron fall of here in Massachusetts at 42.5 degrees latitude, but rebound over in New York near the Great Lakes. Elijah as the tallest tuliptree at a latitude over 43 degrees near Lake Ontario. Very climate dependent just as you observe.

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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Rand
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by Rand » Sun Jan 08, 2017 8:38 pm

Random question for the European contingent. How many exotic tree species are invasive in Europe? I remember reading once that Red Oak (Q. Rubra) could be, but I wonder if there are any others?

(The biggies here being Ailanthus and Norway Maple)

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DougBidlack
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by DougBidlack » Sun Jan 08, 2017 9:34 pm

Rand,

the first North American species that comes to my mind is black locust. It seems every bit like Ailanthus or Norway Maple here.

Doug

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KoutaR
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by KoutaR » Mon Jan 09, 2017 3:20 am

I think black locust and ailanthus are the worst ones. In southern Europe they are just everywhere. Black locust is also used as forestry tree and many people don't even know it is an alien species. Black cherry is bad in western Europe but not where I live. Russian olive (Elaeagnus angustifolia) from Central Asia has widely naturalized in some regions in eastern Europe. Red oak is widely used as forestry tree (and also widely not known to be alien); it regenerates freely in the forests. In northern Europe (like Sweden and Finland) there are no bad invasive tree species yet but the situation will change with the climate change. Jeroen, which species are the worst in the west, like in Netherlands and in the British Isles?

"How many exotic tree species are invasive" - I don't know; depends also on the definition of "invasive". There are a few bad invasives and many others regenerate to some extent.

wisconsitom
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Re: New tall trees in Europe

Post by wisconsitom » Tue Jan 10, 2017 8:43 am

Seems like Ireland would be an ideal setting for a plantation of Thuja plicata. Something about the spring in their step some species sometimes get when moved around the globe...but to a suitable location....kinda like the situation with regards to Pinus contorta in Scandinavian countries, where it appears to perform better than it does back home in Canada. That kind of thing. More heresy, I know. I'm so caught up in the pleasures of planting and then watching young trees develop that I sometimes can't resist a non-native species or two! Like my hybrid larch-I'm in love with those things, and there's not a native gene in them.

Speaking of tall trees in Europe, I seem to recall reading about Abies nordmanniana as being the tree with the greatest height potential in Europe. Does that jibe with you guys?

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