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Direction of tree growth

  1. Jul 22, 2015 #1

    hagar

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    When a tree grows even at an angle on a hill side it mostly remains vertical . What is at play here to cause the vertical direction of growth ?

    Thank you,

    Pat Hagar
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 22, 2015 #2
    I bet it is something simple, such as the influence of gravity.
     
  4. Jul 22, 2015 #3

    DaveC426913

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  5. Jul 22, 2015 #4
  6. Jul 22, 2015 #5
    And this shows that they may be able to grow wherever possible.
     
  7. Jul 22, 2015 #6

    hagar

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    Thanks to all for the information. The links were very informative. It would seem the behavior is controlled by both gravity and light however I have a difficult time considering gravity "simple", lol.

    Respectfully,

    Pat Hagar
     
  8. Jul 22, 2015 #7
    That is just odd. The guy must have been shining a flashlight down his throat to keep it lit. Is the guy so sure he didn't just swallow a bit of fir tree and thought it was a large bug?
     
  9. Jul 24, 2015 #8

    jim mcnamara

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    I did not see this thread until it 'diverged' from reality.

    Plants have a phototropic and a geotropic response mediated by plant hormones (auxins). In the absence of light (think germination in the soil) gravity dictates up and down for the plant. When light becomes available, it takes precendence to some extent over gravity. This is why plants under a single light source will grow toward the light -> at an angle producing more leaves and branches on the "lit" side.

    Severe environmental condtions also affect growth habit.

    Krumholz and flag trees are the effect of either/or salt spray and strong very cold prevailing wind direction. See the pictures here:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krummholz

    Trees in arctic conditions are often nanistic, where the tree branches die back to beneath the snow-level. So you see dwarf trees that have fat, very short branches with lots of dead wood above a foot or so. http://www.flora.dempstercountry.org/V.A.2.Salicaceae/Salix.arcti/Salix.arcti.pic5.jpg

    Witches broom is a disease condition of trees that affects tree growth - it looks like a bad hair day for the tree. The wood supporting some of these growths is called burl. It is prized for bowl turners. Causes vary but usually are related to insect vectors and environmental effects. http://www.missouribotanicalgarden....ests-and-problems/diseases/witches-broom.aspx
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2015
  10. Jul 24, 2015 #9

    DaveC426913

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    Maybe you have the answer to a mystery I found.

    Down near Point Pelee, on Lake Erie, there is a forest where a whole section of trees, most as much as a foot thick, whose trunks go straight up for about two feet, then veer 90 degrees to horizontal for another few feet, then turn vertical again. The deflections all point the same direction (I forget what compass heading).

    My best guess is a heavy snowfall bent them all over when they were mere shoots, but they would have had to hold them there for several seasons to be as long as they are.

    Ideas?
     
  11. Jul 24, 2015 #10

    jim mcnamara

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  12. Jul 24, 2015 #11

    hagar

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    Thanks again to all. This information adds a lot to what has already been posted.

    Respectfully,

    Pat Hagar
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2015
  13. Jul 24, 2015 #12
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