UKTC Archive

ring widths in stem and branch framework of broadleaves - constant, or proportional?

Subject: ring widths in stem and branch framework of broadleaves - constant, or proportional?
From: Rupert Baker
Date: Apr 09 2020 07:39:54
Dear Collective,

A question: is there a relationship between the width of the rings at the
base of a (broadleaved) tree, and those in the main framework branches
(obviously there will be deviation, eg when an epicormic branch develops, or
after pruning/limb-loss, where a branch develops more quickly to fill a
gap); but in the case of an idealised tree growing in steady conditions.

I can think of two sets of theoretical arguments - one the one hand, as the
volume of a ring increases as the square of its diameter, then you could
argue that rings on branches need to be thicker than those of the stem, to
carry the same proportion of water up the xylem; on the other hand the
overall shape of a tree suggests a proportionality based on age, so a
constant ring thickness. Or thirdly, do the rings on branches decrease in
size proportional to the branch diameter?

I'm ashamed to say that, having felled and snedded-out and broken down many
trees over the years, I've never bothered to look to see how the ring widths
vary from top to bottom.

Atb

Rupert




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