UKTC Archive

RE: Estimating tree ages based on trunk diameter/girth

Subject: RE: Estimating tree ages based on trunk diameter/girth
From: Mark Mackworth-Praed
Date: Jan 12 2022 16:52:43
Yes indeed. And in the context of a review of old Area TPOs, should the 
question not so much be “Was this tree there when the Area TPO was made, or 
wasn’t it?”, but rather “Does this tree make a sufficient contribution to 
public amenity to justify its continuing protection, or doesn’t it?”
Other Gordian knots cut on request

Best wishes
Mark M-P

-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info <uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info> 
On Behalf Of Tim Moya
Sent: 12 January 2022 16:29
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: RE: Estimating tree ages based on trunk diameter/girth

And there's the Arboricultural Research and Information Note 137.97 (Tree age 
assessment) which demonstrates the variations we are dealing with. It's 296kb 
so I can't send it unless I break it down.

Tim Moya

Tim Moya 

-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info <uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info> 
On Behalf Of grumpy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.co.uk
Sent: 12 January 2022 14:23
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: RE: Estimating tree ages based on trunk diameter/girth

Nice graphs. Do these come from some data or someone's imagination? I'm 
impressed that they have not only managed to define the relationship up to 
1000 years but also imply (OK, only by about a mm) that the relationship 
heads beyond that. 

However, unless someone can tell me how I can tell an ideal site from an 
average site I note, for example, that a tree of girth 4 metres can vary 
between 150 and 250 years old. One with 8 metres girth between 500 and 800 
years old. Such variation is what we would expect, but I would expect some 
level of variation within a site too, so attempting to reduce variation by 
identifying a site "type" is erroneous too.

If this the level of precision you are interested in then fine, but it's not 
much use for an area order which is unlikely to be older than 70 years.

Jon

-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info <uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info> 
On Behalf Of Penlington, Robert
Sent: 12 January 2022 14:11
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: RE: Estimating tree ages based on trunk diameter/girth

Paul,
I’ll see if I can dig out a research paper for different species : ages 
illustrated through cone and line graphs to scan over for you.
Wokingham District’s VTA Oak line graph shown to pg4 to this link is the 
closest I’ve been able to find on-line  
https://www.wdvta.org.uk/pdf/Estimating-the-age-of-trees.pdf

Some figures from Windsor Gr Pk Oaks
[cid:image002.png@01D807BE.31071CC0]

Kind regards
Robert

From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info <uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info> 
On Behalf Of Paul Barton
Sent: 12 January 2022 08:56
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: Estimating tree ages based on trunk diameter/girth



Dear collective,

I wonder if you can help me?  I am looking for a simple method to estimate 
tree ages as part of a preliminary review of some area TPOs - i.e. to assess 
whether trees that are present now were most likely present (or not) on the 
year the area TPO was served.

I have come across various apps that claim to give an age based on trunk 
girth but after a brief test they seem to overestimate age (based on my 
experience only) as I suspect they are based on forestry plantation trees 
which tend to be more slender over time than open grown trees.

I came across this document from Newport council 
(https://www.newport.gov.uk/documents/Leisure-and-Tourism/Countryside/Measuring-Trees.pdf<https://www.newport.gov.uk/documents/Leisure-and-Tourism/Countryside/Measuring-Trees.pdf>)
 which suggests that tree growth rates could be split out in to slow, 
moderate and fast - each with a corresponding ‘average’ annual girth 
increase.  These are given as:

• Slow - 1.88 cm per year
• Average - 2.5 cm per year
• Fast - 3.13 cm per year

Using such values would allow me to classify species by growth rate category 
and therefore have a ready reckoner to estimate tree ages based on their 
girth.  It can never be claimed to be very accurate but for the purpose of 
quickly assessing hundreds of trees a repeatable documented method would be 
useful.

BUT I don’t know if the above growth rate values are based on good data, 
ideally in the UK.

Finally to the point (congratulations if you lasted this long)…can anyone 
point me to a reliable source of UK tree growth rate data so that I could 
verify or amend the above suggested rates of growth?

Kind regards,

Paul Barton

www.barton-hyett.co.uk<http://www.barton-hyett.co.uk> | Barton Hyett 
Associates Ltd | Arboricultural Experts





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To unsubscribe send mailto:uktc-unsubscribe@xxxxxx.tree-care.info

The UKTC forum is supported by Bosky Trees arboricultural consultancy and
Stockholm Tree Pits
https://www.stockholmtreepits.co.uk