World’s oldest tree discovered living in Sweden

The world’s oldest recorded tree is a 9,550 year old spruce in the Dalarna province of Sweden.

The spruce tree has shown to be a tenacious survivor that has endured by growing between erect trees and smaller bushes in pace with the dramatic climate changes over time.

For many years the spruce tree has been regarded as a relative newcomer in the Swedish mountain region.

”Our results have shown the complete opposite, that the spruce is one of the oldest known trees in the mountain range,” says Leif Kullman, Professor of Physical Geography at Umeå University.

A fascinating discovery was made under the crown of a spruce in Fulu Mountain in Dalarna. Scientists found four “generations” of spruce remains in the form of cones and wood produced from the highest grounds.

The discovery showed trees of 375, 5,660, 9,000 and 9,550 years old and everything displayed clear signs that they have the same genetic makeup as the trees above them. Since spruce trees can multiply with root penetrating braches, they can produce exact copies, or clones.

The tree now growing above the finding place and the wood pieces dating 9,550 years have the same genetic material. The actual has been tested by carbon-14 dating at a laboratory in Miami, Florida, USA.

Previously, pine trees in North America have been cited as the oldest at 4,000 to 5,000 years old.

In the Swedish mountains, from Lapland in the North to Dalarna in the South, scientists have found a cluster of around 20 spruces that are over 8,000 years old.

Although summers have been colder over the past 10,000 years, these trees have survived harsh weather conditions due to their ability to push out another trunk as the other one died.

”The average increase in temperature during the summers over the past hundred years has risen one degree in the mountain areas,” explains Leif Kullman.

Therefore, we can now see that these spruces have begun to straighten themselves out. There is also evidence that spruces are the species that can best give us insight about climate change.

The ability of spruces to survive harsh conditions also presents other questions for researchers.

Have the spruces actually migrated here during the Ice Age as seeds from the east 1,000 kilometres over the inland ice that that then covered Scandinavia? Do they really originate from the east, as taught in schools? “My research indicates that spruces have spent winters in places west or southwest of Norway where the climate was not as harsh in order to later quickly spread northerly along the ice-free coastal strip,” says Leif Kullman.

“In some way they have also successfully found their way to the Swedish mountains.”

14 COMMENTS

  1. if the roots don’t die and keep sending up new “trees” is it really an entirly new tree? Are roots part of a tree?

  2. I am glad to find out from the above rabble that nobody knows what they are doing. This is fantastic as those who record things and measure things should be put to absolute shame.

    There is no reason to not believe that dinosaurs walked with man, Lot got very ripped off with a shonky land deal, Moses was beaten up ( by god no less) whilst he was in tip top form and a stripling took on the might of the pelesh..But to know this drivel actually happened means measurements.

    And here in lies the crux of the matter. Its easy to be a selective Luddite because you need to have beliefs to do so. There will be many measurements of such organisms over the years and probably done with AMS Carbon-14 measurements. I am pretty sure that if a far less reliable technique (Comparative Ova temporal deliniation) gave you a silly answer, you’d lap it up.

    For goodness sakes.. the next thing you’ll be telling people is that subterranean carbon deposits cant have C14 in them some where..

  3. True it may be the oldest cloning tree….Yet it is not the same tree no matter it’s age…the pines in California are the same tree without and self cloning or reproduction through “rebirth” through base push or Root push.
    Let us Clarify “Oldest Living Tree” as a single tree that does not clone itself through barkbase push or root growth,for if this is true the louisiana Privet a natorious root cloner has never died and continues to prolificate through root push…
    Ok PEOPLES a TREE is a single organism that grows up and does not do base or root push…heck we got some cypresses that are 500-700 years old and they grow slow…LOL :o)

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