Event Title

Session 2A: Effects of Fire and Climate on False Ring Formation in Oaks

Session Number

Session 2A: 1st Presentation

Advisor(s)

Dr. Christy Rollinson, The Morton Arboretum

Location

Auditorium

Start Date

26-4-2018 10:35 AM

End Date

26-4-2018 11:20 AM

Abstract

Trees have reliable growth patterns that are visible as annual rings. However, false rings, or irregularities in the transitions between the wood from the start and end of growing seasons, can form as a result of environmental anomalies. Although false rings deviate from normal growth rings, it has not yet been shown if they are detrimental to the development of the tree. Our primary focus was to determine if false ring formation is caused by fire or climate. Oak trees located in various plots within the Morton Arboretum’s East Woods were cored, the trees having been subjected to different environmental conditions such as frequency of fires. The occurrence and timing of these false rings were identified and compared against meteorological data and fire data using the computing program R. By finding a correlation between false ring timing and frequency and either frequency of burns or anomalies in climate, we can identify which one contributes more to false ring formation. Distinguishing between climate and burning can indicate whether human interference is making an impact on the growth of trees, changing the way forests are managed to prevent these deviations from regular growth.

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Apr 26th, 10:35 AM Apr 26th, 11:20 AM

Session 2A: Effects of Fire and Climate on False Ring Formation in Oaks

Auditorium

Trees have reliable growth patterns that are visible as annual rings. However, false rings, or irregularities in the transitions between the wood from the start and end of growing seasons, can form as a result of environmental anomalies. Although false rings deviate from normal growth rings, it has not yet been shown if they are detrimental to the development of the tree. Our primary focus was to determine if false ring formation is caused by fire or climate. Oak trees located in various plots within the Morton Arboretum’s East Woods were cored, the trees having been subjected to different environmental conditions such as frequency of fires. The occurrence and timing of these false rings were identified and compared against meteorological data and fire data using the computing program R. By finding a correlation between false ring timing and frequency and either frequency of burns or anomalies in climate, we can identify which one contributes more to false ring formation. Distinguishing between climate and burning can indicate whether human interference is making an impact on the growth of trees, changing the way forests are managed to prevent these deviations from regular growth.