Infographic plots out world’s oldest trees
An infographic detailing the locations and ages of the world's oldest trees has surfaced on the web, demonstrating how ancient parts of our world really are.
Above is an infographic showing the location and age of some of the oldest living plants in the world. Graphic designer Michæl Paukner created the infographic which details some 20 of the oldest trees and clonal colonies. A clonal colony differs from an individual tree in that it is an interconnected super-organism of cloned plants, all connected via an enormous root system. Technically, such colonies are regarded as one organism, and due to their expansive size, they are excellently adapted for survival: The loss of a single "tree" in the colony is basically insignificant, so unless large parts of the colony are wiped out at once, it'll survive.
This is evidenced as the oldest tree in the list, the Trembling Giant, or Pando (Latin for 'I spread') has been determined to be at least 80,000 years old, though some estimates place it as high as a million years old. Pando is a clonal colony of a single male Quaking Aspen tree, and sits in southern Utah. The colony weighs in at around 6,000 metric tons, making it the heaviest living organism in the world. There is some debate of course, as to whether this is true – though one hasn't been found, if a clonal colony of just 7 Sequoia (redwood) trees were to be found, the record would be broken.
The oldest individual tree in the world, Old Tjikko is a Norwegian spruce tree growing in the mountainous Dalarna region of Sweden. Old Tjikko is 9550 years old, and spent much of it's lifetime in a bush-like state known as a Krummholz formation, due to the extreme conditions it was growing in. Due to the past century's warming weather though, the spruce has grown into a full grown tree, now standing about 5 meters tall.