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Here you will be able to find out more about how dendrochronology, or tree-ring dating as it is more commonly called, works, how it can help you and how to contact us.
Each year a tree’s growth ring has two parts; one is wide and light colored, and the other is narrow and dark. This grows during the wet spring and early summer when the tree has a lot of sap, and the cambium cells giving rise to the trunk growth are large and thin walled.Because the width of tree rings varies with growing conditions, scientists also learn about local climate during the tree’s lifetime by comparing the rings’ different widths. For instance, higher rainfall and a longer growing season produces a wider ring than a year with low rainfall and prolonged cold. Douglass was among the first to notice that trees in a geographic area develop the same growth-ring patterns because they experience the same climatic conditions.Sampling for a major project of tree-ring dating in Devon is now complete and analysis is underway. In the meantime, sampling and analysis for a project in Wiltshire is about to commence - Robert Welcome to the Nottingham Tree-ring Dating Laboratory (NTRDL) web site.Most chronologies only go back a few centuries, but a few give longer ages than the Bible seems to allow, supposedly up to 10,000 years or so. Year-to-year variation in the width of rings records information about the growth conditions in the particular year.Insect infestation clearly manifests itself, as does disease or fire damage. Day length, amount of sunshine, water potential, nutrients, age of tree, temperature, rainfall, height above ground, and proximity to a branch all impact tree growth and tree ring production.However, some trees do not produce annual rings at all, especially those in temperate or tropical regions.Overlapping and correlating rings have been used to produce “chronologies” of past years.Tree-ring dating may only be performed on tree species that produce one growth ring per year, and do so in response to annual variations in precipitation (and in some cases temperature).Everything else being equal, in a wet year trees will produce a larger growth ring.Linear sequences of rings are obtained by cross-matching tree ring patterns from living trees and those from older dead wood.A well-known study involved bristlecone pine trees in California’s White Mountains, but others have employed oak trees in south Germany and pine trees from Northern Ireland.