Monday, June 30, 2014

A Puzzlement


This post will only interest the very nerdiest of my friends and family.
Those that are interested in all things out of doors.
And I do mean "all".
This post is about tree bark.

Yes, tree bark.

More precisely, the thickness of tree bark on a single tree.
I was certain I had bored you with a similar subject in a past post, but I can't find it.
It was about trees and tree growth and how they can lllleeeeeeaaaaannnnnnn, but not fall over.
It was about the fact that the bark was visibly thicker on one side of the tree than the other.

While we lost a couple very large trees in the storms a couple weeks ago, it gave me the opportunity to tune up my tree knowledge aka: nerdiness.

The question of "Is the bark really thicker on one side than the other or does it just look like it?" will finally be answered.

The answer is "Yes.  Yes, it is thicker on one side than the other".

I wanted to be really nerdy and share the "WHY is it thicker on one side or the other?", but my research on the subject would bore you to tears.

In a nutshell, it's structural.
  
It helps hold the tree up if it is leaning.  The tree tries really hard to grow straight up.  The bark is nature's way of pushing back against the direction the tree is leaning.
Heck, it keeps the tree from falling down.
Unless there's a giant wind, (which the weatherguessers say was "not tornadic in nature") that blows really hard and just snaps it in half.

 I know you've been waiting on the edge of your seat to see if the bark really is thicker on one side than the other.

Here's the proof.

One side.  
The thicker side.
Even thicker than the length of Eric's thumb.

The other side.
The not-thick side. 
(It's a biology term, I just know it is!)
Only about as thick as one joint in Eric's thumb. 
It's a scientifically accepted measurement, look it up!
Maybe it's biblical?
I don't think there was an Eric in the Old Testament.
Nevermind. 

Anyhoo, now you know.
If you are ever in a trivia game that asks, 

"Can the bark be thicker on one side of the tree than the other?"

You can say without hesitation,

"Yes. Yes it is!"

2 comments:

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  2. My internet has been acting up again so if this comment is repeated I apologize. Wow, I always wondered about that and now I know. Than you for enlightening me on the subject. Sure does explain how trees can lean and not fall over. I am ready to take on Trivial Pursuit.

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