Monday, March 22, 2010

The Oldest Trees on the Planet
Tia Ghose

While Pando isn’t technically the oldest individual tree, this clonal colony of Quaking Aspen in Utah is truly ancient. The 105-acre colony is made of genetically identical trees, called stems, connected by a single root system. The “trembling giant” got its start at least 80,000 years ago, when all of our human ancestors were still living in Africa. But some estimate the woodland could be as old as 1 million years, which would mean Pando predates the earliest Homo sapiens by 800,000 years. At 6,615 tons, Pando is also the heaviest living organism on earth.

image:“Clonal Quaking Aspens
(80,000 years old, Fish Lake, UT)
Rachel Sussman

via: Wired/wood s lot

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