Towering trees teach sustainability: Water scarcity limits growth, enables survival

Recent research determines that the coniferous Douglas Fir grows only so tall before it runs out of water. Unable to pull water any higher, the tree begins to experience drought-like conditions. Growth ceases at about 350 feet — the same height as a 35-story tower.

“The foliage is struggling to get enough water and seems to be under drought stress. It’s not unusual to see periodic die-back at the tops of very tall Douglas-fir trees that are near their height limits,” explains Rick Meinzer, a Forest Service scientist at the Pacific Northwest Research Station. The same phenomenon may occur in the famed Redwoods.

Experiencing water shortages due to unchecked growth, cities such as Las Vegas and San Diego are also looking for ways to trunk-ate unrestrained water consumption habits.

Read more here.

Source: The Telegraph

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