Nugget of Knowledge: How to tell the age of a tree

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You'll have to know a little geometry and what kind of tree it is

(WYTV) – How can you tell how old a tree is?

You count the rings in the tree trunk but that means the tree has been cut down to expose the interior of the trunk. How about a living tree?

You’ll have to know a little geometry and what kind of tree it is.

Wrap a tape measure around the trunk at roughly shoulder height and write down the circumference. This height is called the DBH, or diameter at breast height.

Then divide the circumference by pi (3.14) and multiply it by the tree’s growth factor number. Use a Tree Age Calculator to find it. This is where you have to know what kind of tree you’re measuring — oak, maple, pine, whatever.

For example, say you have a red maple in your yard. You’ve measured it as 22 inches around. Divide those 22 inches by 3.14 and you get 7. Now multiply 7 times the red maple’s growth factor.

To get that, use this online Tree Age Calculator. The calculator tells you the red maple’s number is 4.5, multiplying 7 times 4.5 gives you 31.5. Your tree is 31-and-a-half years old.

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