Science of dating trees
Dating techniques are procedures used by scientists to determine the age of an object or a series of events.
The two main types of dating methods are relative and absolute.
"Early wood" is used in preference to "spring wood," as the latter term may not correspond to that time of year in climates where early wood is formed in the early summer (for example, Canada) or in autumn, as in some Mediterranean species.Adequate moisture and a long growing season result in a wide ring. Alternating poor and favorable conditions, such as mid summer droughts, can result in several rings forming in a given year.Trees from the same region will tend to develop the same patterns of ring widths for a given period.Visible rings result from the change in growth speed through the seasons of the year, thus, one ring usually marks the passage of one year in the life of the tree.The rings are more visible in temperate zones, where the seasons differ more markedly.
These age-old guardians have fascinated people around the world since time immemorial, but for people in modern times, there is a great deal of curiosity about accurately calculating the age of trees. Short Answer: The only guaranteed method is knowing when the tree was planted, but tree growth rings are also highly accurate – to a point – in determining the age of a tree.