Trees News -- ScienceDaily Read all about trees, including the latest research on many tree species, insect infestations, and the role of trees in ecology. Full articles, photos, free.

  • Europe's lost forests: Coverage has halved over 6,000 years
    on January 16, 2018 at 4:11 pm

    Research shows more than half of the forests across Europe have been lost over the past 6,000 years. […]

  • Between the lines: Tree rings hold clues about a river's past
    on January 10, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    By analyzing centuries-old tree rings, researchers are extracting data about monthly streamflow trends from periods long before the early 1900s when recorded observations began. […]

  • Dead trees are alive with fungi
    on January 9, 2018 at 4:24 pm

    So far, little research has been conducted on fungi that live on dead trees, although they are vital to the forest ecology by breaking down dead wood and completing the element cycle between plants and soil. Soil biologists have now discovered that the number of fungus species inhabiting dead trees is 12 times higher than previously thought. Once trees die they are also colonized by different fungal communities depending on their species. […]

  • Invasive tree species: Call for action to tackle threat to a global biodiversity hotspot
    on January 2, 2018 at 3:33 pm

    An invasive Australian tree is now posing a serious threat to a global diversity 'hotspot' in the natural forests of Jamaica's Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park. The tree species, Pittosporum undulatum, known locally as 'mock orange', is threatening many rare and endangered species, some of which are found nowhere else in the world. Scientists are urging the relevant institutions to prioritise a program of control of this species. […]

  • Charcoal remains could accelerate CO2 emissions after forest fires
    on December 28, 2017 at 3:09 pm

    Charcoal remains after a forest fire help decompose fine roots in the soil, potentially accelerating CO2 emissions in boreal forests. […]

  • Trees' spring awakening is becoming less and less sensitive to altitude differences
    on December 26, 2017 at 6:46 pm

    In the Swiss Alps, the time lag between leafing of trees at high and low altitudes has shortened dramatically since the 1960s due to climate warming. […]

  • North Atlantic Oscillation synchronizes tree reproduction across Europe
    on December 20, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    Research has found a strong correlation between the North Atlantic Oscillation and synchronized tree reproduction across Europe, supporting the idea that this phenomenon plays a greater role in large scale masting, the process whereby forest trees produce large numbers of seeds in the same year. […]

  • Promising new citrus varieties for greening tolerance
    on December 18, 2017 at 2:24 pm

    Grafted orange trees may give the Florida's citrus growers new reason to hope the industry can cope with the citrus greening crisis, researchers say. […]

  • Complex, old-growth forests may protect some bird species in a warming climate
    on December 15, 2017 at 6:51 pm

    Old forests that contain large trees and a diversity of tree sizes and species may offer refuge to some types of birds facing threats in a warming climate, scientists have found. […]

  • Forest resilience declines in face of wildfires, climate change
    on December 12, 2017 at 2:05 pm

    The forests you see today are not what you will see in the future. That's the overarching finding from a new study on the resilience of Rocky Mountain forests. […]

  • Decades-past logging still threatens spotted owls in national forests
    on December 6, 2017 at 7:16 pm

    Logging of the largest trees in the Sierra Nevada's national forests ended in the early 1990s after agreements were struck to protect species' habitat. But new research by ecologists shows that spotted owls, one of the iconic species logging restrictions were meant to protect, have continued to experience population declines in the forests. […]

  • Separated since the dinosaurs, bamboo-eating lemurs, pandas share common gut microbes
    on December 6, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    A new study finds that bamboo lemurs, giant pandas and red pandas share 48 gut microbes in common -- despite the fact that they are separated by millions of years of evolution. […]

  • 'Stressed out' cocoa trees could produce more flavorful chocolate
    on December 6, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    Most people agree that chocolate tastes great, but is there a way to make it taste even better? Perhaps, according to scientists who looked at different conditions that can put a strain on cocoa trees. They say that although the agricultural method used to grow cocoa trees doesn't matter that much, the specific weather conditions do.&nbs […]

  • New species discovered in Malaysian rainforest during unprecedented, top-to-bottom survey
    on December 6, 2017 at 3:01 pm

    This fall, the California Academy of Sciences partnered with The Habitat Penang Hill and colleagues to conduct a rainforest survey on Malaysia's island state of Penang. A 117-member team documented flora and fauna from the tops of trees to the dark reaches of caves and discovered several species previously unknown to science living just miles from a major metropolis. Survey results will contribute to this ancient rainforest's nomination as a UNESCO biosphere reserve. […]

  • Smaller branches pack the fastest, biggest fire-spreading punch
    on December 5, 2017 at 5:00 pm

    The diameter of the branches that are burning is the biggest single factor behind which ones will form embers the most quickly and how much fire-starting energy they'll pack, preliminary findings of a new study indicate. […]

  • Despite city tree benefits, California urban canopy cover per capita lowest in US
    on December 4, 2017 at 10:28 pm

    Trees in California communities are working overtime. From removing carbon dioxide and pollutants from the air, intercepting rainfall and increasing property values, California's 173.2 million city trees provide ecosystem services valued at $8.3 billion a year. However, according to a recent study, more benefits could be realized if the Golden State's urban forests didn't have the lowest canopy cover per capita in the nation. […]

  • Belowground fungal interactions with trees help explain non-native plant invasions
    on December 1, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    The invasion of nonnative plants above-ground is strongly related to what type of mycorrhizal fungi are dominant below-ground in forest ecosystems. […]

  • Humble sponges are our deepest ancestors: Dispute in evolutionary biology solved
    on November 30, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    New research has resolved evolutionary biology's most-heated debate, revealing it is the morphologically simple sponges, rather than the anatomically complex comb jellies, which represent the oldest lineage of living animals. […]

  • Long-term logging study demonstrates impacts on chimpanzees and gorillas (Republic of Congo)
    on November 27, 2017 at 3:59 pm

    Research has shown human disturbance can have detrimental effects on great ape populations but now there is new evidence showing how selective logging impacts chimpanzees and gorilla populations differently. […]

  • Mathematician's study of 'swarmalators' could direct future science
    on November 17, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    How does the Japanese tree frog figure into the latest work of a noted mathematician? As it turns out, quite prominently. Researchers used the curious mating ritual of male Japanese tree frogs as inspiration for their exploration of 'swarmalators' -- their term for systems in which both synchronization and swarming occur together. […]

  • Asthma attacks reduced in tree-lined urban neighborhoods
    on November 17, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    People living in polluted urban areas are far less likely to be admitted to hospital with asthma when there are lots of trees in their neighborhood, a new study has found. […]

  • European forests might not be realizing their full potential
    on November 17, 2017 at 1:58 pm

    European forest managers can have their cake and eat it, because according to a new study maximizing timber production in a forest does not necessarily have to come at a cost of reduced species diversity or the capacity to regulate climate change by the same forest. However most European forests fall well below their possible maximum levels of these three capacities. […]

  • Are petite poplars the future of biofuels? Studies say yes
    on November 15, 2017 at 7:15 pm

    Scientists are trying to make poplar a viable competitor in the biofuels market by testing the production of younger poplar trees that could be harvested more frequently — after only two or three years — instead of the usual 10- to 20-year cycle. […]

  • Pine and poplar wood improve sunlight-driven water purification
    on November 15, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    Engineers have found that porous types of wood from trees like poplar and pine can greatly increase the efficiency of water-to-steam conversion under sunlight. The findings could be used in a simple and inexpensive biodegradable device for water purification. […]

  • Eating regular variety of nuts associated with lower risk of heart disease
    on November 14, 2017 at 12:51 am

    People who regularly eat nuts, including peanuts, walnuts and tree nuts, have a lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease or coronary heart disease compared to people who never or almost never eat nuts, according to a new study. The study is the largest to date looking at frequency of nut consumption in relation to incident cardiovascular disease. […]

  • Geologists uncover Antarctica’s fossil forests
    on November 13, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    Prehistoric polar forests were built for survival, but were not hardy enough to live in ultra-high concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide. A geologist is studying the tree fossil record in Antarctica from a mass extinction 250 million years ago, looking for clues to how greenhouse gases affected plants -- then and now. […]

  • Poison-ivy an unlikely hero in warding off exotic invaders?
    on November 13, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    The invasive Japanese knotweed causes much more severe damage to floodplain forests along the Susquehanna River, Pennsylvania, USA, than previously thought. Furthermore, the researchers point to a key role for the often-maligned poison-ivy as a native species that can not only compete with knotweed but also help sustain the growth of new trees. […]

  • Urban trees are growing faster worldwide
    on November 13, 2017 at 4:10 pm

    Trees in metropolitan areas have been growing faster than trees in rural areas worldwide since the 1960s. This has been confirmed for the first time by a study on the impact of the urban heat island effect on tree growth. The analysis shows that the growth of urban trees has already been exposed to changing climatic conditions for longer, which is just beginning to happen for trees in rural areas. […]

  • Mapping functional diversity of forests with remote sensing
    on November 13, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    Productivity and stability of forest ecosystems strongly depend on the functional diversity of plant communities. Researchers have developed a new method to measure and map functional diversity of forests at different scales -- from individual trees to whole communities -- using remote sensing by aircraft. Their work paves the way for future airborne and satellite missions to monitor global plant functional diversity. […]

  • How to manage forest pests in the Anthropocene? Bring theory
    on November 13, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    A survivor's guide to why forests around the world are being impacted by invasive pests and what can be done about it in an era of overwhelming human activity and climate change. […]