Rain and Wind Take Down Trees

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Rain and Wind Take Down Trees

Post  Marco Giai-Coletti on Thu Jul 19, 2012 1:12 pm

I found the following quite interesting. We recently had lots and lots and lots of rain with moderate wind, in the region of 40 - 60 km/h. Then came last weekend. Torrential downpours for two days solid and this time 80 km/h winds. Result: flooding around the city and many fallen trees. On my short 12 km journey to work on Monday, I counted eleven, very large, trees down between home and work. Now here's the interesting bit - they included 9 Pines and 2 Eucalyptus, neither of which are indigenous here. Further observation showed that not a single indigenous tree was blown over. Some only lost a few branches.

Perhaps someone, with more knowledge about the above two tree families, might be able to enlighten me.....?

Marco Giai-Coletti
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Re: Rain and Wind Take Down Trees

Post  Poink88 on Thu Jul 19, 2012 6:39 pm

How tall, big, and bushy are the local trees compared to the ones that fallen?
How wet/dry is the soil normally?
Is it sandy, loam, clay, rock?

Roots play 2 major roles; supply (water & nutrients) and stability. If the supply is plentiful around, it won't need to spread too far. If the tree is bushy and amplify that with height, it will be top heavy and easily toppled by wind.

I think pine roots are more flexible like rope which works well when anchored between rocks. Put it in sandy or loose soil and it will not provide the same stability compared to a tree with rigid root system (usually one with massive buttress and flare) which basically have spread legs to stabilize them.

Just my thoughts...not based on anything (since no one commented) Very Happy.

Poink88
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Re: Rain and Wind Take Down Trees

Post  Marco Giai-Coletti on Fri Jul 20, 2012 12:35 pm

Definitely what you say. The local trees are about 2/3 of the height of the alien ones and they have massive buttressing and surface roots. The soil is sandy and damp, which would cause a shallow root system, the locals have obviously evolved the buttressing to counteract that. Also, the local trees have spongey wood which makes them quite flexible.

Thanks for the reply Poink88!

Marco Giai-Coletti
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Re: Rain and Wind Take Down Trees

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