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Greet the Ancients: 10 Oldest Trees in the World

by DrPrem Jagyasi

Trees that have withstood the ravages of time for thousands of years– those are the great ancients. These ancient trees have a special significance for us, as they are standing symbols of strength and steadfastness. Some of these ancients are lone standing trees and some are clonal trees. Most of these ancients are revered and all of them are protected by the governments of their countries. They inspire awe in us, and if they could speak, they would be the best narrators of the history of civilization. Standing tall for thousands of millennia, here is a list of the 10 oldest trees in the world, in ascending order:

 

  1. Shri Maha Bodhi Tree, 2302 years

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This tree is in Sri Lanka and is said to be one of the saplings from the Maha Bodhi tree in Bodh Gaya, sitting underneath which the Lord Buddha achieved enlightenment. This tree is oldest living tree which is human planted, and the date of planting is documented, which is 249 BC. The Bodhi tree holds a special significance for Buddhists and others all over the world, and is a revered pilgrimage site. 

  1. Grand Abuelo, 3645 years

The Grand Abuelo is situated in Alerce Costero Park, Los Rios, Chile. Grand Abuelo stands for “Great Grandfather”, is a Patagonian Cypress, known commonly as Alerce. These trees were used 13,000 years ago for tools and weapons. Heavy logging of these trees in the 19th – 20th centuries destroyed many of these ancient trees. Today, they are under protection from the government and logging these trees is illegal.

  1. Sarv-e-Abarque, 4000 years

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This ancient tree is another cypress located in the Yazd province of Iran and at 4,000 years old is the oldest tree in Asia. It is an Iranian National Treasure. It is also known as “Zoroastrian Sarv”.

  1. Methuselah, 4847 years

The Methuselah is a bristlecone pine was once thought to be the oldest non-clonal, lone standing tree in the world. It is located in Inyo County in California, US.

  1. Old Hara, 5065 years

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This tree was discovered to be the oldest lone standing tree in the world surpassing Methusaleh, as it is 500 years older. Old Hara is also a great basin pine (bristlecone).

  1. Old Huon, 3,000 -10,000 years

Old Huon is a clonal tree in Mount Read, Tasmania. Some individual trees are 3,000 years old and the clonal grove has existed for more than 10,000 years. This clonal grove of trees in Australia is another awe-inspiring ancient tree.

  1. Old Tjikko, 9,550 years

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Old Tjikko is a Norway Spruce found in Fulufjället National Park, in Dalarna, Sweden. It is 9,550 years old and is the same age as another Norwegian Spruce known as Old Rasmus. Old Tjikko was named after one of dogs that were associated with the research team researching the age of the trees.

  1. Old Jurupa, 13,000 years

Old Jurupa is a clonal oak tree in California, US. The grove of oak trees composes one organism and initially researchers thought it was a grove of individual trees. When they observed closely, they noticed that the trees did not produce acorns which were fertile, so they deduced that it had to be a clonal tree. The age of the grove of these clonal trees turned out to be 13,000 years, making it the second among the ancients.

  1. Pando, 80,000 – 1,000,000 years

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Pando is a clonal tree which, or a quaking aspen grove is located in Fishlake Forest Utah, US, which is classified as a national treasure. The grove spans 107 acres and has more than 47,000 stems. The weight of this ancient is more than 6,000 tons, which makes it the heaviest and oldest tree in the world.

The ancient trees of the world are fascinating. These trees have experienced the different seasons and climates over thousands of years and have witnessed many human civilizations begin and perish.

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