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The Oldest Living Tree on the Planet

Methuselah, White Mountain, California. photo source: Chao Yen

In our ecology, trees are one of the most important elements to be found. Trees are a necessary component of the environment’s ecosystem. They are essential to the operation of the Earth and provide a home for a diverse range of animals no matter where you go on the planet.

It is important to have trees because they provide shade and protection for both humans and animals. They also contribute to the conservation of energy and the delivery of oxygen to us. If trees did not exist, the world would be a dramatically different place than it is today.

Bristlecone Pine Forest of the White Mountains in California. photo source: commons.wikimedia.org

The World’s Oldest Living Tree

Methuselah, a 4,853-year-old Great Basin bristlecone pine tree in eastern California’s White Mountains, is the world’s oldest verified live tree as of 2021. It was discovered by Dr Edmund Schulman (USA) in 1957 and dated to be more than 4,800 years old from core samples. This age was later crossdated and validated by Tom Harlan in 2013 at the University of Arizona’s Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research.

The Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest. photo source: commons.wikimedia.org

Did You Know?

  • The tree has the name of Methuselah, the Biblical figure who lived to be 969 years old and was the oldest person ever recorded in the Bible.
  • Methuselah is the world’s oldest known living non-clonal individual tree.
  • Methuselah is the world’s oldest living thing and the oldest single living organism on the planet.
  • To safeguard the tree from vandalism and other man-made concerns, the exact location of Methuselah is kept a secret.
  • In 1987, the state of Nevada named the bristlecone pine as its official state tree.
  • Methuselah is believed to have germinated around 2833 BC, making it older than Giza’s Great Pyramid, which was completed in 2600 BC.

Sources:Wikipedia, Wikipedia, WikipediaGuinness World Records, Leaf & Limb

Written by James

A BSc in Computer Science graduate with a strong interest in encyclopedia facts. I'm a passionate content writer with 10+ years' experience and enjoys creating useful content that can help others.

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