These are the 10 oldest trees in the world, the wonderful natural historians of the planet.
Trees are perhaps the oldest beings on the planet, but the most surprising thing is that many of them have lived for long eons on this Earth. They are much more intelligent beings than is usually thought and have even been able to establish a society in which they help each other and communicate by employing electrical impulses that are sent underground.
Whoever observes an inanimate being where there is a tree, is making a serious mistake, because they keep the wisdom of the planet, and proof of this is the dendrology that studies what the rings in the trunks tell us about the past and the future of the planet. They have been the only observers of the changes that Mother Earth has experienced.
With this in mind, it is easier to appreciate the great importance they have in the development of terrestrial biomes as well as to marvel at these oldest living trees on the planet.
The Oldest Trees on the Planet
Gran Abuelo (Chile)
Scientific name Fitzroya cupressoides, the alerce trees are an imposing species of trees native to the Andes Mountains. They are known to be a very long-lived species, although unfortunately they have not been studied in depth, since many of them have been cut down. But in the middle of the Andean forests in South America, the Gran Abuelo, as the community usually calls this tree, was found. According to dendrologists, the old alerce, which has a trunk four meters thick, has an estimated age of 5,484 years, making it the oldest living tree found so far.
Methuselah (United States)
This ancient bristlecone pine was the oldest known organism on Earth until 2013. According to researchers, the tree is 4,854 years old and has an estimated planting date of 2,833 BC. The old Methuselah, which is still alive, is located in eastern California, although its exact location is a secret for visitors, to safeguard the integrity of the arboreal being.
Sarv-e Abarqu (Iran)
Also called ‘Zoroastrian Sarv,’ this is a cypress tree that lives in Yazd province, Iran, which probably makes it the oldest cypress tree in all of Asia. The cypress lives near human settlements and is currently protected. It’s considered an Iraqi national monument because of its estimated age of 4,000 years.
Llangernyw Yew (Wales)
Strangely, the Llangernyw Yew inhabits the middle of a graveyard, although it is carefully preserved. It is located at St. Dygain’s Church in the village of Llangernyw, North Wales, UK, where it is believed to have been planted 4,000 years ago in the Bronze Age. The most amazing thing about this yew tree is that it is still growing and has a lush canopy that is evidence of its age.
Patriarca de Floresta (Brazil)
Cariniana legalis is the scientific name of the species commonly known as Patriarca de Floresta. These trees grow in the forests of Brazil, Colombia, and Venezuela, although they aren’t many left. Fortunately, dendrologists managed to find a specimen of Patriarca de Floresta that lives in Brazil and is estimated to be 2,000 years old.
The Senator (United States)
Located in Longwood, Florida, the Senator was probably the largest tree in the entire United States until 2012, when it suffered a tragedy at the hands of a forest fire. It is a bald cypress considered the oldest of its species with an estimated age of 3,500 years. Its measurements became very large, 38 meters high and 5.3 meters in diameter in trunk thickness. Currently, clones of the great Senator are still preserved, and many believe that it is still alive, as small sprouts have begun to grow at its base.
Olive Tree of Vouves (Greece)
Olive trees are usually extremely resilient trees, as they can overcome extreme events; this is the reason why on the Greek island of Crete there are at least seven olive trees that are estimated to have lived between 2 thousand and 3 thousand years. But among all of them, the Olive Tree of Vouves is the oldest of them all. Although its exact age cannot be pinpointed, it is believed to be more than 3 thousand years old and the most surprising thing is that it still produces olives that are highly appreciated by the locals.
Jomon Sugi (Japan)
Its natural habitat is located in Yakushima, Japan, an island declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1993, for its rich biodiversity and precisely for being home to the oldest sugi in the region. Sugi is the name given to Japanese cedars, and among them, Jomon Sugi stands out for being 2,000 years old.
Hundred-Horse Chestnut (Italy)
Of all the oldest trees, this is perhaps the wildest because it is located only 8 kilometers from the crater of Etna, the impetuous volcano in Sicily, Italy. It is the largest and oldest known chestnut tree in this region, with an estimated age of between 2,000 and 4,000 years. Its name comes from a legend that says that a congregation of 100 knights was trapped under a strong thunderstorm, and the great chestnut tree gave shelter to all of them.
General Sherman (United States)
We couldn’t exclude the species of giant sequoias from the list of the oldest trees. These trees are powerful beings with great heights and impressive trunks. General Sherman is apparently the oldest of the sequoias, with an estimated age of 2,500 years. It has a height of 83 meters and a diameter of 7.7 meters, and it is thanks to this that it is the largest tree on record that is still alive in Redwood National Park, California.
Story originally published in Spanish in Ecoosfera