top of page

4,855-Year-Old Tree May No Longer Be World's Oldest

Quote of the Week:

“No great discovery was ever made without a bold guess.” –Sir Isaac Newton

Fact of the Week:

Via Trees Atlanta. Credit: Mother Nature Network

The oldest tree in the world—in fact, the oldest single living thing on Earth—is a Great Basin Bristlecone Pine, dated to be 4,855 years old. The tree, nicknamed “Methuselah” for the longest-living person in the Bible, is somewhere in California; its exact location has not been disclosed by the U.S. Forest Department in order to protect the tree.

Bristlecone Pines grow at altitudes of 11,000 feet where little other vegetation grows and endure harsh conditions like high winds and freezing temperatures. Because of this, the trees grow extremely slowly, sometimes so much so that they do not add a ring after another year of life. The needles can live up to 30 years, and the trees can grow 50 feet tall with a diameter of 13 feet.

Methuselah was discovered by Dr. Edmund Schulman in 1957. The Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research at University of Arizona verified the age by drilling into the center of a tree and removing a tiny cylinder of the trunk. This produces a full count of the tree’s rings without having to chop the tree down to count them.

Reports have emerged that a tree in Chile may be over 5,000 years old, which would knock Methuselah from its title. The reports, however, have been met with skepticism. Instead of taking a full core sample, researchers used an increment borer to draw a narrow plug of wood from the tree, according to the LA Times. So for now, Methuselah remains officially the world's oldest living specimen.

USA Today and Trees Atlanta contributed to this article.

News Update:

Sixteen-year-old senior, Dennis Barnes, set a Guinness World Record by receiving over $10 million in combined scholarship offers. Barnes was accepted at over 185 schools, ultimately picking Cornell.

Barnes is graduating two years early from the International High School of New Orleans with a 4.98 GPA. He told CNN that he started applying to schools in August 2022 without the intent to set any records.

“As I applied to more schools, as my numbers went up, with the financial aid and acceptances into universities, I became intrigued,” he said, and when he got close to the record, he “just went for it.”

The previous Guinness World Record holder, 2019 high school graduate Normadie Cormier, set the record while at Lafayette high school after receiving $8.7 million in scholarships from more than 130 colleges.

Barnes plans to pursue a dual degree in computer science and criminal justice, and will officially graduate high school on May 24th.

CNN contributed to this article.

Sports Update:

Via Duke Chronicle. Credit: Courtesy of Nat LeDonne/Duke Athletics

Both the Men’s and Women’s NCAA Lacrosse tournaments have reached the quarterfinals, with the top three seeds alive on both sides.

In the men’s bracket, #1 Duke faces unseeded Michigan, which knocked off #8 Cornell 15-14. In the previous round, Duke trailed Delaware 8-4 before coming back to win 12-11. Number two Virginia plays #7 Georgetown, while #3 Notre Dame faces #6 John Hopkins. Defending champions #4 Maryland lost 16-15 to West Point, which will take on #5 Penn State.

On the women’s side, #1 Northwestern takes on #8 Loyola Maryland and #2 Syracuse plays #7 James Madison. Defending champions #4 UNC play #5 Denver, and #3 Boston College (last year’s finalists) play Notre Dame, which beat #6 Florida 16-15 in the previous round.

This week, instead of a riddle, we’ve included the link to the latest strip of Cliff Notes Comics. For the most accurate representation of college, there’s no better place:

68 views1 comment

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page