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One-Thousand Year-Old Plants (nytimes.com)
74 points by SubiculumCode 52 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 20 comments



The honey fungus in Oregon is between 2,400 and 8,650 years old, and it also happens to be the world's largest organism, spanning 2,400 acres (965 hectares).[1]

[1] - https://www.iflscience.com/plants-and-animals/meet-worlds-la...


I personally think that clonal colonies should belong in a separate category. Whilst all the individuals are connected, can communicate and gave the same genetics it is possible to split it into many individuals which would be capable of life independent of the colony.

I'm also fairly sure that if other colonies were studied in more depth we could find some that are older and larger.

I'd be interested to find out how the original age of the colony is estimated.


There’s also quaking aspen that is older (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pando_(tree)). This article also lists clinal trees separately: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_oldest_trees


You can split up many plants in to individual pieces which will survive.


Right but I think a point could be made that would say that a claim that a clonal species has lived a long time, also claims that _everything_ alive now is basically the same individual. It's merely "cloned" itself from the very first cell 2 billion years ago.

Clearly that's not what we think.


Some of the roses that we culture currently were born in ancient times. They are basically immortal as long as we keep appreciating them.

The Rosa mundi, Rosa Gallica versicolor for example is a mutation that sprouted from a seed before 1581 where Holland was a part of Spain and before Britons started to colonize America. Is a creature relatively easy to find in the specialized market still.

Welwitschia mirabilis is a prehistoric unicorn that somehow managed to survive until today. There is not anything like that thing in the entire planet.


Along with some worms or starfish.


We took a detour from Swakopmund during a trip in Namibia to find some of these. If you knew nothing you would just think this is a weird plant in the middle of nowhere and wonder how it survives. Then again, the Namibian wilderness will frequently raise that question in your head.


If you're in California and enjoy this sort of thing, the Bristlecone pines near Mammoth Lakes are the oldest trees in the world. I'm not religious but to me, visiting them is almost sacred.


The bristlecones in Great Basin NP in Nevada are approximately the same age. The oldest tree in the world lived there until a guy cut it down in 1964, making the new oldest tree the one in California. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_oldest_trees


I haven’t seen the bristlecones but I get what you mean. I get the same feeling of sacredness when I visit old trees elsewhere like the redwoods, or when I see majestic large animals like whales (although they are much younger).



Would be a useful hn feature to show this link by default next to the original.


Doesn't seem to be a point in linking to articles that require an account to read.


Most of these paywalls can be circumvented - e.g. archive.is nearly always works; https://archive.is/BK9k6 was posted elsewhere in this thread


For something that’s a little more to look at than a two-leafed plant and less cheating the system than a clonal grove, there are multiple individual specimens of olive trees that are still (very slowly) growing and doing quite well for themselves in and around the Old City in Jerusalem that locals say are known to be well over two thousand years old.


in Afrikaans it is called "tweeblaarkanniedood", which means "twoleavescan'tdie".


Not just in remote deserts, I submitted 'Olive tree of Vouves' recently, just in a Greek village; estimates range from 2-4000 years old:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olive_tree_of_Vouves


They have a really nice one in the Berkeley Botoanical garden. It's a very mysterious plant. You can sometimes buy seed too but as you might imagine they will take a long time to grow.


I touched a 1500 year old olive tree in Antalya, Turkey. Almost a sacred experience.




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