It’s getting hot out there! How do our trees deal with the heat?
Tuesday, July 3, 2018
Posted by: Dana Walker
Every year, I’m impressed by how trees handle standing outside in 90 to over 100 degree
weather, without being able to move and, while providing shade, often not getting much shade themselves. Of course trees have evolved in very different ways from humans. This article will talk about how trees deal with regular summer heat and the long-term aspects of how climate change will affect trees.
The Days of Summer
Just like humans, trees sweat out water. The process of evapotranspiration is how trees transport water through their roots, trunks, branches and eventually out of their leaves. This process brings nutrients and water to all parts of the tree, and essentially allows the tree to breathe. A large oak tree can transpire up to 40,000 gallons of water per year. This process is extremely useful in stormwater reduction, as it returns the moisture back to the atmosphere, instead of having it run off into our streets and streams.