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Love Tree Puzzler

When I heard the puzzler stating that trees grow from the top only, I thought it must be bogus as I’d seen this picture of the tree that ate a bicycle. http://www.snopes.com/photos/natural/bicycle.asp The story about its being chained to the tree before WWI turns out to be bogus, but why is it a dozen feet up? Did some prankster attach it to the tree which has now grown around the nail, rope, or whatever was used?

Must have. Put a nail in a tree 5’ off the ground, come back in 20 years and (if it’s still visible) it’ll be 5’ off the ground.

It isn’t that simple. Trees grow out from the core, but also up from the ground. A tree can and will raise objects. Initials carved in a young tree 3’ off the ground today will be well above 3’ 20 years from now.

I don’t think so. The wood of the tree is not living and growing (only the inner bark is), so it’s stationary. So the wood developed in year one can’t ‘grow’ upwards, it’ll be at the same place 10 years later.

There are two types of cells that grow in a tree, apical meristems (at the tips of branches and roots) and lateral meristems (along the length of the trunk, stems and roots). So there is nothing along the trunk of a tree that makes it longer, only thicker.

Here are a number of examples of trees growing around objects and except for the bike, only two seem to have been lifted slightly. http://www.nowthatsnifty.com/2010/02/22-trees-growing-around-objects.html#.T6dd1t1j2sE

In looking at the photos it appears to me that the parkbench, headstone, brown rock, metal tub, and child’s bike have all been lifted by their respective trees.

Perhaps it depends on the type of tree.