This Woman Has Spent The Last 14 Years Photographing The World’s Oldest Trees


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Categories: Nature
San Francisco-based photographer Beth Moon has spent the last 14 years in search of the world’s oldest trees. In the most remote and obscure locations she has uncovered the most spectacular trees, many of which appear old enough to hold long buried secrets of the world.

In her artist statement Beth writes, “Standing as the earth’s largest and oldest living monuments, I believe these symbolic trees will take on a greater significance, especially at a time when our focus is directed at finding better ways to live with the environment.”

Take a peak at some of the most amazing and oldest trees Beth encountered throughout her 14-year journey.

Beth decides which trees to photograph using a few different criteria. One, the tree must be old. Two, it must be immense in size. Or three, it must contain some significant history.

Before venturing to a certain location, Beth does her research uncovering the history of the spot. Research tools she uses include, botanical books, history books, tree registers, newspaper articles, and word of mouth through friends or other travelers she encounters.

Dr. Jane Goodall writes of Beth’s “Portraits of Time” photographs, “I want my grandchildren – and theirs – to know the wonder of such trees in life and not only from photographs of things long gone. Beth’s portraits will surely inspire many to help those working to save these magnificent trees.”

It is so important that we fight to protect the old trees that still stand tall, they are the only living thing that remains of the distant past. Sadly, many trees are in grave danger of destruction, including some of the oldest in existence. If we lose these trees we threaten our own existence, as well as the memories of the past.

Until 2013, a Great Basin bristlecone pine named Methuselah was the oldest tree on earth at a whopping 4,845-years-old. Methuselah stands tall in the White Mountains of California, but no longer is it regarded as the oldest tree on the block, let alone world.

In 2013, researches uncovered a different tree, also growing in the White Mountains, dating back even older at 5,062-years-old. The next oldest tree is regarded as a national monument and is located in Abarkuh, Yazd Province, Iran. This tree, known as the Zoroastrian Sarv, is approximately 4,000-years-old and is a Mediterranean cypress. Amazingly, it is possibly be the oldest living thing in all of Asia.

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