Letter | Published:

Contraction of Trees caused by Cold


THE splitting of forest trees by frost is often ascribed to the same cause which bursts a pipe charged with water when the temperature falls below 32° F., namely, the expansion of the water on turning into ice. Botanists know that this is not so, but the splitting is owing to a contraction of the wood by frost, similar, but in a less degree, to what happens when the wood is dried. With the thaw the trees expand to their original dimensions. Evidence of such contractions and expansions is furnished by the measurements herewith.

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