norway spruce

Planted 1941

Trunk circumference at coring height: 162 cm.

Tree rings are confirmed back to the early 50s as sometimes the corer couldn't reach the tree's centre. One of the interesting aspects of this art project is that trees still protect the secrets of their early lives.

The focus of the tree/human narrative is introduced species

Norway Spruce can grow over 60-90 cm per year their first 25 years under good conditions, in heavy or poor soils they may average 30cm per year. Soil, moisture, and adequate sunshine affect their growth rate. Due to their hardiness and adaptability they  have been introduced around the world and thrive where there is adequate rainfall of at least 65cm per year. 


This specific tree is healthy, but grew very slowly between 2002-10. It recovered in 2011 and has grown strongly since then. This spurt of growth may have been caused by the thinning of nearby trees.


Its sapwood dates back to 1992, and the heartwood is between 1992-1953, although the quality of the earlier heartwood has been deteriorating. It had some stress in 1976, due to the 3 month heat-wave, but hailing from a colder climate, it wasn’t affected by the very cold winter of 1962/3.

2014 I call Northampton home. I hear there's a campaign to conserve only native English trees.
As an immigrant, I object to this.