Dendrochronology (or tree-ring dating) is the scientific method of dating tree rings (also called growth rings) to the exact year they were formed. As well as dating them, this can give data for dendroclimatology, the study of climate and atmospheric conditions during different periods in history from wood.
What can you tell from tree rings?
These rings can tell us how old the tree is, and what the weather was like during each year of the trees life. The light-colored rings represent wood that grew in the spring and early summer, while the dark rings represent wood that grew in the late summer and fall.
What information can scientists obtain from tree rings?
The Short Answer: The characteristics of the rings inside a tree can tell scientists how old a tree is and what the weather conditions were like during each year of that trees life. Very old trees can offer clues about what the climate in an area was like long before measurements were recorded.