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Cross section of cherry tree, Prunus

Cross section of cherry tree, Prunus

B720/0109

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Credit

ADAM HART-DAVIS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ADAM HART-DAVIS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Cherry tree. Cross-section through the trunk of a cherry tree (Prunus sp. ). The difference between the heart wood (light) and the sap wood (dark) is seen clearly. Sap wood is saturated with water and contains the living cells of the conducting tissue. After 10-15 years sap wood is converted into heart wood, which is a completely lifeless, dry tissue. The concentric rings here correspond to annual growth rings, a count of which would indicate the age of the tree. Cherry trees are often grown as ornamental trees in gardens. The fruits of some varieties are edible, the bitter varieties are used to flavour liquors.

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