False Heartwood  - False heartwood is protection wood.  False heartwood does not discolor because it is already discolored!  False heartwood is wood so depleted of elements essential for life that few organisms can grow in it.  False heartwood is often trunk wood associated with dying and symplastless branches.  As the symplast of the branches die, the trunk wood associated with the branches deplete their supply of elements, especially nitrogen-based molecules, that are essential for life.  False heartwood is wood altered to a higher protective state than sapwood as the symplast of branches die and are shed.  The wood in the trunk associated with the symplastless branches loses its energy reserves and nitrogen-based substances.  The moisture content also decreases.  False heartwood may or may not take on a change of color.  An example of a false heartwood forming tree is tulip poplar - Liriodendron tulipifera.  False heartwood was studied intensively in European beech. It was often called red heart. Red heart in beech and in birch often has different chemical characteristics. 

See "Heartwood".

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