Growth Increment - A "growth increment" is an increment of growth, either in elongation or girth, of dicot plants. Click here for dicot example. Or in elongation pertaining to monocots, which have only an apical meristem. However, as always in nature, there are exceptions. Some members of the monocots do have a type of secondary growth that expands their girth - Cordyline spp. History of term - At one time, when people examined tree samples they looked at the cross section only. They saw rings and called them yearly rings. Then a more, closer examination, of trees began to take place in 1959 when dissections of thousands of trees with a chain saw started A New Tree Biology. The chainsaw can be used as a scientific research instrument, if you know how to use it, along with a microscope. Now proper dissections in the longitudinal plane were done and people saw bars not rings. So then came the term yearly increments. However, it is believed that in some locations of the world, trees may have more than one growth increment a year. So now, the term "growth increment" will add least misunderstanding worldwide when used. But it is important to know how we got to where we are today, where we are at, and where we are going. Widths of growth increments decrease when trees are stressed.
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