bristle cone7:30 p.m. – Online Zoom Presentation

California’s Bristlecone Pines: the World’s Oldest Trees

Guest Speaker: Jim Bishop

High in the White Mountains of eastern California grow some of the most remarkable and beautiful plants in the world: bristlecone pines. They endure extremes of cold, wind, and sunlight with relatively little precipitation, yet they have persisted in this place for millennia. Rightly considered the oldest trees known, they bear the longest-lived “leaves” but what does “longest lived” for a plant mean, anyway? This presentation will look at their natural history, the adaptations that let them survive here, at their longevity, and at changes that are taking place. Come enjoy their beauty and learn about the interesting ways of this unique tree.

For 14 summers, Jim Bishop and his wife Catie have spent time in the White Mountains doing alpine surveys among bristlecone trees. At the Crooked Creek Station of the White Mountain Research Center, they have met and learned from many researchers and students working on bristlecones, have been taken on hikes by wonderful local naturalists, and developed a love for these rugged and unusual trees.

Jim Bishop is a long-time CNPS member and active volunteer in the Mt. Lassen Chapter and served on the state CNPS Board of Directors and Chapter Council. His career has included geophysics, space weather, and wildland fire, with seasonal work after retirement in the Plumas National Forest. He has degrees in physics and geology, with further studies in atmospheric science, plant physiology and biochemistry.