What is crown shyness?

crown_shyness

“Crown shyness” is a real term that means the pattern a canopy of trees make against the sky.   They seem to avoid touching, which is responsible for the pattern.

One theory is this is due to branches rubbing against each other and then breaking off, leaving the jigsaw-puzzle like patterns.  Another theory is that the growing tips are sensitive to levels of light, and stop growing as they near the branch tips of other trees.

They’re better at maintaining good boundaries than humans are!

I never noticed tcrown shyness before, but now I’ll be looking for it whenever I walk in a forest or under a grove of tall trees.

crown_shyness2

Photos not taken by me.  Credit: unknown.

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About luckyotter

Recovering from BPD and C-PTSD due to narcissistic abuse from childhood. Married to a sociopath for 20 years. Proud INFJ, Enneagram type 4w5. Animal lover, music lover, cat mom, unapologetic geek, fan of the absurd, progressive Catholic, mom to 2, mental illness stigma activist, anti-Trumper. #RESISTANCE
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10 Responses to What is crown shyness?

  1. Momina says:

    Wow, this was pretty informative! I can’t believe I never noticed this before, but now I’ll make sure to look at tree canopies and notice crown shyness!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Super interesting! I’m going to look for this the next time I walk in the woods.

    This post is a nice break from the political news horrors that just about have me unable to breathe…

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Alice says:

    Fabulous photos of this phenomenon. 😉 I will stop to observe now too, looking for crown shyness… thank you for the post.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Cyranny says:

    Isn’t nature just amazing! Like wise, I’ll be paying closer attention to the tree tops next time I am in the forest!! Thank you for sharing that very interesting phenomenon!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I have never seen this and I have looked up often in the woods. I think the issue might be that when everything is in bloom there are different heights to the trees so the leaves of the lower ones hid this phenom taking place in the higher ones. That being said, I will be sure to look more closely next time I’m in the woods.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. happymustang says:

    I love those photos. They’re beautiful! I never heard of that!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. adamjasonp says:

    They are light-sensitive (more light, more growth), but I’ve also seen naturally broken branches (promoted by winds). Both theories can be true. 🙂 There’s also the fact that branching follows certain rules that produce fractal patterns…

    Liked by 1 person

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