Periodicity in tree rings from the Corn Belt

D. M. Meko, C. W. Stockton, T. J. Blasing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Previous tree-ring studies indicated that the total area affected by drought in the western United States has rhythmically expanded and contracted over the past 300 years, with a period near the 18.6-year lunar nodal and 22-year double-sunspot cycles. Recently collected tree-ring data from the U.S. Corn Belt for the years 1680 to 1980 were examinedfor evidence of either of these cycles on a regional scale. Spectral analysis indicated no periodicity in the eastern part of the Corn Belt, but a significant 18.33-year period in the western part. The period length changed from 17.60 to 20.95 years between the first 150 years and the last 151. High-resolution frequency analysis showed that the structure of the 18.33-year spectral peak was complex, with contributions from several frequencies near both the lunar nodal and double-sunspot periods. A t-test of difference of means in reconstructed annual precipitation weakly corroborated a previous finding of an association between drought area and the phase of the double-sunspot cycle. Both the high-resolution frequency analysis and the t-test results indicate that the periodic component of drought near 20 years is too weak and irregular to be of use in drought forecasting for the Corn Belt.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)381-384
Number of pages4
JournalScience
Volume229
Issue number4711
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Periodicity in tree rings from the Corn Belt'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this