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Redwoods in my Neighborhood

Updated: Feb 13, 2021

Through our new virtual programming series, Nature in your Neighborhood, we challenged volunteers to go out into their neighborhoods or backyards to see what plants sparked their interest. Whether plants are native or non native, we can all appreciate a connection to nature and the curiosity that it can spark!

By: Angela and Charles Liang

The redwood tree is the world’s tallest tree. Many redwood trees can grow to more than 300 feet tall, and more than 30 feet wide at the base. Redwood trees grow in foggy areas near the Pacific coast in Oregon and California. Redwood trees may live more than 1,500 years. However, it takes a redwood tree 400 to 500 years to reach maturity.

The redwood tree has a huge trunk. The trunk has no branches for the first 100 feet from ground. This is because as a redwood ages, the lower limbs fall down. Redwood barks can be more than 12 inches thick. It can resist disease, parasites, and even fire.

The redwood forest is a rich ecosystem. Many plants, animals, and insects live in the redwood forest. However, redwood trees are endangered. In the age of the dinosaurs, millions of years ago, the Earth was warm and humid. Redwood trees grew over much of the planet. Earth’s climate has changed many times since then, and human activities also changed the habitat of the redwoods. Today, of the old-growth redwood forest, only 5% remains. Redwood timber is valuable, and people use it to make furniture, shingles, and fence posts. Excessive demand for the lumber resulted in the destruction of many of the original redwood forests.

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