Known as the California redwood, Séquoia sempervirent, or the Evergreen Sequoia, this tree belongs tothe Taxodiaceae family, of which several fossilised specimens have been found in Europe. Dating about 7 million years old, they prove that the evergreen sequoia, imported from the USA's Pacific Coast in modern times, actually lived in Europe several million years ago. In its natural habitat, the redwood can grow up to one metre in height per year. They are one of the tallest trees in the world and have good quality wood.
Because of their rapid growth and the qualities of their wood, redwoods are trees with great economic and ecological value. They like humid climates and have adapted to certain valleys in Brittany. Their wood is strong, rot-proof, and fire-resistant. In the large forests on the west coast of the United States where it often strikes, redwoods use lightning to their advantage to reproduce. Fire helps disperse the tree's seeds and enriches the soil by adding charred organic matter. These trees also multiply in shoots.
It's worth preserving this tree species which has been overexploited in the states of Oregon and California. These states are abundant with ferns and near-constant, thick mists. These trees need high humidity; capturing some of the water they need through their leaves. It's likely that they themselves contribute to the mist in which they thrive, thanks to the evapotranspiration system of their leaves.
Redwoods' current natural habitat is a long, narrow strip measuring 75 km wide by 750 km long, between northern California and Oregon. They sit between 0 and 900 metres above sea level, in valleys with rich, deep soil and abundant watering. They can withstand frost and high temperatures, but drought is fatal to them. This is why redwoods can grow in certain valleys in Brittany and western France that are regularly watered by rain.
The California redwood has excellent quality wood. It is fairly light, aesthetically pleasing, insect resistant, rot-proof, and fire-resistant, as it has no resin channels. In the United States, it was commonly used to make railway sleeper cars, thanks to being resistant to rot. It's used for outdoor furniture, but also for lumber and construction.
The Sierra Nevada Native Americans revered the Giant Sequoia as the pillar around which the world was created. Currently, the tallest tree in the world is a sequoia sempervirens , nicknamed Hyperion, which is more than 115 meters high. It's less than 600 years old, but this type of tree can live 2000 years. The sequoia is a symbol of longevity, power, strength, and energy. Have you ever made a tree gift ? Gift a sequoia to a loved one!