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Plants: Species

Redwood: Coast Redwood Sequoia sempervirens


If you've ever traveled to Northern California's Muir Woods, you've certainly encountered the coast redwood Sequoia sempervirens, considered one of the tallest trees in the world and one of the Golden State's claims to fame. Mature, centuries-old individuals of these forest giants can reach heights of more than 350 feet, with fragrant foliage of light green to deep blue-green and those instantly recognizable red-brown trunks. The oldest coast redwood on record was counted by its rings to be 2,200 years old. These trees are thought to be named after Sequoyah (a.k.a. George Guess), the inventor and publisher of the Cherokee alphabet.

Coast redwoods share the spotlight and are often confused with the giant sequoia Sequoiadendron gigantea. Redwoods, both the Sequoia sp. and the Sequoiadendron sp., are California's state tree.