COASTAL REDWOODS

Coastal Redwood at Powerscourt
At its home in CaliforniaThe Coastal Redwoods, although not quite as large in volume as the Giant or Mountain Redwoods of the Sierra Nevada mountains, are giants in height, being the tallest trees on Earth reaching up to 379 feet [115.5 metres].It also merits the term giant in the complexity of its structure, sending out many parallel secondary trunks, including secondary trunks from secondary trunks, known as iterations, and so on up to a record of 6 iterations. The coastal redwood pictured in the drawing opposite, the Terex Titan, shows something of this complexity, although its height is only 270 feet [82.3 metres]. 

In nature this redwood is confined to a narrow coastal belt that is mostly in California, where a combination of mild temperatures, high rainfall and coastal fog provides an environment, reinforced by the micro-climate created by the trees themselves, in which they can flourish. Should Climate Change alter this special local climate the coastal redwoods would be especially vulnerable.

 

Elsewhere

Although individual trees have been established in mild protected sites in Britain and Ireland, so far it is only in New Zealand that the coastal redwood flourishes in forests.

In Wales, there is a grove at Leighton, Montgomeryshire that is now about 150 years old.

 

For individual trees in Britain and Ireland wind can damage the upper leading shoots but in a grove like Giants Grove this should be much less of a problem.

 

Forestry Potential

The forestry potential of coastal redwoods is being very actively pursued in New Zealand but has yet to be established for Ireland. So this plantation within Giants Grove could provide an important source of Research information.


~ EXCERPT ~

…To be like these, straight, true and fine,
to make our world like theirs, a shrine;
Sink down, oh, traveler, on your knees,
God stands before you in these trees.