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Sequoiadendron giganteum

Giant Sequoia

Old trees of this species are said to be the largest living organisms on this planet, however, before you can stand under one of these massive, awe-inspiring giants of your own, unfortunately you would have to wait at least several hundred years. The good news is that Sequoiadendron is fast growing and even the young trees are very attractive, with a highly symmetrical, conical crown, and perhaps much better suited to gardens with limited space available. The giant sequoia is native to the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada in central California, between 900 and 2700 m (3000 and 8900 ft.), where sizable groves of it are found in a mixed coniferous forest with several other giant species. The oldest living trees have an age of just under 3000 years, a height of nearly 95 m (300 ft.) and a base diameter of 10 m (33 ft.). It is easy to grow from seed, which needs cold stratification for about a month, and suited to most temperate climates from USDA zones 6 to 8. The wood is highly rot-resistant and Sequoiadendron has potential as a commercial timber tree but is not frequently planted for this purpose. It is a very popular ornamental tree however.

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germination comments by our visitors
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Seeds from this species ...

... are easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Seeds don't have to be fresh, but germination rate is quite low, perhaps 15-25%, and some of the seedlings may die for various reasons. Place a number of seedlings on your moist soil and cover them with a very thin layer of soil (1-2 mm), spray them with water on a daily basis to keep them moist, but not too wet. Best if you can keep it all in a closed transparent container, for instance in a box covered with plastic. The tiny seedlings with 3-5 needles will appear after a few weeks, and you should continue to keep them moist by spraying them daily, but give them a little more air and light. Keep them away from direct heavy sunlight until they are more robust.
Submitted on 10/04/2013 by Ivan Norling

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plant cultivation comments by our visitors
Also see germination commnets above.

Plants from this species ...

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If you wish to read more on palm cultivation, we highly recommend Ornamental Palm Horticulture by Timothy K. Broschat and Alan W. Meerow, available in our bookshop.

Ratings and comments reflect individual experiences and the views of our visitors. They do not necessarily describe the most appropriate methods, nor are they necessarily valid for all seeds or plants of this species. Germination and plant cultivation success depends on many different factors; nevertheless, these experiences will hopefully aid you in your effort to get the best germination results from our seeds and the best growth results from your plants.

We recommend:
The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms
by Robert Lee Riffle, Paul Craft, Scott Zona

2nd edition
Completely revised and updated

Hardcover - 528 pages
11 x 8.5 inches

Our rating:
Suitable for: all

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is the definitive account of all palms that can be grown for ornamental and economic use. Palms are often underutilized as a result of their unfamiliarity—even to tropical gardeners. To help introduce these valuable plants to a new audience, the authors have exhaustively documented every genus in the palm family.
825 species are described in detail, including cold hardiness, water needs, height, and any special requirements. Generously illustrated with more than 900 photos, including photos of several palm species that have never before appeared in a general encyclopedia, The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is as valuable as an identification guide as it is a practical handbook. Interesting snippets of history, ethnobotany, and biology inform the text and make this a lively catalog of these remarkable plants.

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