Looking up the trunk of a giant sequoia

Giant sequoia

In terms of volume, giant sequoias may be the largest living things on the planet. These wonders of the natural world can reach almost 100 metres in height with a trunk 11 metres in diameter. It takes 20 years for a giant sequoia to mature and produce cones. Each cone contains hundreds of winged seeds that can be dispersed far and wide by wind, insects and animals. Fire plays an important role in the ecology of giant sequoia trees. It clears away the competition and improves soil for seed germination. The loose fibres that make up the sequoia's extremely thick bark is fire resistant. Giant sequoias only grow naturally in the groves of the Sierra Nevada mountain range of California, USA.

Scientific name: Sequoiadendron

Rank: Genus

Common names:

  • Sierra redwood,
  • Sierran redwood,
  • Wellingtonia

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Distribution

The Giant sequoia can be found in a number of locations including: North America. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.

Habitats

The following habitats are found across the Giant sequoia distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.

Coniferous forest Coniferous forest
The coniferous forests of temperate regions undergo warm summers and cool winters, unlike their tropical counterparts. The species aren't exclusively conifers, there are usually a few broadleaf varieties too.

Behaviours

Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

Classification

  1. Life
  2. Plants
  3. Conifers
  4. Pinopsida
  5. Modern conifers
  6. Cupressaceae
  7. Giant sequoia

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