Friday, August 19, 2011

World's Largest Trees

The General Sherman is a giant sequoia (Sequoiadendron giganteum) tree located in the Giant Forest of Sequoia National Park in Tulare County, California. The General Sherman tree is estimated to be over 2000 years old.

Giant Sequoias are one of the fastest growing trees - growing (on average) between one and two feet a year until they reach a maximum height of 200 to 300 feet when they start growing a bigger girth rather than gaining more height.

Giant Sequoia Trees require very special conditions to grow. Prolonged sub-zero weather is known to kill young trees and this explains why California's Sequoia Groves are not found above about 7,500 feet. Young Sequoia trees in particular need sustained soil moisture for survival. Many seedling Sequoia trees die in their first few years as a result of the dry summer conditions prevalent in California. Successful Sequoia Groves (of which there are only about 75) seem to have just the right moisture and temperature conditions for seedling Sequoia survival.

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