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Giant Sequoia

Sequoiadendron giganteum     Fr: Wellingtonia

 Sequoia photo sequoiaBig.jpg

First discovered in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California in 1841, the Giant Sequoia was introduced into Europe in 1853. This is the most massive tree in the world. It lives for over 3000 years and grows to over 80 m high, with a girth of 24 m. In Europe for less than 200 years, the Giant Sequoia reaches 50 m, with a girth of 7 m.

The stations of the Train des Pignes have picnic areas shaded by rows of large trees, often including the Giant Sequoia. This photo was taken at the St. André-les-Alps station.

Bark. The thick, soft, fibrous bark is reddish-brown and becomes fluted and darker with age; the base of the trunk is often buttressed.

Shape. Narrow and connical (compared to the broad, connical shape of the Atlas Cedar); the ends of the branches curve up.

Cones. 5-8 cm brown cones hang down from stalks at the ends of the branches.

Leaves. 4-7mm, blue-green or dark-green pointed scales, densely covering the branchlets.

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