What We Do
Turtle Island Restoration Network launched 10,000 Redwoods to provide individuals, schools, and businesses a direct way to engage in the climate change challenge through the simple act of planting trees to sequester carbon, and restore habitat where ancient redwood forests once grew.
Staff, interns and volunteers grow coast redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens) from locally collected seeds at our native plant nursery in Northern California.
Once collected, processed, and stratified, the seeds are ready for germination. Redwood seeds are planted at high density due to low germination rate (a mature tree can produce up to 100,000 seeds per year, but only one in twelve seeds are viable). Once germination has occurred, seedlings are always kept moist, shaded and at a temperature range of 45-70 degrees F.
Approximately three to four months after germination, seedlings will be transplanted into a tree pot that allows for long roots to form. The seedling will grow and develop a long root system for two to three years in our nursery before being planted out into land.
Once they develop a long root system our staff, interns, and volunteers plant the redwood and other native plants in carefully selected areas throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, an ecosystem that has been reduced by 95 percent due to development. After growing the base of its root system, a healthy redwood will grow 5 to 6 feet each year and can easily reach 150 feet within a person’s lifetime—about four times as tall as a telephone pole!
With your help, we’ve planted more than 500 redwood trees in the SF Bay Area! Here’s where:
Why It Matters
There are many aspects of redwood trees that make them the ideal icon for action on climate change.
Redwoods are fast growing, massive, long-lived, rot resistant, easy to cultivate, and awe-inspiring. They also store more carbon per hectare than any other tree on Earth. Coastal redwood trees sequester triple the above ground carbon of any other type of tree, making them a key player in mitigating climate change. We know carbon is stored in redwood trunks, but amazingly, soils and roots store even more!
Unfortunately, due to over-harvesting, only five percent of the original old-growth coast redwood trees remain, and they are listed as “endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The loss of coastal redwoods in California also impacts critically endangered coho salmon and other species.