Growing Giant Redwoods


The giant redwood forests of coastal California are famous for housing some of the most ancient creatures on earth. General Sherman, one of the largest redwoods ever known, is believed to be over 2,000 years old and the height of a 26-story building. Many giant redwoods have witnessed the rise and fall of civilizations while still standing strong. These giant trees, however, come from the tiniest seeds. With the proper care, you can grow your own giant redwood. Just be sure you have adequate room for this giant tree to spread out.

Step 1

Collect redwood cones. Look for unopened cones in December or January, and allow them to dry until the scales open up and expose the seeds.

Step 2

Plant seeds in a shallow container. Once open, remove the seeds from the cone and plant shallowly in a peat or cardboard pot. Plant 20 to 25 seeds at a time.

Step 3

Seal the pot in a plastic bag with a rubber band or a twist tie.

Step 4

Place the pot in a moist, cool location with indirect light. Do not allow the soil to dry out, but be careful not to overwater.

Step 5

Repot young plants. After the seedlings grow a few inches tall, plant the entire pot into a larger container and add more potting soil.

Step 6

Place the seedlings near a shaded window or in a greenhouse with indirect light.

Step 7

Water your young plants, making sure the soil is well-draining. To keep humidity high, mist the leaves with water on a daily basis.

Step 8

Transplant your young redwoods outside. After a year of growth, young redwoods are usually ready to be planted outdoors. Keep their roots moist and plant them in spacious areas 30 to 40 feet apart.

Tips and Warnings

  • Many of your seeds will not grow, as the germination rate for redwoods is only about 5 percent. Water your redwood seedlings sparingly. Overwatering is the main cause of death.

Things You'll Need

  • Peat or cardboard pot
  • Water
  • Plastic bag
  • Rubber band or twist tie
  • Potting soil


  • The Giant Sequoia: Forest Masterpiece
  • Redwood World: Growing Your Own Giant Redwood
  • How to Grow Your Own Redwood Tree
Keywords: giant redwood tree, grow redwoods, plant redwoods

About this Author

Kelsey Erin Shipman has worked as a travel writer, poet, journalist and award-winning photographer since 2004. She is a featured poet on NYC public radio, is the winner of the San Jacinto & Alethean Literary Societies' Poetry Award, and has authored three collections of poetry including "cold days," "bastante" and "short poems." She earned a B.A. in philosophy from Southwestern University.