Broad leaf conifer?

I really hate to post these shots that don’t do justice to this gorgeous tree, but I’m just so enthralled with this tree that I have to share.

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Again, walking the dog and looking around to see what I might find.  This tree is on NE 16th Avenue between Hancock and Tillamook Streets.

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I was stumped at first, but after a closer look I found it resembled coast redwood, Sequoia sempervirens.

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For comparison, foliage of the straight species is shown below.  Previous posts on the species are here, and here.

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I just could not stop admiring the lovely leaves, so broad they don’t resemble needles (not that there’s anything unlovely about needle leaves). Blue-green in color.  And with the tips gently curling back.

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The leaf form closely matches illustrations of this coast redwood cultivar, Sequoia sempervirens, in The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Trees by David More and John White (Princeton University Press): “Another good ornamental form is ‘Cantab’, a modern sport which occurred in the Cambridge University Botanic Gardens in 1977.  It has compact foliage, and at first appeared to be diminutive, but most specimens have actually grown quite tall.  A specimen in Kent for example has exceeded 14 m (1997).”  In the book, growth is indicated as 4-18-40, which is the height (in meters) at 10 years, 20 years, and eventually. By the way information is arranged in the book, I assume this refers to the species though, not necessarily the cultivar.  The tree I met is approximately 20 feet tall

There’s some confusing information on the Cantab cultivar, described in some sources as a dwarf or prostrate form.  In fact, Forestfarm sells a cultivar by this name with this description.  The Washington State University details here agree.

I can’t find much else about Cantab, but to see a nice image of a mature specimen and to read a little bit more, visit the JC Raulston Arboretum (NC State University) blog.

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3 Responses to Broad leaf conifer?

  1. Ricki Grady says:

    I have this, but am surprised to see it growing so tall. I thought it was a prostate form, though ours is beginning to send shoots upright.

  2. Pingback: sprig to twig » Blog Archive » Sequoia sempervirens procumbens, this week's fave

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