Dawn Redwood (Metasequoia glyptostroboides) in the snow, 2018

March 13, 2018

Dawn Redwood

Dawn Redwood (Metasequoia glyptostroboides) in the snow, 2018

Dawn Redwood 2018

Digital image.

Metasequoia glyptostroboides

Photograph by Larissa Glasser
Meadow Road, Arnold Arboretum, Jamaica Plain, MA
March 8, 2018

Sometimes catching a moment in our landscape is a matter of opportunity and timing. With the lingering morning snow still fresh, the only sign of human intervention was the well-plowed Meadow Road (thanks to our Grounds crew). Larissa had to go see how our standalone Dawn Redwood (Metasequoia glyptostroboides, 524-48*AA) was doing across from our Visitor Center. It’s already a big show-off, but the snow on its branches made it look all the more majestic.

Metasequoia glyptostroboides, popularly known in the west as the “dawn redwood” and in Chinese as shui-sha (water fir), was discovered in the Hupeh (Hubei) Province on the border of Szechuan (Sichuan) Province in west central China in the 1940s. The tree had been believed to have become extinct millions of years ago but that was found not to be the case. It has been reintroduced to the rest of China and elsewhere in Asia and introduced to temperate areas of the world, including the United States, Europe, and New Zealand. It has proven to be very hardy, fast growing and suitable for use as an urban planting.

You can read more about the Dawn Redwoods in our Living Collections in our Metasequoia glyptostroboides Records, 1940-2010 [pdf] from our Archival Collection.

Copyright © 2018, President and Fellows of Harvard College, Arnold Arboretum Archives; all rights reserved.

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