Author Archives: Emily Burns

Emily Burns, the League’s former Director of Science, led the research program that includes the Redwoods and Climate Change Initiative. She holds a PhD in Integrative Biology on the impacts of fog on coast redwood forest flora from the University of California, Berkeley.

Elk Clover. Photo by Keir Morse

A Healing Giant among Redwoods

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Meet a fascinating plant of redwood country: elk clover, also known as California spikenard (Aralia californica), is the only member of the ginseng family that is native to California.  It’s a perennial deciduous plant (meaning it sheds its leaves in Continued

Redwoods compete for sunlight.

The Olympic-like Competition among Redwoods

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There’s nothing quite like the image of five Olympic rings to remind me of good old competition! I love the excitement that builds up as the games begin, wondering who will reign supreme. Trees may not be aware of our Continued

Miner’s lettuce (Claytonia perfoliata)

The Hunger Greens

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Montia perfoliata The forest stretches out for miles all around you. You find a large redwood tree that has been hollowed out at the base by ancient fires to sleep in tonight so you can stay out of the wind Continued

Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park

Fifty Shades of Green

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Leaves rustle with the breeze all around you in the redwood forest. I’ve heard leaves called nature’s solar panels and they are the original and perhaps only truly green energy. They absorb carbon dioxide from the air and mix it Continued

Fires and humans shape redwood forests.

Impact of Humans on Forest Spans Thousands of Years

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Imagine being the first person to set foot inside the redwood forest. I can picture this visitor pushing through lush ferns as they gazed up at the towering trees. This brave explorer would have no trails to follow as they Continued

Lunularia cruciata

Meet a Tiny Wonder of the Forest

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I’m pleased to introduce you to this tiny cutie of the redwood forest: Lunularia cruciata! I can guarantee that you’ve been in this tiny plant’s presence in the redwood forest, but maybe just didn’t notice it. Lunularia is a liverwort, Continued