conservation

What Do the Winter Olympics and Redwoods Have in Common?

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Well, they’re both part of a rapidly-changing world. It’s more than a little scary to watch the Winter Olympics this year and see the bare, snowless mountains in the background and the spectators in T-shirts lining the race courses. Scarier …

In 1926, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. discusses redwoods conservation with Save the Redwoods League leader Newton Drury. David Rockefeller is pictured on the front, right side.

Conservation, Then and Now

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For decades, the rallying cry of conservation has been, “Buy land — they’re not making any more of it!”  And since 1918, that’s what Save the Redwoods League has done: bought land to protect old-growth groves for future generations. Now, …

It’s part of my job to walk our conservation easement properties at least once a year to keep an eye on things.

Conservation Easements, Part 2: Monitoring and Enforcement

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Last month, I explained the nuts and bolts of conservation easements, a super important tool in land conservation and one that we at Save the Redwoods League use often. This month, you can learn about what happens next: monitoring and …

The Future of Redwood Conservation

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Much has been said about the importance of old-growth redwood forests. Their superlative beauty, their mind-bending longevity, their capacity to sequester carbon, and their ability to inspire peace, awe, and contemplation are all reasons why our commitment to their protection …

Conservation easements can permanently protect privately-owned properties like this one. Photo by Paolo Vescia.

What IS a Conservation Easement, Anyway?

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Conservation easements are an incredibly important tool we use to help protect land. They can be confusing to understand, so my next few blogs will focus on different aspects of conservation easements to explain the concept and show why land …

Critical Conservation at Strybing Botanical Garden

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Not many people know this, but I can trace my career as a redwood conservation scientist back to Strybing Botanical Garden in San Francisco. It was during a field trip to Strybing in 1998 that I sat and sketched plants …

League and parks staff visit the former site of the Orick Mill, 45 acres of concrete with a lot of potential. Photo by Paolo Vescia

Opportunity Comes in All Shapes and Sizes

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When thinking of redwood conservation, the mind doesn’t naturally jump to a vast expanse of pavement.  Save the Redwoods League is hoping to change that.  We have just acquired the Orick Mill property in Humboldt County that includes 45 acres …

Have you noticed that the League is featured in the WPA murals at the Beach Chalet? On the right is Jack Spring, general manager of the Parks and Rec Dept.

A Passion for Redwoods, a Commitment to Parks

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This year we mark the 70th anniversary of the death of John McLaren, one of America’s great park leaders. Born and raised in Scotland and trained as a horticulturalist, McLaren is responsible for much of the vision and construction of …

Shady Dell’s Smallest Wonder

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The Lost Coast is a destination for intrepid hikers who enjoy the rough and uninterrupted coastline of Mendocino County. If you’re one of them, I recommend you take some time looking underfoot next time you explore the wilderness to see …

A Redwood of a Blog: How the Giant Trees Grow

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RCCI’s nursery experiments and tree ring analyses are essential to understanding the past and future of the redwood forest, but it is the trees themselves that tell us about its present. By establishing 16 large plots in old-growth forests throughout …

Photo courtesy Save the Redwoods League

Revving Up Research

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Each year, we at the League are fortunate to be able to help shape and develop new knowledge about the redwood forest.  Through our research grants program, we sponsor several teams of scientists who are working to answer a wide …

Is Save the Redwoods League Going into the Railroad Business?

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Conservation work comes in all shapes and sizes. Protecting, restoring, and sharing the redwood forest with the public is a broad mission, and we look to achieve it through a diversity of efforts. Sometimes the League’s projects are as obvious as …

Building a City of Knowledge

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Sometimes when I tell people about new research the League has sponsored, like this recent study describing the links between forest condition and salamander populations in recovering redwood forests, I get a look that I know means, “That’s pretty neat, but …

In vitro culture of Aulacomnium turgidum regenerated from emergent Little Ice Age population beneath the Tear Drop Glacier, Sverdrup Pass, Ellesmere Island, Nunavut. Credit: Image courtesy of Catherine La Farge

The Toughest Plants in the World

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It’s not often that I hear about a creature more resilient than redwoods.  After all, they grow faster, live longer, and reproduce more prolifically than just about any other tree.  Be that as it may, some very small, unassuming creatures …

Pelican Recovery Brings Hope

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I grew up in Northern California and witnessed the inspiring recovery of an endangered species over the past few decades. As a frequent beach goer throughout my life, I remember it was unusual to see brown pelicans diving along the …

Giant redwood crowns loom over a canopy of lesser trees (Picea sitchensis, Tsuga heterophylla) in JSRSP. Photo by Stephen Sillett

Clone the best, forget the rest?

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People are cloning the world’s oldest redwoods. Archangel Ancient Tree Archive is planting their clones en masse around the world in an effort to create robust forests of the future. They say these ancient clones will reverse deforestation across the …

Aerial view of CEMEX Redwoods. Photo by William K. Matthias

Collaboration for Conservation

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Save the Redwoods League and our colleague land conservation organizations are tackling more sophisticated and more capital-intensive projects than ever before.  We have learned that we can do this better by collaborating. One of the League’s most exciting and successful …

Secret Life of Ferns

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Ferns are under-appreciated, despite the fact that as a group they have more than 12,000 species worldwide and their lineage is even older than the redwoods! Maybe I’m a fern nerd (well, no maybe about it actually), but I can’t …

Peters Creek Old-Growth Forest. Photo by Paolo Vescia

Obama’s Budget Calls for More Conservation Funding

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There was a bit of good conservation news coming from Washington, DC, last week. President Obama’s budget includes a substantial increase for Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) funding. The LWCF program has had a huge impact on land conservation …

We're trying a variety of restoration techniques at Mill Creek.

Sustainability or Resilience?

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Do you feel tension?  No, not emotional tension, the intellectual kind.  Does intellectual tension invigorate you?  It invigorates us at Save the Redwoods League.  There is a debate among conservationists:  should our goal be sustainability or resilience? At Save the …