Giant Sequoia tree - Sequoiadendron giganteum

This tree (above) is one of six Portland, Oregon Heritage trees of the Giant Sequoia species. It is located on the campus of Western Seminary at 55th and Hawthorne in Southeast Portland. It is over 100 feet tall and has a trunk circumference of 22 feet. In the nearby area around Mt. Tabor there are many more large specimens of the Giant Sequoia tree, some of which are also listed as Portland Heritage trees. They are not difficult to spot as they usually stand quite a bit taller than the trees around them. The ones that are easily accessible try the area around the water reservoirs on the west side of Mt. Tabor park.

The image above shows the “cone” of the Giant Sequoia tree both as a green cone and also what it looks like when it is dried out and falls to the ground. These cones are about 2 inches or 5-6 cm in length.
The leaves of the Giant Sequoia are similar to those of the Western Red Cedar but are thicker and have pointy ends as can be seen in the pictures below. The younger specimens of this tree species usually have a uniform conical shape with branches all the way down to the base of the tree. Very old and large specimens are much more irregular with lower branches a long way up the tree.
The Giant Sequoia is the largest tree species in the world when measured by volume. There are taller trees and trees with wider trunks at the base but there is no other tree species that comes even close to the volume of the Giant Sequoia trees. The champion of this tree species is the General Sherman tree.


  1. Beautiful tree. I saw some of these when visiting my brother in Eugene a few years ago. I wonder how old it is.

  2. Very nice blog. I saw this tree in Victoria, B.C. Canada near the Empress Hotel. I live in the eastern part of Canada and we do not have them there. I had brought back some of the cones to us as crafts.

  3. Beautiful tree indeed.

    There are many more planted in the US. Here's an overview of giant sequoias in cultivation: Giant Sequoia Inventory

  4. A About 2 1/2 years ago I gave my now husband a giant sequoia to plant in his yard. We planted it together and tended to it constantly. We live in Southeastern Indiana and it has thrived. In June, it will be 3 years old. We are extremely proud of that tree and hope to see it grow into a giant.

  5. Probably the most comparable are the coast redwoods.

    Actually, Giant Sequoia are not the largest trees in the world. But there are 7 individual ones which are the largest, one being General Sherman.

    The Coast Redwood named Lost Monarch, about 5 hours south of Portland, is bigger than every known Giant Sequoia in the world, except those seven. The trunk of Lost Monarch has a wider diameter at dbh than General Sherman too, which is quite a feat in nature.

    There are records on file of either a Crannel Giant or Lidsey Tree coast redwood, that was 70,000 cubic feet, quite a bit bigger than General Sherman's 52,000 cubic feet. It's only due to the coast redwood logging that allowed 7 Sequoiadendrons to presently be the largest trees. But species-wise, the coast redwoods have the potential to be the largest.

    It's possible that Douglas firs used to be the tallest trees on the west coast too.

    The Giant Sequoia are my favorite landscape trees locally though.


    MDV ~ Oregon