The north coast of California is home to the world’s tallest trees. A walk through a virgin old-growth redwood forest can be one of the most awe-inspiring experiences you’ll ever have. These trees sometimes live to be over 2,000 years old and can reach heights of 300 feet and more. The tallest redwood tree ever recorded was 367 feet in height. That is taller than a football field. The gigantic redwoods dwarf their other softwood and hardwood neighbors, thus becoming “the Mount Everest of all living things.”
However, there is another feature of these towering giants that is truly remarkable and somewhat unknown to most of us. Even though they grow up to heights of 300 feet and can weigh more than one million pounds, these trees have a very shallow root system.
Their roots only go down three to six feet but can spread out several hundred feet. As these roots extend out, they intertwine with their brother and sister redwoods and other trees as well. This intertwining of roots creates a webbing effect. Most engineers would tell you this shallow root system still would be impossible to keep the redwoods intact and protected against strong winds and floods. However, the interconnecting root systems are the secret of their strength and teach us a great lesson.
First, let’s acknowledge that these magnificent giants simply could not make it alone. Without being connected to other family members and helpful neighbors, they would not survive.
Thus the idea behind Redwood Therapy and Youth Services was born.
“Working together to achieve new heights”