Have you ever wanted to learn more about chimera albino redwoods? Would you like to see these fascinating trees up close? Now's your chance to meet the researchers who are bringing these mysterious trees out of the shadows. Come finish out summer by learning the science behind albino chimera redwoods and see how they are telling us about the overall health of the redwood forest. Arborist Tom Stapleton & Plant Biology Ph.D. student Zane Moore will be hosting several events over a three-week period discussing their latest research. In addition to these discussions, there will be other interesting topics regarding redwoods that you'll be sure to enjoy. Outside of park admission, the cost to attend these events is free!
Hope to see you there!
August 12th @ 3 pm Golden Gate Dairy Farm House in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area:
Zane Moore will be putting on a talk about albino redwoods in the San Francisco Bay Area. For those not wanting to travel far, this is your best bet to catch a local event. Duration 60 minutes.
August 13th @ 8:30 am in Muir Woods:
Zane Moore will be leading a guided walk and tree measuring demonstration. This will be your chance to see how the experts determine which trees become the next tall champion. Duration 60 minutes.
August 25th @ 7 pm Big Basin State Park Campfire Talk:
Zane Moore will be speaking about Big Basin’s tallest tree in the world south of San Francisco, and then discuss the extremely rare albino redwoods, considered by some to be the redwood's biggest mystery. Duration 45 minutes. Big Basin State Park Events
August 26th @ 12:30 pm Big Basin State Park Guided Walk:
Come learn how researchers measure the tallest trees in the world. Join Zane Moore, to learn about measuring these tall, tall trees. Zane will show you how scientists determine the height, size, and ages of these trees. We’ll look at the history and future directions of tree measurement from cameras to lasers to drones. This 1-mile, a 90-minute walk will take us to where technology and trees meet. Duration 90 minutes
September 2nd @ 3 pm Humboldt Redwoods State Park Guided Walk:
Join Tom Stapleton on a guided walk to see some of the most unique albino redwoods in the park. On this walk, you'll have the chance to learn about albino redwoods and see the fascinating aspects of their unique growing environments. The highlight of the walk will be the opportunity to see the largest aerial albino redwood known. The starting location will be at the HRSP Visitor Center. Duration 90 Minutes. Humboldt Redwoods State Park Events
September 2nd @ 8:30 pm Humboldt Redwoods State Park Campfire Talk:
Tom Stapleton will be putting on a slide show presentation on albino chimeric redwoods to park visitors and guests. The talk will consist of the history of albino redwoods, the various types found, & the latest research. This will be an opportune time to see live chimera albino redwoods on display. The campfire talk will be held next to the HRSP Visitor Center. Duration 50 minutes. Humboldt Redwoods State Park Events
September 3rd, 10 am-4 pm Forestlands Expo Ft. Bragg Booth Display:
For the second year in a row, Tom Stapleton will be putting on an exciting booth presentation about albino chimeric redwoods at the Forestlands Expo in Ft. Bragg Labor Day weekend. If you are not able to attend earlier events, here’s your chance to see a pictorial display about the research Tom and his colleagues are conducting with these unique trees. For more information on the Forestlands Expo and the Paul Bunyan Day festivities, please see this link: Forestlands Expo Ft. Bragg Sep 3rd
Here's an article plus phone interview with Zane Moore & Kaleigh Rogers from Motherboard discussing the ongoing experiments currently underway with chimeric albino redwoods. Although absent from the interview, Arborist Tom Stapleton is actively involved with these experiments by providing the chimeric albino redwoods necessary to hopefully answer the fascinating questions Zane has pointed out within the article. With their ongoing collaboration efforts moving forward, both men hope an exciting breakthrough can be made in the near future. Below is the link to the article.
Chuck & Christina of Marin County shares with us an aerial albino growing from a redwood on their property. The mutation is quite small and appears to be only 3-4 years old. Interestingly there are a few chimeric branches laced within the mutation which points to more complex genetics than first thought. Another curious oddity is this albino has been exposed to ground pollution (sewage & waste oil) which again might be pointing to a possible man-made cause of this mutation. Over the years we’ll be watching this one for further changes. Again, thanks Chuck and Christina for reporting this albino redwood.
Dennis from Erwitte Germany has sent us these pictures of a four-year-old Coast Redwood seedling that he propagated. Amazingly this year it has started developing sectorial chimerism and is the only case outside the United States that we’re aware of. According to Dennis, the seedling germinated out of a group of two hundred seeds collected from the Sequoiafarm Arboretum located in KaldenKirchen Germany. The arboretum is known for containing impressive stands of coast redwoods & holds a collection some consider home to the most cold-tolerant strains in the world. At a latitude equal with Calgary Canada, winter temperatures frequently fall below freezing. It is not uncommon for temperatures to dip down to 5 F°/-15 C° pushing the cold-tolerant limits with the species. Dennis is currently working on a breeding project with Coast Redwoods to find and develop the coldest tolerant strains available. Due to these weather extremes, it’s speculated that Dennis’s sectorial chimera may have been a result of cold-induced mutation during cell division.
For more information on the history of redwoods in Germany, see the link here to Sequoiafarm. Note: you'll need to use the 'translate' feature on your browser to view the page in English. Sequoiafarm Kaldenkirchen
An article featured in the American Conifer Society Central Region newsletter. Published with permission & courtesy of Editor Jerry Belanger:
Frequently we’re asked at Chimera Redwoods if there will be chimeric albino seedlings and cuttings available for sale. Arborist Tom Stapleton is currently working on a project that will make this a reality in the future. As of this writing, Tom and the Holderman family have patented three chimeric albino redwoods: ‘Mosaic Delight' (USPP26573P3), 'Grand Mosaic' (USPP29606P3), & 'Early Snow' (USPP29217P2). These trees are still in the research and development stage and hopefully will be available to the public within the next five years. The trees were developed as a result of a greenhouse experiment and were not taken from cuttings in the wild. Funds received from the sale of these trees will help offset research expenses. Tom hopes that making albino redwood chimeras available to the public will help reduce the desire of souvenir hunters to poach natural albino redwoods in our state and national parks.
If you are interested in purchasing an albino chimeric redwood in the future and would like to be put on our waiting list, please reach out to Tom in the ‘Contact’ section of the website.
Below is a picture of the cultivar 'Mosaic Delight'. This Coast Redwood albino chimera has a tendency to produce weeping green branches, while the albino branch habit is mostly horizontal to slightly upright in form. Due to its moderate to slow growth, this cultivar may be better suited as a house plant or featured in a small garden setting. Tests are underway to determine its suitability to these environments.
After heavy metals were discovered in albino redwoods in 2016, Tom Stapleton and Zane Moore have teamed up to help further understand these new questions in albino redwood research. A select group of Tom’s chimeric albino redwoods are being tested with a specific heavy metal to see if this enhances albino redwood growth. The results may give us a better understanding of why we see these mutations in the wild and if redwoods are truly filtering out these toxins. Below is an article from the Bay Nature Magazine discussing the topic:
Fellow research colleague Zane Moore shares his recent discovery about the ecology of Albino Redwoods in releation to soil toxicity. Learn what finally may be causing these mutations to occur in coast redwoods below in this poster & news links:
To best view this poster, right click your mouse over the image and select: 'Open image in a new tab'.
Once again Arborist Tom Stapleton put on another exciting booth presentation at the Forestlands Expo in Ft. Bragg on Labor Day weekend. Tom teamed up with Mendocino Redwood Company during the Paul Bunyan Days festivities in Ft. Bragg. Locals from the area had a firsthand look at some of the rare trees that Tom had in propagation. Tom explained that these trees are essentially the “Canary in the coal mine” telling us how redwoods are adapting to an ever-changing environment where the implications of pollution may be having an effect on the redwood forests.
Paul Bunyan (played by Mike Stephens) stands alongside Robert Douglas Senior Biologist/Forest Science Manager for Mendocino Redwood Company during the Paul Bunyan Day’s festivities in Ft. Bragg.
On June 7th Tom Stapleton held a booth presentation about albino and chimera redwoods at Trees of Mystery. The turnout was great with tourists and locals alike coming out to see the fascinating trees which Tom and Zane are studying. School children from Mary Peacock Elementary in Crescent City were seen listening to Tom's description of the science behind the trees. The kids had the chance to look into a microscope and see up close the distinct color patterns within chimeric albino redwoods. Many were taken back by the idea that redwoods could grow in such beautiful color arrays. Folks visiting from out of state expecting to see only redwoods of great size and height were pleasantly surprised by the multicolored redwood trees. Some people exclaimed, "is this real" as if interpreting that the foliage was fake. Tom said: "experience it for yourself". The expression on most people’s faces was one of bewilderment that a redwood could exhibit such a bright white appearance and yet be so soft. For more information about the visit, you can read it here in the Crescent City Triplicate newspaper: Albino Redwoods News Article 5-28-16
Thanks again to Debbie and Brenda at Trees of Mystery for making this visit possible!