You are on page 1of 139

Life History and Ecological Guide to the

Coast Redwood, Sequoia sempervirens


Natural History Instructors, Interpretive Specialists,

and Docents


The Plant Communities, Biota, and Topography of the

Mangels Ranch Area of the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park

Daniel J. Miller
August, 2005

Heather Butler, Director of the Web of Life Field (WOLF) School, a K-8th grade
environmental education outdoor school:
“Dan Miller’s Redwood Guide is highly recommended for aspiring naturalists,
teachers, and docents working in redwood regions. From basic terminology to updated figures
(Which IS the tallest redwood?), the information in this Guide provides an excellent
background in the natural history of the redwood even for instructors lacking a formal science

John Evarts, Publisher, Cachuma Press:

“Dan Miller’s Life History and Ecological Guide to the Coast Redwood (Sequoia
sempervirens), contains a wealth of information about the world’s tallest tree. Mr. Miller has
created this guide as an aid to teachers, docents, and others who are entrusted with the all-
important task of awakening appreciation for the redwood trees and ecosystems. Illustrated
with clear and informative drawings, this Guide is a valuable educational resource.

Reed Noss, David-Shine Professor of Conservation Biology, University of Central Florida:

“Daniel Miller has produced an informative and enchanting guide to the life history
and ecology of the coast redwood, the world’s tallest tree. The rich natural historical
information contained in this book will be of interest to teachers, students of all ages,
conservationists, and anyone else who stands in awe of these remarkable trees.”

Thom Sutfin, Forest Manager of the Soquel Demonstration State Forest, California
Department of Forestry and Fire Protection:
“Dan Miller’s Guide is an amazing compilation of information on Coast Redwood.
Nature lovers will find it fascinating.”

Randy Widera, Executive Director, Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks:

“In my 18 years of interpreting the Redwoods of the Santa Cruz Mountains I have
never run across a guide to the Redwoods as comprehensive and regionally significant as Mr.
Miller’s Life History and Ecological Guide to the Coast Redwood. This is not a guide to read
through once and glean a few facts, it is a conversation with the reader and a challenge to look
past myths of this grand tree to the even more amazing understandings that are being
uncovered to this day. By focusing his skills as a scientist on a place that has literally been his
back yard for over 40 years he brings to us in this guide a wonderful blend of individual
passion and insightful first hand observations.”

Copyright, © 2005 by Daniel J. Miller

No part of this Guide can be reproduced without permission from the author. Copies can be
made for and by natural history instructors, interpreters, docents, and students, but not sold for
profit. Drawings are by the author. Contact: Dan Miller, 735 Cathedral Dr. Aptos CA 95003.
The Guide was being formatted and edited for pdf down-loading by Heather Butler, Patricia
Smith, Scott Miller, and Randy Widera:

Listing of Figures and Tables (iv)

Acknowledgements (v)
Why I Wrote the Guide (vi)
California State Park Department Request (viii)
Primary Value of the Guide (x)
Changes in Cultural Values Regarding the Redwood 1
Scope and Format of the Guide 4
SECTION I. Defining the Ecosystem and Topography for the Mangels Ranch area 7
Plant Communities 7
Vegetative Climax and Seral Stages 8
Topography, Geology, and Climate 9
East and West Facing Slopes of the Mangels Ranch Area 10
Soil Types, Floods, Landslides, and Slump Jumbles 12
SECTION II. Summary of Redwood Structures and Adaptations 14
The Redwood as a “Superlative” Tree 14
Is the Official Common Name Redwood or Coast Redwood? 14
The Public’s Imagery of the Redwood 14
Official State Trees, and The Tallest Tree in the World 15
Maximum Diameters of the Redwood and Giant Sequoia 15
Maximum Ages of Redwood and Other Very Old Trees and Plants 16
Basic Redwood Structures and Adaptations 16-24 (Figures 4.1-4.17)
Forests, Stands, and Groves 25
Treefall Gap, Root-pull Pit, and Rootwad 25
Harvesting Effects: Percent Remaining of Old-growth Redwood 26
Definition of an Old-growth Redwood Tree 27
Forestry Criteria of the Extent of Logging 28
Unlogged Old-growth Forests - First Generation Redwoods 28
Residual Old-growth and Residual Second Growth - 29
Second-growth Forest - Second Generation Trees 30
Third-growth Forest - Third Generation Trees 30
Redwood Distribution - Past and Present 31
Sea Salt Desiccation 31
Seed Germination 31
Survival of Seedlings 33
Tannins and Phenolics 33
Micorrhizae 33
Determining the Age of a Redwood 33
Official Size Classification of Redwood Trees Based on dbh Diameter 34
Nursery Logs, Nurse Trees, and Nurse Plants 34
Role of Fog Drip 37

CONTENTS (continued)

Role of Litter, Duff, and Humus 38

Role of Fire 39
Fire Scars Creating Changes in Growth Rings 39
Mean Fire Interval (MFI) 40
Lightning-Volcano Fire Regime - up to 11,000 years BP 41
Aboriginal Fire Regime - 11,000 years ago to 1792 41
Spanish-Mexican Fire Regime - 1792-1848 43
Anglo Fire Regime -1848-1929 44
Recent Fire Regime - 1929-present 45
Fire Scars, Fire Cavity, Chimney Tree, and Goosepens 46
How These Fire Data Relate to Redwoods in Mangels Ranch Area 46
Root and Trunk Functions 48
Albino Redwoods, Tumorigenesis, and Epiphytes 49
Structures Originating From Dormant Buds 50
Growth Regulators, Sprouts (clones) 50
Sprout Rings (Fairy Rings) 51
Tree Members Comprising a Redwood Sprout Ring May Not Be Sprouts
From the Same “Mother” Tree 52
Corralitos, Christmas Tree, Stump Peeler 53
Reiteration 54
Piggyback Tree 54
Trunk Sprouts, Lignotubers, and Burls 55
Willis Jepson’s 1910 “Circle” 57
Types of Redwood Clusters 61
Slump Jumbles Are a Form of Creep Gravitational Erosion 62
Landslides 69
Slump Jumble Clusters 69
Slump Jumble Cluster Formation 69
Initial findings of Cluster Study in Happy Valley 70
Confirmation of Slump Jumble Cluster Process by Geologist 71
Self-pruning of Redwoods 72
Creosote Bush Expanding Circles in the Mohave Desert 72
Present Development of a Potential Cluster in Happy Valley 73
Summary of Slump Jumble Cluster Criteria 76
Slump Jumble Clusters in Adjacent Forest Stands 76
Dominant Plant Species in Slump Jumble Cluster Area 77
Wildlife Events and Listing of Plants and Animals in the Mangels Ranch Area 78
Appendix I - The Mill Valley Cluster (Jepson’s Circle) 89

CONTENTS (continued)

Appendix II - Examples of tree growth in response to light, ground water, rainfall, and
injury to the cambium of a redwood downed in Mangels Ranch Area. 95
Glossary 99
Literature Cited 102
Book Reviews of Redwood Literature for Interpreters and Docents 106
Index 117


Figure 1. Lower Area of the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park noting location of
Mangels Ranch Area, George’s Flat, Buggy Trail, and the Pourroy Trail area. 5
Figure 2. Topography and vegetative classification of the Mangels Ranch Area. 6
Figure 3. Soil types in the lower area of Nisene Marks State Park, with emphasis on the
highly erodable loam extending through Happy Valley. The loam is labeled #112,
and is enhanced in this figure. Map from Bowman13, 1980. 13
Figure 4. Drawings of redwood growth forms, Figs. 4.1- 4.17. 17-24
Figure 5. Fifty-year coverage of wildfires in Lightning and Recent Regimes. Fires less
than 10 acres are not mapped. Maps from Greenlee and Langenheim42. 42
Figure 6. Distribution and size of redwoods in Piggyback slump jumble cluster. 63
Figure 7. Distribution and size of redwoods in Tent slump jumble cluster. 65
Figure 8. Distribution and size of redwoods in Grand Cluster. 67
Figure 9. New cluster forming on level ground downwind of a large slump jumble
cluster. 74
Figure 10. Distribution and size of redwoods in the Mill Valley Cluster in Old Mill Park,
Mill Valley. 93
Figure 11. Photographs of redwood trees in a section of the perimeter trees of the
Mill Valley Cluster. Note the enlarged buttresses and adjoining burl and lignotuber
growths due to heavy use. 94
Figure 12. Annual rainfall from 1970-2004 compared with growth of annual rings of a
25 inch (avg. dbh) redwood downed in January, 2005 in Mangels Ranch Area (see
also Figure 4.4). 98


TABLE 1. Mammals Observed in the Mangels Ranch Area. 85

TABLE 2. Amphibians and Reptiles Observed in the Mangels Ranch Area. 85
TABLE 3. Birds Observed in the Mangels Ranch Area. 86
TABLE 4. Partial Listing of Common Native Plants in the Mangels Ranch Area. 87
TABLE 5. Listing of Introduced Invasive Plants in the Mangels Ranch Area. 88


In 1996 I was active with “Friends of Nisene Marks State Park”, a group of Santa Cruz
county residents (mostly Aptos) who were trying to prevent a small forest of uncut old-growth
redwoods from being harvested in the Mangels Ranch Area. My contribution to their
eventually successful effort was to engage in redwood research and ecological studies. Much
thanks is offered to these community activists.
Executive Director Margaret Eadington of The Trust for Public Land (TPL) asked me
to show the property to an individual who later donated to the TPL to buy the property.
Environmental counsel Keith Sugar ably assisted. My thanks to Margaret and Keith. In
1999, The Trust for Public Land donated the property to the California State Parks (CSP). The
Life History and Ecological Guide to the Redwood arose out of my earlier action to protect
the forest for educational and contemplative use. I received help from many sources while
compiling the Guide. My wife Pat edited much of the text. Our son Steven and daughter Kitty
took photographs, recorded data in the field, and assisted in laying out alternative proposed
Members of Friends of Nisene Marks State Park gave their enthusiastic assistance.
Among them were Agnes Van Eck Reed and Karl Mertz, both of them members of the
Mangels family as well. Other Friends of Nisene Marks State Park members who helped were
Sandy Henn, Linda Sanguino, Jim and Peggy Crocker, Don Richards, and Diane Strickland.
California State Park officials and personnel gave much encouragement and help.
David Vincent, Superintendent of the Santa Cruz County Area, was always available for
consulting, and to give me permission to gather information in the park.
Retired Superintendent Ralph Fairfield gave me exceptional assistance in my studies.
The personnel of The Forest Nisene Marks State Park were helpful, especially
Supervisor Nedra Martinez and Barbi Barry (maintenance and trails). Park Rangers Chris
Sanguino and Mike Romniger assisted, with Mike transporting me to the far ends of the park.
I received greatly appreciated direction from Superintendent Kirk Lingenfelter, a recognized
master of trail construction. It was Kirk who made the suggestion I submit a proposal for use
of the Mangels Ranch Area when it is opened to the public.
The ecology staff, George Gray, Chris Spohrer, and Tim Hyland helped in many ways
to stress the ecological values of this area. Interpretive specialist Julie Sidel, after reading the
draft of the Guide, invited me to a docent training session.
Exceptional thanks is due to Thom Sutfin, Edgar Orre, and Denise Muir of the
California Forestry and Fire Protection Department’s Soquel Demonstration State Forest
office. Forestry Manager Thom Sutfin spent considerable time editing figures and some
sections of the text, and secretary Denise Muir was very helpful as a line editor for some of
the text.
Randy Widera, Executive Director of the Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, helped
with the text and with advice. Heather Butler, Director of the Web of Life Field (WOLF)
School environmental school for students, helped with the editing.

Dave Stockton of the Humboldt Redwoods State Park, and James Wheeler of the
Redwoods National Park, gave up-to-date-information on which redwood is currently the
Dr. Dean Taylor of the Jepson Herbarium at Berkeley gave valuable new information
that the Interior Live Oak previously identified in Santa Cruz county (and south along the
coast to near Santa Barbara), is actually the Shreve oak, Quercus parvula var shrevei.
Dr. Richard Beidleman of the Jepson Herbarium searched Willis Jepson’s field notes
and found important data collected in 1898 by Jepson on a circle of redwoods in Mill Valley.
This information is important for present studies on redwood genetics and cluster formation.
Dr. Peter Del Tredici of the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University sent me
information and publications on lignotubers and cluster formation. Extremely helpful with the
“Jepson circle” research were Joyce Crews, History Room Librarian at the Mill Valley Public
Library, and Peggy Chenoweth, Board of Directors of the Mill Valley Historical Society.
Alan Kunze, geology graduate student at Fresno State University, substantiated that
some redwood clusters in Happy Valley established themselves in areas where mineral soil
was exposed by slump jumbles.
Toward giving clear explanation in the Guide of cluster formation and redwood
growth, I had correspondence and phone conversations with Reed Noss (The Redwood Forest,
Lit. citation 5), and John Evarts (Coast Redwood, Lit. citation 24). Their interest in redwood
growth patterns was very helpful.
I am sure I have overlooked acknowledging many persons who have been generous
with their help. I thank all of you not mentioned, and thank those persons who undertook
action on their own to help develop the Mangels Ranch Area into an exceptional nature study
park. - Daniel J. Miller, 2005

WHY I WROTE THIS GUIDE - Natural History Experiences and Education

Over the past eleven years, I have been a volunteer Natural History speaker in 6-12th
grade classes in Santa Cruz County and the three adjoining counties. Over 9600 students
attended my presentation titled, The Environment and Population Growth. Part of my
commitment to writing this Guide comes from the discussions I have had with these students
and their teachers. I have also led nature study hikes for 4H members in Santa Cruz County
for several years.
I was encouraged to find that students were aware of the environmental movement.

But many of them did not realize that Recycle, Reduce, and Re-use are not the only actions
needed. The teachers recognize this problem and contact me because I emphasize the basic
principles of ecology which are needed to protect renewable resources. An ecological
understanding leads to realizing the value of sustaining and protecting the life-supporting
ecosystems for all animals, including humans. I explain in the classrooms why the remaining
50 percent of the world’s forests must be given much more attention not only for protection of
the remaining flora and fauna in the forest, but mainly for the survival of human cultures.
My reception in classes was enhanced not only by my profession as a marine biologist,
but being able to anecdotally relate my naturalist experiences. As a child and since, I was
always very close to nature and obsessively wanted to know about the plants and animals
around me.
These early experiences included moving in 1932 to Chicago Park, near Grass Valley,
where my father bought five acres. The major plants on the property were grass, Ponderosa
and gray pines, incense-cedar, and manzanita. My father cut down Ponderosa pines in a
nearby forest, dragged them in by horse, and by himself built a small two-story log house. Our
two-children family camped under the Incense-cedars for two summers, and spent one winter
in the chicken house. We had to keep our milk goat near us at night while we were camping to
protect her from the bands of coyotes.
We saw coyotes regularly because of a large brush fire nearby several years before.
Effects of the fire increased rodents which were probably the coyote’s main food. Witnessing
the function of predator-prey relationships and watching the growth recovery of the original
vegetation was a first-hand ecological education. Ecological concepts were not discussed in
the family--we simply were aware of what was happening around us. I don’t remember being
told not to run away from large predators, but possibly I had some basic instinct at age seven
which told me not to. By myself, and in the forest some distance from home, I came upon
several coyotes who were staring at me about 100 feet away. I froze in my tracks. They stared
at me for a short while, then trotted away.
In WWII, I was in Italy as a medical aid man with the infantry in the 10th Mountain
Division. For the first time, I saw a land that was devoid of a wilderness feeling. The forest
trees were mostly in rows and when a limb fell it was immediately picked up for fuel. Wild
animals were vulnerable and scarce during wartime.
When I returned from Europe, I went to UC Berkeley. I signed up for Aldo Starker
Leopold’s ecologically oriented Wildlife Conservation major. Included were several courses
in forestry, botany, ecology, paleontology, and geomorphology. One of my concerns was the
over-exploitation of wildlife areas because of the expanding U.S. economy and exponential
world population growth after the war.
My California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG) experiences started in

1949 on a Klamath River salmon and steelhead survey near Oregon, near Mt. Shasta I
conducting a summer creel census at a high mountain lake, then worked in game management
in desert areas constructing watering devices for birds. My first hand field work gave me a
broad ecological awareness. In 1951, I transferred to the Marine Fisheries Branch of the
CDFG, where I conducted marine fish life histories, headed the state’s sea otter project, made
a study of shark attacks on humans along the Pacific coast, and captured and tagged harbor
seals at the mouth of the Klamath River. I also conducted marine sport fishery use and catch
surveys from Oregon to Pt. Conception.

Introduction to Mangels Ranch Area

When my wife, children, and I moved to Aptos in 1962, our property abutted the 95
acre Mangels Ranch Area. A new owner bought that property in 1986, and by 1996 the
property was under chapter eleven of the federal bankruptcy court. The judge recommended
that the owner obtain a Timber Harvest Plan to help pay the debts.
With the owner’s permission, I conducted a timber cruise of the property, measuring
the width of over 800 redwoods two inches or more in diameter. The study convinced the
owner, the judge, and the three trustee holders that the forested property was more valuable
uncut than cut. I and 30 local residents initiated action that led to The Trust for Public Land
purchasing and then donating the Mangels Ranch Area to the California State Parks in March,
1999. More than 600 of the redwoods in the Mangels Ranch Area are in unique cluster
formations. Over the past two years I have conducted a study on the process of this redwood
cluster formation that has not been previously described. The study is still under way and
some of the results are given in the cluster section of the text and in Appendix I.

California State Parks Department Request

In August, 2003, Kirk Lingenfelter, Superintendent of the Central District of Santa

Cruz County State Parks, asked me to present what I considered to be the most valuable use
configuration for the Mangels Ranch Area before it is opened to the public. Mangels Ranch
Area is a unique, nearly primeval area that is highly suitable for development of an
outstandingly rich interpretative nature trail emphasizing redwood adaptations in the southern
sector of its range.
To justify the nature trail, I needed to conduct a thorough literature search on life
histories of the three dominant unique plant species in the area: the redwood, the purple
needlegrass, Nassella pulchra, and the newly accepted subspecies of oak, the Shreve oak,
Quercus parvula var shrevei. Besides the importance of developing a nature trail for the
MRA, this Guide will also supply instructors and docents with the redwood’s adaptations
throughout its range. The instructors can use the Guide to develop their presentations and can
find additional reference information.

A tremendous amount of research has been conducted on the redwood in recent years. Most of
the basic life history studies were conducted in the Northern California heavy rain and fog.
Consequently, there has been less research conducted in the drier part of the range south of
San Francisco.
There are adaptations of the redwood in this southern extension that may be valuable
for the species survival as global warming continues. The Mangels Ranch Area not only has
examples of all the adaptations of the northern area redwoods, but also has examples of
redwood adaptations in its drier southern extension. I had not at first considered presenting
this information as a guide, but after intensive study, it became evident that by including the
Mangels Ranch Area redwood adaptations, a Guide could be constructed for interpretive
specialists throughout the redwood’s range. At the turn of the century, the area now known as
The Forest of Nisene Marks State Park was the southernmost region in the state yielding great
quantities of redwood lumber.
This Guide has many quotations and excerpts from the works of key redwood
researchers. I have several reasons for this: (1) Even though I had Forestry research training, I
am relying on many quotes and excerpts from the recent researchers to adequately relate the
latest forestry information that is new to me. I have sufficient education to understand what
they are saying, thus the many quotes and excerpts from the principal research contributors.
When I paraphrase information from a publication, to be safe, I sometimes follow the
paraphrase with the direct quote, (2) the reader does not have to take time to obtain the
publication to question the meaning of a quote, and (3) some quotations present beautifully
worded phrases and personal feelings. These thoughts cannot be transferred into someone
else’s terminology, and should not be used unless quoted. Aldo Leopold’s (Aldo Starker
Leopold’s father) description of the Land Ethic on pages 3-4 of this Guide, is an example of
an elegant, lucid analysis of a philosophical truth.
Several subjects are given a greater number of quotes in the Guide. These include the
difficulty in understanding the differences between lignotubers and burls, the definition of an
old-growth tree, and the fascinating discussions of the MFI (mean fire interval) Regimes by
Greenlee and Langenheim. The Fire Regime data are as much for historical value as they are
for scientific analysis.
Because of the lignotuber’s importance, I have given it extensive quoting. Apparently
most natural history writers and redwood researchers considered there are not enough
physiological differences between burls and lignotubers to mention lignotubers to the general
public, so they discuss burls only. These two redwood growths are complicated but are
important physiological adaptations, and interpretive specialists should be aware of their
The Guide has a glossary which includes scientific subjects and terms in the quotations
and excerpts, as well as from my text. Part of the Guide includes the tentative results of my
continuing research on Slump Jumble Clusters.

I have also followed new wording of some redwood adaptations suggested by some of the
authors, and have added a few of my own suggestions for uniform terminology. These include
the unscientific and misleading use of the term “fairy rings” instead of sprout rings, the
common correct use of sprouts instead of clones, and the meanings of nursery log, nurse tree,
nurse plant, and reiteration. I use the name “Piggyback Tree” for a living downed redwood
with tree-like reiterations growing on the dorsal surface. This uncommon growth adaptation
has been mentioned in the literature, but has not been given a name.

Primary Value of the Guide

The Guide is punched for binders so users can enter new items or replace old data. The
binder can be carried by the instructor, and when encountering a difficult question in the field,
the Guide may include the answer, and the name of an author or book for more information.
Book reviews are included for users to develop their own redwood life history library. The
Guide includes mention, and often extended descriptions, of most of the redwood’s
adaptations to survive from the coastal Northern California rain forest to the chaparral and
Northern Scrub plant communities of central California. The Guide would be of value to CSP
interpretive specialists and docents in all redwood parks. New information of the formation of
redwood clusters that is not in the literature is elaborated. I expect this comprehensive
collection of redwood life history data would attract potential docents and trail volunteers.

Before describing the attributes of the Mangels Ranch Area, I am thanking the Van
Eck and Mangels families for their foresight in preservation of a unique valley in this area that
Agnes and Jan Carel Van Eck named Happy Valley. In about 1918, they joined the Save-the-
Redwoods League, and kept this nearly primeval valley protected. The 2005 revised General
Plan for the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park proposes that the trails in the MRA to not be
multiuse, thus enabling the future development of an exceptional Nature Study trail system for
educators as well as for hikers and runners.


Changes in Cultural Values Regarding the Redwood

The redwood is one of the world’s most esteemed and desired trees for forest
silviculture. Concurrently, ecologists and other concerned persons seek to insure the survival
of the redwood as a major feature of California’s terrestrial vegetation. Virtually uncontrolled
harvesting occurred during the ecologically disastrous days of Manifest Destiny and industrial
growth of the late 1800’s. Far too late, laws were passed to curb unsustainable harvesting
practices, and to protect both the remaining five percent of old-growth redwoods, and second-
growth redwood stands nearing harvesting size.
These days, where second-growth forests are harvested on private land, the forests are
sometimes replaced by plantations - masses of single-aged trees that of themselves do not
constitute natural forests with their associated abutting and understory plants, birds, and
animals. Such artificial plantations do not form natural ecotones with natural plant
communities, but are part of management to supply redwood lumber and products. I do not
know the present status of this harvesting practice. Many environmental activists, either
through private efforts or through organizations, have been effective in altering societal values
and restructuring public policy concerning redwood harvesting to maintain sustainable harvest
yields. They have also brought attention to the esthetical and educational values of
maintaining totally protected areas for wilderness experiences and contemplative enjoyment. .
In 1971, natural history writer Elna Bakker1 in AN ISLAND CALLED CALIFORNIA
described the disappearance throughout the world of most species of Sequoia over the ages,
due to climate changes. Bakker urged that attention be given to retaining the few nearly
primeval forests remaining, and reported the attitudes of some of the harvesters: 1*

Foresters have referred to them as ‘disaster climax forests,’

meaning that if totally protected from the rejuvenating
effects of near calamity the species would sooner or later
suffer the consequences of its vigorous nature and degenerate
under the decadence of soft living.

Harvesters wish to increase tree growth by harvesting the larger trees so that smaller
ones, freed from the shade cast by the older ones, can grow more rapidly. The board-feet yield
of a forest often increases with remaining younger trees. Harvesters also wish to remove trees
that they deem unmarketable - “cull” and “trash” trees. In contrast to this commercial stance,
increasing numbers of ecologically aware persons are at last demanding preservation of all
remaining old-growth trees, and more protection of second-growth forests.

* Throughout the Guide, superscript numbers refer to the author in the

literature Cited section.

The ecological trend of considering the redwood as part of a plant community rather than only
as a harvestable rapidly growing tree appeared in 1977 in the following quotation from one of
the prominent redwood researchers, Paul Zinke2:

There needs to be more study of the autecological requirements

of the various species that comprise its forest vegetation. For
example, most of the coniferous forest species are at the
southern limit of their ranges in this portion of California,
representing the southern limit of the great coniferous forest
of the Northwest. Presumably this is related to the greater
aridity and warmer temperatures that occur at this transition
to oak woodlands and grasslands to the south and to the
interior. Are these limits due to occasional extremes of
drought, or to gradients of increasingly limiting average
moisture? At what points in the life cycles of the species
concerned are the factors limiting: is it seedling survival
that is critical, or overall growth in relation to competitive

The Conference on Coast Redwood Forest Ecology and Management was held at
Humboldt State University in 1996. W. J. Libby’s keynote address, expressing the abiding
concerns of ecologists about redwood preservation, called for increased ethical choices. He
expressed the concern about redwood protection, and discussed the value of the lumber
industry to conduct a sustainable yield concept which includes recognition and respect for
other values:

Management of our forests should serve various and carefully

considered human goals, ideally these goals will have ethical
underpinnings. Some of these goals will be to a degree,
mutually exclusive. One goal is to grow and harvest redwood as
a renewable alternative to non-renewable, environmentally more
harmful resources. A second goal is to maintain any of the
other species that inhabit redwood ecosystems and particularly
to husband those that have been negatively impacted by human

W. J. Libby3 also asked “Is sustaining biodiversity a human goal?”


The answer is, apparently, yes. Today, more organizations than ever, and more individual
activists direct their efforts toward protection of the environment and ecosystems. At the
Humboldt State conference, Fredrica Bowcutt of the Society for Ecological Restoration in
Mendocino County presented a paper describing interviews conducted with timber workers,
resource ecologists, and reinhabitors (back-to-landers). On the topic of ecological approach of
management, Bowcutt reports:

The reinhabitors and resource ecologists placed high on the

priority list controlling invasive exotic species, landform
restoration (recontouring of abandoned roads), and stream
restoration…. Timber workers are split 50/50 on whether non-
native species should be managed. Part of this can be explained
by the relatively high percentage of timber workers who do not
support any ecological restoration efforts.4

In 2000, Conservation Biologist Reed Noss5 stated:

The reader is aware by now that saving the redwoods means much
more than saving big trees. It means protecting the forest
ecosystem in its natural condition wherever such opportunities
exist…. Because some species require management practices are
still unknown…. Sustainability is appropriately interpreted as
a landscape or regional-scale property. It depends on
protected areas (reserves) as well as areas where redwoods are

In the July, 2000 issue of the Journal of Forestry6, the publication of the Society of
American Foresters, several articles and comments appear about the updated Code of Ethics
for Society members, demonstrating encouraging changes in societal attitudes on ecology. In
the year 2000 Code revision, the preamble included additional concepts to be considered
including Common Morality, Land Ethic, Land Health, Commitment for the Larger Goals of
Society, and Ecocentrism. Included in the year 2000 Preamble were comments referring to
Aldo Leopold’s term “Land Ethic.” I quote from Leopold’s 1949 book, A SAND COUNTY
7 (pages 202-207)

The extension of ethics, so far studied only by philosophers,

is actually a process in ecological evolution. Its sequences
may be described by ecological as well as in philosophical
terms. An ethic, ecologically, is a limitation on freedom of
action in the struggle for existence. An ethic,
philosophically, is a differentiation

of social from anti-social conduct. These are two definitions

of one thing. -- The land ethic simply enlarges the boundaries
of the community to include soils, waters, plants, and animals
or collectively: the land…. In short, a land ethic changes
the role of Homo sapiens from conqueror of the land community
to plain member and citizen of it. It implies respect for his
fellow-members, and also respect for the community as such.

In his book ROUND RIVER printed four years later in 1953, Aldo Leopold gives this
disquieting reminder to budding ecologists8 (page 165):

One of the penalties of an ecological education is that one

lives alone in a world of wounds. Much of the damage inflicted
on land is quite invisible to laymen. An ecologist must either
harden his shell and make believe that the consequences of
science are none of his business, or he must be the doctor who
sees the marks of death in a community that believes itself
well and does not want to be told otherwise.

Besides Aldo Leopold’s discussion of Land Ethic, other recently coined terms are
appearing in today’s expanded ecological lexicon --- for example, Leslie Reid’s14 “ecoscape”
can be used instead of “landscape” for vistas of plant communities.

Scope and Format of the Guide

The Guide emphasizes redwood functions as part of an intricate mosaic of plant

communities existing near the southern limit of the redwood’s range. Redwoods in this area
may be key to the survival of the redwood as global warming continues. Its interaction with
other species in the southern limit may reveal physiological adaptations to more relatively dry
and warm climates. Several of the associated plant species may also be near the limits of their
habitat requirements and distribution.
This discussion of the redwood covers all of its range. Examples of certain adaptive
structures are emphasized when they exist in the Mangels Ranch Area (MRA) (Figures 1 and
2). These adaptations will be demonstrated in a proposed nature trail series of interpretive
sites in MRA.
The citation for each publication or paper in the literature-cited section is given in the
text in small superscript numbers at the beginning or end of each quotation (or

Figure 1. Lower Area of the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park Noting the Location of the Mangels
Ranch Area, the Pourroy Trail Area, and the Flat Understory Area of George’s Picnic Area.

Figure 2. Topography and vegetative classification of the Mangels Ranch Area in the Forest of Nisene
Marks State Park.

author’s name) each time it appears. To facilitate gathering additional information, a review
section of the key books and research papers is included.



Plant Communities

A plant community is an aggregation of living organisms having

mutual relationships among themselves and to their environment.
Munz and Keck 9

Competition in a particular area for the basic needs of plants - nutrients, space, and
light, - results in the plant community for that area. Plant community studies are necessary for
the evaluation of Proper Use trail and nature study sites I will propose for the Mangels Ranch
Area (MRA) and in the Lower Area (Figure 1) of the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park
(FNMSP). In the Guide, I sometimes refer to these proposed sites in discussing and
demonstrating local plant communities.
California ecologists and botanists over the past 30 years have created plant
classifications according to their particular needs. This Guide uses classifications adopted by
the California Native Plant Society, whose project started in 1977 (Terrestrial Vegetation of
California, edited by Michael Barbour and Jack Major, 1988).10 Other naturalist writers with
similar but varying vegetative criteria are Elna Bakker1, Philip A. Munz9, Verna R.
Johnston11, and Allan A. Schoenherr12.
Schoenherr listed the large scale California biomes: desert, scrub, grassland, forests,
temperate rain forest, temperate deciduous forest, and tundra. He also listed most of the
vegetative types presented by Munz with some changes. Munz9 listed the vegetative types as:
Strand, Salt Marsh, Freshwater Marsh, Scrub, Coniferous Forest, Mixed Evergreen Forest,
Woodland-Savanna, Chaparral, Grassland, Alpine, and Desert Woodland.
Subsequent to the Munz outline the California Native Plant Society formulated its
system, which includes most of the Munz criteria with minor changes. In Barbour and
Major10, the broader categories are called Floristic Provinces. These provinces are:
Californian, Sierran, Pacific Northwest, Great Basin, Hot Desert, and Southern California
Islands. These six Floristic Provinces contain 20 vegetation types or plant communities.
The Floristic Provinces in MRA and Lower Area of the FNMSP are the Californian
Floristic Province and the Pacific Northwest Floristic Province. The plant
communities of the Californian Province in MRA are Mixed Evergreen Forest, and Oak
Woodland. The plant communities of the Pacific Northwest Province in MRA are Redwood
Forest, Coastal Prairie, and Northern Coastal Scrub.

The species composition of each of these floristic provinces and plant communities
has a basic continuity, with species varying in number and abundance by region. A partial list
of the dominant plant species in the above plant communities for MRA, and the lower area, is
given in the Wildlife Section, pages 78-88. .

Vegetative Climax and Seral Stages

The Climax

Another criterion for analyzing a forest is to consider how long ago the forest was
logged or burned by a forest fire, and at what stage of climax it is presently in (Schoenherr12).
The climax concept is used to define plant communities that have existed for centuries or
longer in a climax condition, that is, when the vegetation has achieved stability and changes
are gradual. Whenever natural catastrophes occur such as fires, landslides, and floods, a
climax area becomes sub-climax for a long period. After a heavy logging, hundreds of years
may pass before a redwood forest begins to regain its classic forest appearance, and hundreds
of years or thousands, to return to climax. A. A. Schoenherr12 relates the importance
ecologists place on the concept of climax communities:

The varied mixture of trees and plants of all sizes and ages
represents “climax community,” the natural balance of
plant species that has been attained over centuries. If left
without intervention or natural catastrophe, such complex
ecosystems will sustain their healthy composition indefinitely.
Examples of climax communities are rare, particularly in such
populous places as California; thus, protection for them is all
the more important, for they are easily accessible displays of
nature in its purest form.

Much of the discussion in this Guide will be about ecosystems and plant communities
and their climax status. To understand the formation process of plant aggregations arriving at
a climax plant community, a review of PLANT ECOLOGY by Weaver and Clements13 is
instructive. The following information was derived from their textbook.
The Sere. A sere is the long-term process of reaching vegetative climax from the first
stage of habitat conditions and plants to a potential climax status. The climax plant
aggregation is the product of species competition in an area controlled by topography, soil
conditions, and climate.

At the beginning, the status is early-seral, and near climax becomes late-seral. These are
terms that appear in Timber Harvest Plans.
If the sere process starts in a pond or lake it is called a hydrosere. The stages in sere
sequence in a hydrosere leading to a forest climax are: submerged, floating, reed-swamp,
sedge-meadow, woodland, ending with climax forest. The climax process is not completed
until those tree species present which are best suited to the local conditions become dominant
or co-dominant .
If the sere is forming a climax on rockbed, such as a new lava flow, it is called a
xerosere. The successional stages are: crustose-lichen, foliose-lichen, moss, herbaceous,
shrub, ending in a climax forest.
Within a plant community or ecosystem there may be several seral stages of plants due
to minor disturbances of fire, floods, treefalls, land movements, and human activity. The time
scale may be different due to the severity of the disturbance, but each sere contains its own
process to climax. Weaver and Clements explain:

Beginning slowly, increasing to a maximum, and then gradually

receding, the plant populations of each have made conditions
fit for the next community but often less fit for their own
continuation. 13 (page 71)

In the Mangels Ranch Area, the upper canopy dominance is primarily Shreve oak,
Quercus parvula var shrevei, and/or redwood. Other tree species are present, but do not
become dominant. These are: coast live oak, Quercus agrifolia, Douglas-fir, Pseudotsuga
menziesii, Pacific madrone, Arbutus menziesii, California bay, Umbellularia californica, and a
scattering of western sycamore, Platanus racemosa, arroyo willow, Salix lasiolepis, and big-
leaf maple, Acer macrophyllum. The tanoak, Lithocarpus densifolia, occurs only in the
riparian area of the MRA, apparently the Happy Valley area of MRA (Figure 2) is too dry for
this more mesic plant. The riparian corridor along Mangels Creek does not contain red alder,
Alnus rubra, which is the co-dominant species with big-leaf maple in the riparian area of
Aptos Creek.

Topography, Geology, and Climate

Vegetation in a given area is the result of topography, soil conditions, and climate. In
the MRA, the transcending climate conditions for redwoods are coolness and high air
humidity, and deep valley protection from strong drying winds. In this southern extension of
redwood distribution in California, drought becomes a major factor of survival. The redwood
can survive in areas of occasional light snowfall.

If one were reconstructing climate from stand characteristics

one might infer that drought is more ‘normal’ than the average
is. (L. Reid 14)

Slope dynamics is strongly operative not only in redwood distribution, but for all plant
communities in California coastal ranges where Mediterranean climate prevails.
Edaphic slope orientation to the sun interacts strongly with temperature, humidity, and storms.
Vegetation in a Mediterranean climate, with its long, hot summer, is restricted, especially on
the southward facing slopes which are cloaked with drought-resistant vegetation. In the
MRA’s Happy Valley, the same factors are present, but are at a 90 degree directional
difference because the ridges forming the valley run in a north-south direction. The sun’s rays
increase the drought species on the west-facing slopes which receive the afternoon’s drier air
(fog usually is dissipated by noon) and stronger winds and sun’s rays. The greater dryness of
the west-facing slope in MRA is adverse to most west-facing slope conditions elsewhere in
the redwood range. The following discussion of the slopes in the MRA demonstrates the
strong influence exerted by local climates and topography upon the redwood and associated
plant communities.

East- and West-facing Slopes of The Mangels Ranch Area

The area consists of two virtually north-south oriented ridges - Hawk Point Ridge and
Monte Toyon Ridge (Figure 2). Certain basic climatological and topographical factors have
created three divergent mosaics of plant communities in spite of the fact that they each have
the same rainfall, similar soil conditions, and steepness of slope. The floor of Happy Valley
lies about 200 feet below the ridges. The two steep slopes forming Happy Valley are the west-
facing slope of Monte Toyon Ridge, and the east-facing slope of Hawk Point Ridge (Figure

East-facing Slope of Hawk Point Ridge

Plant growth on the Hawk Point Ridge east-facing slope is dominantly redwood
clusters intermixed with Shreve oak, Douglas-fir, big-leaf maple, California bay, and patches
of Northern Coastal Scrub. During morning hours until about 10 am to 1 pm, the usual fog
concentration blocks the direct rays of the sun rising over Monte Toyon Ridge, allowing the
Hawk Point Ridge east-facing slope to remain cool.
In the afternoon, the sun’s rays do not directly hit this slope. Therefore, the slope
remains cool and moist throughout most of the days of the year because of the topography,
and also because of the presence of over 600 redwood trees which enhance their own cool and
moist micro-environment.14,15

The redwoods on this slope form clusters in which there is little or no vegetation between the
peripheral old-growth trees (see details of cluster formation on pages 62-78).

West-facing Slope of Monte Toyon Ridge

The west facing slope of Monte Toyon Ridge does not receive the sun’s rays until late
morning, and when foggy, is even more cooled. When there is no fog in the afternoon, the
slope receives the afternoon’s direct sun on clear days. The afternoon climate also includes the
drying northwest winds which increase excessive transpiration of all vegetation. This is most
likely why there are no clusters of redwoods on this slope, but only a few scattered redwoods
along with big-leaf maples, both needing to be cool and moist. This west-facing slope has an
almost contiguous canopy of Shreve oak. When large trees fall, seeds of the other plants in the
area can take advantage of the mineral soil exposed in the gaps to receive more sky light and

Southwest-facing Slope of Hawk Point Ridge

Hawk Point Ridge’s southwest-facing slope is steep near the ridge top, but becomes a
more gradual slope when nearing Aptos Creek road (Figure 2). It receives more direct sun and
wind than the slopes inside Happy Valley. The southwest-faced slope on Hawk Point Ridge is
not shadowed in the late afternoon by another close high ridge to the west and receives nearly
full afternoon sunlight and stronger drying north-west winds. The climate conditions on this
more exposed slope favor prairie and scrub plant communities.
Coastal Prairie and Northern Coastal Scrub occupy the lower part of the slope
along with an Oak Woodland of mixed Shreve oak and coast live oak on the upper slope. In
the oak woodland, an almost evenly mixed canopy of oaks is formed, with a few Douglas-firs
mixed in on the upper reaches of this dryer slope. Scrub species border and mix in the
ecotones with the oak woodland and purple needlegrass forming a diverse plant mosaic.
The more common grass and scrub species are purple needlegrass, Nassella pulchra;
Coyote brush, Baccharis pilularis; sticky monkeyflower, Mimulus aurantiacus; California
sagebrush, Artemisia californica; California blackberry, Rubus ursinus; poison oak,
Toxicodendron diversilobum; and bracken, Pteridium equilum.
Several clusters of redwoods on this slope are in east-west oriented gullies having
north-facing slopes. These clusters are redwood stand clusters (see page 62) that do not
create a vacuity of non-growth in the center as in slump jumble clusters in Happy Valley
(see below and 69-71). One stand cluster (Figure 2 E) is in a gully that supports 150 trees.
There are two more stand clusters on the borderline between MRA and state property obtained
before the MRA addition (Figure 2 D).

Soil Types

Soils are the product of the bedrock acted upon by chemical and physical erosion and
vegetation. There are two government soils publications for Santa Cruz County.16,17 Both
show what is evident to the eye, that Happy Valley soils are different than other soils in MRA
and the Lower park area of the FNMSP.
On a map in a soils publication (Raymond Storie, et. al, 1944 16), the Happy Valley
area is distinctly outlined, with the soil borders located directly along the Hawk Point and
Monte Toyon ridges. The soil type is Steep Hugo Loam which appears in FNMSP in the
Happy Valley area, partly in the Pourroy acquisition (Figure 1), and one small area in the
upper park. It is a highly erodable soil found on steep slopes.
The 1980 publication (Roy Bowman et. al, 17) is more definitive for commercial and
recreational uses. The soil type in Happy Valley follows the same ridge lines of Hawk Point
and Monte Toyon ridges as in the 1944 study, but is labeled “112” which is not present
elsewhere in the park (Figure 3). They call “112,” a form of Ben Lomond loam on which: 17

Runoff is rapid to very rapid, and the hazard of erosion is

high to very high.

The 1980 publication reported that this soil type is suited for redwood and Douglas-fir
harvesting, but is not good for camping and picnicking because of its “severe steep” soil
category. This publication reported slopes up to 75% in Happy Valley. Some areas on the
east-facing slope of Hawk Point ridge are sheer cliffs, dripping with water.

Floods, Landslides, and Slump Jumbles

Floods,5,14,18 landslides5 (including slump jumbles), and washouts are important for
plant reproduction of a climax woodland area. Because of the narrow steep sided canyons of
the FNMSP there are no flat alluvial stands that are common in the northern California
redwood area. Fires can clear away vegetation and dying material over mineral soil which
most seedlings need for the tender roots to become established. Fires are rare in MRA, and
seedling reproduction of redwoods and a few other trees species is almost non-existent
without exposed soil from a landslide scar, slump jumble, or root-pull pits and rootwads
formed by uprooted downed trees. As will be described below, redwoods can reproduce
without seedlings by dormant buds sprouting from stump roots, lignotubers, burls, buried
branches, and cuttings.

Figure 3. Soil types in the lower area of Nisene Marks State Park, with emphasis on the highly
erodable Ben Lomond loam extending through Happy Valley to near the Mangels-Van Eck Redwood
in the Mangels Ranch Area. The loam is labeled #112, and is enhanced in this copy. Map from
Bowman, 1980. 13



The Redwood as a Superlative Tree

First, let’s settle three potential problems: the height of a downed Eucalyptus tree in
Australia that was taller than any redwood has not been verified19, and, the Redwood’s Sierra
Nevada foothills cousin, Sequoiadendron giganteum, is uniformly called the Giant Sequoia,
but Sequoia sempervirens may have two common names.

Is the Official Common Name REDWOOD or COAST REDWOOD?

If one follows the taxonomists and field identification authors, the common name is
Redwood for Sequoia sempervirens. The following publications using redwood only are:
Jepson’s original MANUAL OF THE FLOWERING PLANTS OF CALIFORNIA, 1923, Hickman’s18
revision of Jepson’s Manual, 1993, Barbour and Major,10 1988, and Lanner,19 1999. Natural
History writer Verna Johnston,11 1994 also uses redwood throughout, except to say one place
in the book that the redwood is also called the Coast Redwood, and does not include the Giant
Most natural history writers and some researchers use both Coast Redwood and
Redwood, These include Noss5, 2000, Evarts and Popper24, 2001, Richard Rasp54, 1989, and
John LeBlanc, editor of the Proceedings of the 1996 Conference on Coast Redwood Forest
Ecology & Management at Humboldt State University. Of the participants in the 1996
conference at Humboldt State University who submitted papers giving the common name, 30
used redwood only, and 14 used both coast redwood and redwood.
In the natural history and research publications, coast redwood is often used in titles
and some headings, but the tree is referred to as the redwood throughout the rest of the text. I
am following this style in the Guide. To call it “coast redwood” at all times would be a burden
to the reader and writer. I picked 20 pages of text at random in Reed Noss’s book, and
computed that redwood by itself appeared about 1800 times in this publication. In this Guide,
the official common name of “Coastal Redwood” is used in the title, but “Redwood” is used
throughout the text.

The Public’s Imagery of the Redwood

W. J. Libby3 points out that to many people the redwood has an inspirational imagery:

... the substantial volume of poetry about redwoods tends to be

reverential, even mystical.

What creates some of the inspirational imagery, is that the redwood self- prunes

its lower branches when shaded by an upper canopy layer. In a mature redwood forest, self
pruning reveals to the viewer the bottom 50 to 150 feet of huge old-growth trees with bare
trunks and deeply rutted outer bark topped with a thick mass of blue-green needles. The
branches of the oldest redwoods are typically strongly drooping or recurvate, hanging nearly
vertical on some giants (Figure 4.7).
Often only a scattering of understory plants grows in the densely canopied old-growth
areas. These relatively small plants enhance the unique imagery of the over-powering
appearance of the bared lower trunks of the redwood giants.

Official State Trees

The legislature, in separate bills, has listed two official trees for California: the Giant
Sequoia in the Sierra Nevada, and the Coast Redwood (Schoenherr59).

The Tallest Tree in the World

In most of the literature, the tallest tree in the world is the National Geographic Tree
redwood which measured 367.8 feet 12,19,54 in 1963. It is on the wind protected alluvial plane
of Redwood Creek in Redwood National Park.
But, there is confusion and uncertainty which redwood tree is tallest tree in recent
literature. I contacted interpretive specialist James Wheeler of the Redwood National Park and
Dave Stockton at the Humboldt Redwoods State Park natural history center. In August 2004,
they reported there are several redwoods in excess of 369 feet. Two giants are near 370 ft. in
Redwood National Park, and two also nearing 370 ft. in Humboldt Redwoods State Park, 60
miles to the south.
Each tree is growing at a different rate, resulting in occasional changes of the tallest
tree. To complicate matters, a giant tree in Redwoods National Park is nearing the height race,
increasing at a rate of about five feet per year.
The tallest redwood in August, 2005, is the Stratosphere Giant, in Humboldt
Redwoods State Park at 370.2 feet (Preston64-p225). In August 2004, measurements determined
that the Federation Tree in the Humboldt Redwoods State Park, in Founders Grove, was at
369.2 feet. Founders Grove is where the 360 foot Dyerville Giant fell in 1991.55 The
National Geographic Tree in Redwood National Park was at 369.0 feet, and the Mendocino
Tree in Humboldt Redwoods State Park was 368.0 feet tall. The heights are measured by
climbing the trees by Dr. Steve Sillett and crew from Humboldt State University.24, 64

Maximum Diameters of the Redwood and Giant Sequoia

Reed Noss5 includes a table listing the heights and diameters of 40 large redwoods on
public property throughout the range of the redwood. Twenty-six of the trees were over 325
feet in height, and 15 trees had diameters over 20 feet. The redwood is the second widest tree
at 25.8 feet5 dbh (diameter-at-breast-height), surpassed only by the Giant Sequoia at 37.5
feet20 dbh.

The redwood is the fastest growing tree22, and is among the highest for yield of wood
in the world. The redwood has shown good growth in many places in the world, but extensive
redwood forests have not been established in other countries.23

Maximum Ages of the Redwood and Other Very Old Trees and Plants

The redwood reaches at least 2200 years of age. It is surpassed in longevity by

the Giant Sequoia at near 3300 years (Lanner19), the western bristlecone pine, Pinus longaeva
at 4862 years (Lanner19), and the desert dwelling creosote bush, Larrea tridentata, 18,000
years (Schoenherr12).
Other superlatives are that (1), the redwood’s bark is thick and contains only a trace of
oils, making the large trees almost fireproof (2), redwoods reproduce by both seedlings and
sprouts (3), a large percentage of the redwood’s annual water supply in some areas comes
from fog drip off its branchlets falling to the ground to be absorbed by the roots, and (4),
Viers21 mentions that redwood killing diseases are rare, and appear to not die of old age.
The redwood is also genetically unique. Noss:5

Redwood is unusual among conifers in being hexaploid…. It has

66 chromosomes ... whereas most conifers have from 20 to 24.
Because redwood is hexaploid, it is possible to have much
allelic variation within a single individual (i.e. alleles are
alternative forms of the same gene.) ... In short, redwoods
have enormous within-family genetic variability, and we now
have the tools to find and characterize it.

Basic Redwood Structures and Adaptations

Ecologists need to identify the physical structures of the redwood which have
survived many catastrophes of severe climate and wildland fire changes along our coast.
Redwood concentrations had already changed considerably under prehistoric conditions, and,
because of its high economic value, the survival of healthy stands of old-growth forest has
been constantly threatened by human activity. The structures and adaptations the redwood has
developed will be described in the text below and depicted in Figures 4.1 - 4.17, and in
Appendix II. These drawings, not always in sequence as they appeared in the text, are
grouped together here to facilitate finding them when reading the text.

Figure 4.1 Seeds and needles of the redwood, Sequoia sempervirens


Figure 4.2. THE OMEGA REDWOOD. This Residual Old-Growth redwood is one of the few remaining
old-growth trees that were not harvested in the George’s Flat area. It is called THE OMEGA
REDWOOD because nearly all the possible growth structures of a redwood are present on and around
this tree.

Figure 4.3 The Piggyback Redwood Nurse Tree in One of the Clusters (Figure 6, p. 63).

A dying tree (A) near the center of the cluster is probably from a dormant bud in a lignotuber in the
rootwad (B). Sprouts or seedlings are not growing in the root-pull pit (C). The reiterations on the fallen
trunk receive their energy and water from its remaining viable roots (D). These roots are also
contributing energy for the continuing increased size on the treefall trunk as evidenced by the sharp
decline in trunk diameter after each reiteration. The trunk is embedded slightly into the soil in two
sections (E and F), but no roots are entering the ground from the trunk in those areas. In tree species
that have piggyback growth, the trunks must have a viable root system to supply water and energy to
reiterations. The plants in the foreground (G) are bracken, wood fern, and coffeeberry. The understory
area is covered with redwood branchlet litter, and is within the shading influence of surrounding trees.
The large tree (H) is the second largest tree (46 inches dbh) in the cluster. It and the other 13 old-
growth redwoods in the cluster are strongly influencing the growth of the reiterations through
competition for direct sun and sky light, food, and water. This slump jumble cluster (Figure 6) was
formed around 400 to 500 years ago.
The cambium layer is one cell thick. Cambium
cells continually divide, but at higher rates in
summer for reproductive energy and tree
growth. Each cambium cell forms daughter
cells that create the vascular and cork
cambium layers.
Outer Bark. As in the heartwood, tannins and
other phenolics resist pathogenic fungus and
bacteria that enter through fire scars, injury,
and insect damage. Cork cells dominate,
forming rings of alternate growth with other
types of cells. Alternate rings of cork cells and
other cells are laid down annually, but cannot
be used in growth studies. This section of bark
has only eight rings in an area with 50 rings in
the xylem. As in the phloem, the redwood
outer bark has dense fibers. Resinous and
volatile compounds are minimal in the outer
bark, giving fire protection to the tree.
Phloem or Inner Bark. The cells in this layer
are not wood cells. They are living fibrous cells
that transport sugars and other organic
compounds to all parts of the tree for growth
and sustenance. Annual rings are not made in
this layer. The fluid movement is down the
trunk as well as laterally along the limbs and
branchlets. The fibers are highly distinctive in
a cross section of the trunk.
Xylem or Sapwood. These living wood cells
give strength to the bole and transport water
and minerals from the roots to the entire tree
by osmosis. Storage of water also occurs in
this layer. Annual growth rings are formed in
the xylem. The early fast growth occurs in
early spring, and an annual ring is formed at
the end of the late growth period in fall and
Heartwood. The heartwood is dark red due to
concentrations of tannins that are a type of
phenol. The cells are dead sapwood cells that
become hardened and change in color and
form when carbohydrates are no longer
available to the cells abutting the xylem. The
heartwood and roots can succumb to fungal
infections when the bark is removed by injury
or fires, often resulting in fire scars and
chimney trees.

Figure 4.4. Cross section of a 25-inch dbh redwood at 8.4 feet above the ground describing the
functions of cells in the cork and vascular cambium layers. (Results of further study of this tree’s
growth reveals possible reactions of the tree due to increased rainfall, groundwater quality, and light.
See Appendix II.)

Figure 4.15. Key identification features of the Coast Live Oak and Shreve oak. Leaves and acorns are
50% of actual size. The above differences are not always definite, but if at least five acorns or leaves
are inspected from a tree, identification would be reliable. (A hybrid of these species may not be
identified by these criteria).

Figure 4.16.

Nursery Log. This is a 22 foot section of an over 100 feet long decomposed Douglas-fir nursery log. It
lies mostly under the canopy of a large big-leaf maple. California coffeeberry is the dominant plant on
the log. The redwood seedlings appeared about 12 years ago. Other species on the log are big-leaf
maple seedlings, common chickweed, narrow leaf miner’s lettuce, California figwort, bitter-cress, the
fern Polypodium calirhiza, and mosses. The chain fern is rooted under the log.

Figure 4.17. The healing process is shown of a redwood buttress injury in 1982 when the tree was 23
years old and had a diameter of 7.3 inches of vascular cambium. The deposition of vascular and cork
layers are shown at six heights of the bole. The tree was 61 years of age, with a height of over 80 feet.
Forests, Stands, and Groves

A redwood forest is forest in which redwoods are the dominant canopy species.
Treefall gaps and occasional landslides and slump jumble scars, fires, etc., appear in climax
forests creating sites where seedlings of all species present can grow and compete, thus
sustaining a diverse forest structure. Redwoods usually form abrupt mixed ecosystem mosaics
when abutting other distinct plant communities.
In an uneven-aged old-growth stand, redwoods are distributed throughout the stand
with varying degrees of isolation and spacing. This somewhat random and uneven spacing is
caused by varying topographic and geological structures and competitive plant dominance for
space and sun. The redwoods with self-pruned lower bare trunks often have nearly contiguous
canopies including an occasional sub-dominant tree species. Considerable variation in
understory species and abundance occurs in different local physical habitats, and also by
A thick forest of giants is the public’s stereotype of a redwood forest. Splendid
photographs of these old-growth giants are given in an oversized publication Redwoods by
Jeremy Joan Hewes20, and in Evarts and Popper’s24 Coast Redwood.
In deeply shaded areas, redwood seedlings have an advantage over the seedlings of
other tree species. Tanoaks (and to a lesser degree Shreve oaks) are also shade tolerant and
may be dominant over young redwood trees for a short time, inhibiting redwood reproduction.
Eventually, the much faster growing post-sapling redwoods prevail over tanoak competition.
In the silvicultural harvesting method of small-area clearcut plantations, tanoaks are thinned
out, or poisoned.33
A stand is a concentration of trees in a particular location, such as stands of redwoods
on a slope may be different than redwood stands in flat areas. “Stand” is
often used in silviculture discussions.
The term grove of redwoods is usually applied to a special concentration of trees such
as the famed Richardson Grove along Hwy 101 in Humboldt County. In the Lower Area of
FNMSP are the Tillman Memorial Grove and the Jan Carel and Agnes Van Eck Memorial

Treefall Gap, Root-pull Pit, and Rootwad11, 25 (Figs. 6 and 7)

A treefall gap occurs when a treefall creates an opening in a forest canopy. Treefalls
are also called windfalls, blowdowns, and wind-throw, fallen, and downed trees. “Treefall” is
the name used by most writers because not all trees are downed by winds. A tree can also be
dislodged by undercutting erosion by floods and landslides. Locally, oak trees have been
weighted down by climbing English Ivy, Hedera helix.

In the Mangels Ranch Area, this ivy has been removed from nearly all the trees, including
redwoods in the MRA.
If a treefall gap is formed by a tree that broke off and the roots are not affected, soil
may not become accessible for seedling reproduction. However, growth of previously shaded
trees may be enhanced if increased light is available to them. Canopy gaps are part of the
redwood reproduction process. Changes in shading and wind protection will present
opportunities for all the species present to compete.
When the mineral soil has been exposed by an uprooted downed tree, seedlings can
take hold either in the root-pull pit25 or the rootwad24 soil. Exposed soil for seed
reproduction is necessary for vegetation which does not reproduce from sprouting after a fire
or other disturbance. In this area, redwood, tanoaks, California bay and many of the
understory shrubs sprout from dormant buds. Sugihara25 reveals the importance of the treefall
gap in forest ecology:

Fallen trees form an important structural part of the stand due

to the great size and longevity of the logs. Through gap
dynamics the redwood forest continuously renews itself while
maintaining massive tree size, high density, and structural and
biological complexity.25

At first, the process of sere development resulting from a catastrophic event is

competition of the pioneer species26 which can be an assemblage of native species. In the
FNMSP area, aggressive introduced species18 such as Australian fireweed, Erechtites minima;
English ivy; Cape Ivy, Delairea odorata; French broom, Genista monspessulana; and prickly
clover, Trifolium angustifolium are highly invasive.
Some introduced species do not need a treefall gap to establish themselves. Dirt road
or trail construction almost always results in invasive plant establishment in MRA, especially
by the four species mentioned above, along with the forget-me-not, Myosotis latifolia, and
several species of annual grasses introduced from the Mediterranean area.

Harvesting Effects - Percent Remaining of Old-growth Redwoods

Lawrence Fox III27 reported on the degree of removal of old-growth forests:

In 1989, old-growth forest comprised ten percent (207,000

acres) of the land area. The largest and most dense old-growth
redwood occurred on four percent of the natural range. Second-
growth redwood forest classes occurred on 63 percent of the
natural range. Second-growth forests dominated by Douglas-fir
and hardwood species comprised 13 percent of the natural range.

In 2000, Noss5 reported that 93-95 percent of the existing redwood forest on the west
coast is second-growth and third-growth.

Definition of an Old-growth Redwood Tree

In 1998 when attending Timber Harvest Plan hearings, the definition was quite
simple in discussions with timber harvesters and foresters. The definitions of old growth were
those of the California Department of Forestry (CDF) rangers and timber workers who were
complying with the restrictions of the Z’berg-Nejedly Forest Practice Act of 1973. Most of the
research on redwoods has been conducted in the Pacific Northwest coastal area, and at times
the growth patterns and associated species of the redwoods in the northern part of the state are
not the same as in the southern zones, including some areas in Santa Cruz County.
A large old-growth redwood has diagnostic shapes including long strongly drooping
branches, mostly bare lower trunks from self-pruning, and thick coarsely grooved bark. The
main requirement in the northwest heavily logged areas has been for a tree to be around 200
years old. The average size at that age is around 40 inches dbh (see next page) in that area.
Today’s definitions are much more complex and subject to describing the forest, not
just isolated stems. Noss5 (page 87) suggests:

For conservationists to evaluate the ability of management

options to meet the needs of species associated with old-growth
redwoods, some understanding of the specific habitat
requirements of the species is desirable, as well as a general
understanding of the characteristics of the old-growth forest.

There is no generally accepted or universally applicable

definition of old-growth ... specifying exact age ranges for
late-successional and old-growth forests is impossible because
of variations in climate, soil quality, disturbances, and
numerous other factors.

The USDA Northwest Forest Plan perpetuates the confusion. Tuchman et. al.28
suggested that:

... as a general rule, late-successional (late-seral) forest as

those with trees at least 80 years old and old-growth forest as
a ‘subset of late-successional forest with trees 200 years or

One of the more clear forest harvesting conditions for determining an old-growth tree
is a forest area which has never been logged. The trees represent a large range of sizes because
of the differences in growth rates in response to topography, soil fertility, light, and
atmospheric and soil water content.
In the Mangels Ranch Area, the average size of a 200 year old tree is around 32 inches
dbh, with a wide range of sizes at that age. One can utilize the official size/age criteria for a
mature redwood, and state that all trees in the MRA over 24 inches in dbh are old-growth.
But, in a residual forest (one that has been logged but with large old-growth trees remaining)
it is difficult to determine whether 30 or 40 year old tree is a slow growing old-growth tree or
a fast-growing second-growth tree. A fast growing second-growth tree could be as large as a
slow growing old-growth tree. The shape of the tree is significant because redwoods change
branch structure with age. On a young tree, the branches extend outward, sometimes bending
upward at the tips (Fig. 4.6). On very old trees, the branches droop strongly downward (Fig.
4.7). For more information, Noss5 has a detailed account of the criteria for an old-growth tree.

Forestry Criteria by Extent of Logging

Unlogged Old-growth Forests - (First Generation Redwoods)

From 1883 to 1923, nearly all the old-growth FNMSP forest redwoods were harvested.
The only unlogged old-growth forest in FNMSP is in Happy Valley where there are more
than 600 unlogged redwoods over two inches in diameter, covering about 60 acres. Except for
30 isolated redwoods, the redwoods in Happy Valley are concentrated in 33 clusters on the
east-facing slope of Hawk Point Ridge. Each cluster has a contiguous canopy of redwood
branches and needles with very little or no understory vegetation in the center. About 60
percent of the trees are old-growth using old-growth limb shape and bark features, and an
approximate age of 200+ years using dbh trunk diameters over 31 inches in diameter.
Diameter-at-breast-height (dbh) is 4.5 feet from the ground level. It is measured by
using calipers, electronic instruments, or by dividing the circumference by pi (3.14159) for
diameter (girth or width).

The distance of 4.5 feet from the ground for a dbh measurement is to avoid the expanding
buttress of a redwood (Figs. 4.2 and 4.17) which may vary considerably by size and age of the
tree. Also, if the tree has developed a large thick burl at the base near the ground, the burl
would exaggerate the volume of the tree when calculating the board feet of lumber.
The east-facing slope of Hawk Point Ridge (Figure 2), is a Redwood-Mixed
Evergreen29 climax forest dominated by redwood in clusters. Except for two clusters that
were logged, the redwood cluster areas and associated plants are at late seral and climax. No
recent natural changes in the vegetation due to fires and land movement have been observed.
Treefalls of two Douglas-firs, four redwoods, twelve Shreve oaks, and one Pacific madrone
were recorded in the past six years on this slope.

Residual Forests30,31,32,33

Residual is used to identify a stand of redwoods that has been logged but has old-
growth trees remaining. The number of old-growth trees contributing to the remaining canopy
determines whether it is called a residual old growth or residual second growth forest.

Residual Old-growth Forest

This term applies to a forest in which there was a minimal selective cut of trees,
leaving a predominantly old-growth canopy.
Marcel’s Forest in the Pourroy property acquisition is an example of a residual old-
growth forest. This stand of forest was logged many years ago but later than the Loma Prieta
period. About 300 redwoods remain, many of them old-growth. The Pourroy acquisition could
be classified as mostly mid-seral with areas approaching late-seral where old-growth trees
dominate the canopy.
The Advocate Tree is in Marcels Forest near Aptos Creek. It has the greatest diameter
of redwoods in the park with 11.6 feet dbh. However, the official definition of dbh possibly
becomes too restrictive in describing the totality of this tree for purposes other than
harvesting. The dbh is officially measured from the uphill or “topside”. If the measurement of
The Advocate Tree circumference is made on the topside or uphill side, the dbh is 11.6 feet. If
the diameter could be measured at dbh from the lower or downhill side, it’s width would be
13.2 feet. The latter measurement gives a more realistic size of the tree, but it cannot be used
to compare its diameter with another tree. If measured at the ground, it is over 14 feet in
diameter. The second widest tree in the Lower Area of FNMSP is the Mangels-Van Eck
Redwood at 11.2 feet dbh (Figure 2).

Residual Second-growth Redwood Forest

If the cut was heavy, leaving only scattered old-growth trees, and their canopy is not
contiguous over much of the stand, the forest becomes residual second-growth. It is residual
because a few old-growth trees are present.
A residual second-growth forest stand with a few old-growth trees is along the
Mangels creek riparian trail in the MRA (Figure 2). This area contains the Mangels-Van Eck
Redwood. Most of this area is probably early-seral because there was a timber harvesting
about 60-80 years later than the Loma Prieta cutting.
Other possible residual second-growth clusters in MRA are on the border with
previously owned state property (Figure 2, D). These are logged stand clusters, but there may
be a few old-growth trees to call them residual second-growth stands.

Second-Growth Forest - (Second Generation Redwoods)

Nearly all the areas logged during the Loma Prieta lumbering period from 1880-1930
in what is now the FNMSP, were clearcut. Massive sprouting with some seedling
reproduction has resulted in an almost even-aged second-growth forest. With additional young
trees entering the stand each year, the logged areas of the forest are tending slowly toward an
uneven-aged forest.
The Loma Prieta clearcut operation also entailed removal of non-harvestable
redwoods (termed trash or culls), and most of the broadleaf evergreens such as Pacific
madrone, tanoak, coast live oak, and Shreve oak.
Today, if the harvest is a clearcut, the returning trees at first form an even-aged forest.
After a clearcut operation, when two-year old nursery redwoods are planted and competitive
trees such as tanoak are removed or killed by spraying, the stand is called a plantation, or
tree farm.34
A second-growth redwood stand in MRA of about 150 redwoods that has been logged
is on the west-facing slope of Hawk Point ridge (Figure 2, E). It is on the north-facing side of
a gully. Two of the clusters on the top of Hawk Point ridge were clearcut and are now second-

Third-growth Forest - (Third Generation Redwoods)

Second-growth harvesting has taken place in the Lower Area of the park.
A large zone of second-growth in the Lower Area from the steel bridge to the kiosk, was cut
again in the early 1960’s, resulting in a third-growth forest. The owners of the Lower Area
harvested second-growth redwoods west of Aptos Creek from the steel bridge (Figure 1) to
about the southern trail head of the Terrace trail at Aptos creek, and on the east side of the
creek near the kiosk.

Many young redwood clones are sprouting on and around the newer stumps that are
intermixed with highly degenerated at least 80-100 year old stumps of the Loma Prieta period.
Since many of the Loma Prieta second-growth trees were not cut and with more third-growth
young sprouts surviving, the present forest is uneven-aged.

Redwood Distribution - Past and Present

Redwoods originated during the Age of Dinosaurs: Johnston11 relates:

Fossils indicate that one hundred million years ago Redwoods of

a dozen species spread widely over western North America,
Europe, and Asia in a climate much milder than today’s. Ice
ages, volcanic eruptions, uplifts of mountain ranges,
continental drift, and drastic climate changes all took their
toll on population survival over the millennia.11

In all the world, only three Genera and species of “redwoods” remain: the Dawn
Redwood, Metasequoia glyptostroboides of Asia, the Coast Redwood, Sequoia sempervirens,
and Giant Sequoia, Sequoiadendron giganteum.5, 9,11, 20
The climatic conditions for the redwood restricts it to the moist maritime climate of
the central and northern California coast. The redwood’s range extends 15 miles into Oregon,
in the Chetco River drainage, Curry County, and south to Salmon Creek in Monterey County
near the San Luis Obispo county line.35 It extends east up to 45 miles from the coast in the
northern section, forming a band of redwoods from 6 to 30 miles wide.3 Due to warmer and
drier climate to the south, the redwood remains primarily in deep canyons south of Monterey.
There are pockets of large redwood trees in the Big Sur canyon areas south of Monterey.

Sea Salt Desiccation

Needle desiccation and tree mortality can occur to redwoods by ocean winds near the
shore. Dehydration of the needles is caused by sea salt aerosol containing sodium,
magnesium, sulfur, and boron.2, 36 FNMSP is apparently beyond the negative influence of
this aerosol. Viers also points out that sea salts can dehydrate and kill redwood seedlings.21

Seed Germination

Viers21 concludes that Pleistocene climate changes have “ended seed production”.
This may not be entirely so, but without sprouts from dormant basal buds, the redwood is at a
great disadvantage in competition with other plants unless floods, landslides, treefall gaps, and
low intensity fires occur creating areas where redwood seedlings can survive.

The branchlets (Figure 4.1) contain rows of needles on the sides. There are two forms of
needles, the flat spreading needles of the lower branches, and the short stiff pointed needles
near the crown. The crown needles, which can be seen on the ground after a strong wind, are
exposed to full sun and drying winds, and are structured to reduce transpiration.
The reproductive branchlets remain on the limbs for three to five years until they
become shaded by new branchlet growth. However, in full sunlight with little shading,
individual branchlets can remain on a limb for up to 15-20 years.24 In autumn, these bright
yellow-orange branchlets make up the colorful surface litter of the redwood forest floor.
Evarts and Popper24 explain the reproductive structures. The:

...redwood is monoecious, which means that male and female

reproductive parts are present on the same plant. Pollen cones
(male) and ovulate cones (female) are borne on the tips of
different branches. (During) ... October-March the male
conelets release streams of pollen. As the pollen grains drift
and descend through the canopy, some settle in female conelets.
... Fertilization takes place about four to eight weeks later.

Redwood female cones mature through the summer, and by mid-winter start shedding
their seeds as the next generation of female cones are being fertilized (Figure 4.1).

Becking37 studied a mature redwood tree which produced 1000-1500 cones annually,
each conelet containing from 16-26 scales totaling 60-180 seeds (Figure 4.1). This calculates
to at least 1,000,000 seeds for this large mature tree. This sounds very impressive and seems
to represent a high reproductive rate, but redwoods have a very low germination rate because
of pathogenic fungi present in the seed cones. In Mendocino County, there was an average of
only 13% of sound (able to be fertilized) seeds, and in Humboldt county, mature trees
averaged only about 20% sound seeds. Nevertheless, Ronald Lanner19, muses:

If trees could think, redwood would probably be described as

having an un-quenchable will to live. Even relatively young
trees bear abundant crops of tiny, pollen-bearing male cones,
and small, semi-woody seed cones.

Survival of Seedlings

Fertilization is initiated in December-January on warmer clear days between storms.

Nevertheless, pollen grains will rupture and be destroyed upon contact with moisture. Pollen
shedding is repeated several times during the winter. Dropped conelets often have sprouting
seeds within the scales.37 When the tree is under physiological stress it will produce large
quantities of heavy seed. After the heavy flooding in 1964, a high survival of seedlings
occurred, with germination rates increasing from a normal of 1.01% to 8.95%.37
After the 1964 flood, masses of seedlings appeared which in places resembled a
“lawn” surface, but very few of them survived due to poor light conditions, root com-petition,
and soil moisture stress. Where there is deep duff, pathogenic fungi contributes to mortality of
seedlings called damping-off. Noss5 lists 319 species and subspecies of fungi associated
with the redwood, twenty of which are pathogenic. Here is Becking’s conclusion on the
success of seedling reproduction:

From the millions of established seedlings only one might

become a giant tree upon severe selection, by luck and chance.37

Tannins and Phenolics

Tannins are a higher molecular form of phenol. Several of these anti-pathogen

substances protect the wood of the redwood from fungal and insect attacks. At the time of the
development of the archegonia, in an attempt to counter destruction of seeds by pathogens, the
tree will produce higher levels of phenolic crystals that kill the pathogens.24


Mycorrhizae are of different forms of fungi in the duff, humus, and soil that are
essential to the redwood and other plants.5 Strands of these fungi invade the radical or
growing tip of the root, assisting the plant in absorbing nutrients from the soil. Redwood root
radicals do not have root hairs.

Determining the Age of a Redwood

Aging is done by counting annual rings on stumps or harvest logs (Figure 12).
However, Paul Zinke36 reminds us that there may be discontinuous rings in trunks. From the
work of Fritz and Averall, 1924,38 decades are accurate enough for annual ring counts for
redwoods. Hewes20 tells us why a growth ring may not appear:

In very old trees, ... the number of growth rings can be

misleading. In some instances an annual ring may not have
reached the level of the stump, because the rings begin at the
tree’s crown. In other instances, the pattern of growth rings
may be distorted owing to a fire scar or buttress on one side
of the trunk.

The implication in Hewes’ report is that the annual growth initiates at the crown of the
tree. However, as can be plainly seen each spring, the onset of new needle growth of redwood
starts with bright light-green soft needles, not only at the crown but simultaneously at the tips
of each branch along the entire trunk.
This growth pattern is explained by plant physiologist Katherine Esau39 in her text

The primary growth, initiated in the apical meristems, expands

the plant body, increases its surface and its area of contact
with air and soil, and eventually produces the reproductive

One reason why a tree would stop growing during this new growth time would be the
physiological stress of fire damage. Many naturalists like to compare the Coast redwood with
the Giant Sequoia. Redwood conelets produce seeds in one year, but Verna Johnston11
reminds us that Giant Sequoia cones can mature in two years, and that the cones can remain
green and attached to the Giant Sequoia tree for as many as 20 years. Age of the Giant
Sequoia tree female cones is determined by counting annual growth rings on the cone.11

Official Size Classification of Redwoods Based on dbh Diameter

Lawrence Fox III27 lists the size range classifications for redwoods: 1-6 inches are
saplings, 7-11 inches dbh are small trees, 12-24 inches dbh are medium trees, and greater than
24 inches dbh are large trees. It is assumed that seedlings and sprouts are under one inch in

Nursery Logs, Nurse Trees, and Nurse Plants

Of all the life history descriptions of the redwood, the most confusing and uncertain
terminology concerns “nursery logs”, “nurse trees”, nurse plants”, and reiterations.
Descriptive words of these behaviors are not uniform among researchers. In this Guide, I use
the following brief definitions followed by more complete descriptions below:

A Treefall is a downed tree. It can be either dead or alive. For the tree to be alive
requires that a portion of its roots must remain in the ground and be viable.
A Nursery Log is a dead treefall which has deteriorated sufficiently to expose the inner
bark and xylem wood layers, and has seedlings of any species on it.
A Nurse Tree or Nurse Plant is living, and can be standing or be a living treefall on the
ground with viable roots that gives support or protection to another plant.
A Snag is a dead standing tree or a part of a dead standing trunk (Figure 4.13).

Nursery Log

A deteriorating log can become a nursery log. Nursery is used here instead of nurse
because a nursery is where plants are grown from seeds, cuttings, and clones. As the nursery
log deteriorates, plants and many organisms continue to thrive and compete for nutrients and
space for possibly hundreds of years. During this time, ecosystems are evolving in and on the
log, supplying energy and contributing to the biological complexity of the redwood forest.
Sugihara25 states:

Fallen trees form an important structural part of the stand due

to the great size and longevity of the logs. Through gap
dynamics, the redwood forest continuously renews itself while
maintaining massive tree size, high density, and structural and
biological complexity.

Noss5 and others40 report that seedlings of many plants, including redwood, can sprout
on deteriorating downed logs. However, Sugihara25 agrees with other researchers that
redwoods, unlike western hemlock, Tsuga heterophylla, and Sitka spruce, Picea stichensis,
have little success of a seedling reaching tree size if it is growing on a nursery log, because the
roots will not establish in rotten wood - mineral soil is necessary:

Fallen trees do not act directly as ‘nurse logs’, and no canopy

trees appeared to have originated on logs. Redwood seedlings do
germinate and grow on logs, and it is likely that individuals
growing on logs that were buried by sediment deposits would be
in good position to develop a root system at the new soil

Floods in the thick alluvial forests along the northern California rivers add new layers
of soil about every 30-40 years.

The redwoods then grow a new layer of roots in the new soil.5,11,36

Verna Johnston11 describes other plant growths and competition on a nursery log:

The Spruce-Hemlock Nature Trail at Patrick’s Point State Park,

leads to some of the much touted ‘Octopus Trees’ that form a
regular part of the North Coastal Forests. When a tree falls in
a spruce-hemlock forest, its prostrate trunk offers a sudden
new available surface upon which plants can grow - a bonanza to
whatever can get there first. The competition in this moist
environment is fierce, with mosses, liverworts, ferns, wild
flowers, shrubs, and spruce and hemlock seedlings all in the

Note that Evarts and Popper24 and Verna Johnston11 do not use “nurse” or “nursery”
reference in their descriptions above. Sugihara25 mentioned “nurse log” for downed
deteriorating trees, but I have not read this elsewhere except in L. Eifert’s booklet THE
An Octopus Tree is a Sitka spruce which extends its roots down through the weak
areas of the rotting nursery log, reaching the ground on swollen strong roots. When the
nursery log disappears, the spruce is left standing on its “octopus” shaped roots. A large
amount of Sitka spruce reproduction is on dead nursery logs. Seedlings on redwood nursery
logs rarely become standing trees with roots.
In the MRA, a decomposing Douglas-fir nursery log (4.5 feet in diameter) is near
Cluster # 21 (Figures 2 and 4.16). On the dorsal surface are three redwoods (54, 32, and 30
inches in height), nine large and 12 small coffeeberry bushes, and, in damp weather in winter,
a profusion of the fern Polypodium on the sides.
I have not encountered in the literature a downed deteriorating redwood called a nurse
tree except for the 1971 following statement by Bakker: 1 (page 110)

So-called nurse trees are downed logs which are fertile

substitutes for seedlings growing like well-behaved school
children in line on the upper surface of a decaying trunk.

Nurse Tree and Nurse Plant

The foregoing discussion on nursery logs does not mean to suggest that nurse tree or
nurse plant are not a valid descriptive phrases.

Noss5 in his glossary describes a nurse tree as a tree “That provides support, shade, or
other benefits to another plant.”

Examples of Reed Noss’s general title of nurse trees and nurse plants appear in
Schoenherr:12(page 454)

Germination of Joshua Tree seeds occurs in association with

abundant winter precipitation, but young Joshua Trees are
usually gnawed off by rodents. It seems that the only Joshua
Trees that escape predation are those that germinate under
protective cover of shrubs known as nurse plants, which include
a variety of species. After three to four years the Joshua Tree
emerges from the canopy of its host and eventually replaces it.
... As in Joshua Trees, the rare seedlings of Desert Agave
require a nurse plant. In this case, the seeds that germinate
are usually under the desert bunch-grass known as Galleta
Grass, Hilaria rigida. It has been determined that Galleta
Grass provides necessary shade and increased soil nitrogen for
the Desert Agave seedlings.12(pages 461-462)

Considering the large number of growth forms of sprouting redwoods and their
interaction with other species, “nurse” tree is too inclusive. In the Mangels Ranch Area,
California bay, arroyo willow, and oaks including the Shreve oak often are competing for
light and nutrients and affecting each other when abutting the redwood clusters. There are
several unique redwood growth patterns including the Piggyback Tree (Figures 4.3 and 6).

Role of Fog Drip

Todd Dawson41, noted that fog drip from redwood foliage could be as much as two
inches or more a day. In his study in northern California, fog is heaviest from 0700 to 1000
hours, and is at a minimum in mid-afternoon at 1500 hours. Fog concentration follows the
same hourly pattern in MRA, but fog drip is not as abundant in the MRA. It can be
determined from the stable hydrogen isotope methodology whether the water in the plant was
from rain, ground water, or fog drip. The total annual moisture input from fog drip was
between 22-58 % in Humboldt County, 26-44% in Mendocino County, and 12-18% in
southern areas. Fog drip is uncommon in the Happy Valley redwoods and may be negligible
for cluster use.

Lack of fog drip may be a major limiting factor for redwoods in Happy Valley. Dawson41

It is also possible that both redwood seedlings and understory

plant species which require forest conditions to regenerate
including fog drip and cool temperatures could disappear if the
integrity of the redwood forest is disrupted.

Fog moisture can be directly absorbed through redwood needles, but it is apparently
of lesser importance. Looking at all effects of fog, Dawson concludes from
several studies that:41

Hydrological studies have shown that moisture input to the

redwood forests from fog can constitute between 30-75% of the
annual water budget, and claims were made that fog may serve as
a potential source of water for plants.

Role of Litter, Duff, and Humus

The accumulation of leaves and forest debris on the forest floor develops into three
distinct zones. The top layer of new leaves without deterioration is litter. The next layer
where decomposition is taking place but the leaves can be identified as to species is duff, and
when the bottom material is decayed to the point that the original species source is not
recognizable, it becomes humus (Figure 4.12).
In redwood literature, the entire deposition of fresh and decomposing vegetative
material is often called “litter”, except when a particular layer is being discussed. “Litter”
over several feet thick has been noted, but in the Aptos area it is rarely more than 6 inches
thick. There are up to 20 fungal pathogens in the duff which attack the roots and kill
seedlings. This is called damping-off.
Redwood seedlings can establish in duff, on logs, in debris, and in low light intensity
as long as adequate water and light are available. It is necessary for seedlings to sprout and
survive on mineral soil. This occurs primarily after a low intensity fire, on a landslide or
slump jumble scar, on flood alluvium, or on soil exposed in a treefall gap either in the root-
pull pit or on the rootwad.25,37
Evarts and Popper24 report:

... coarse, woody litter does not retain moisture as

efficiently as the underlying soil, and seedling roots can
quickly dry out if they are not well established in mineral
earth ... for redwoods ... lack root hairs.

If the seedlings live through these conditions, they may be consumed by banana slugs,
brush rabbits, parasitic nematodes, gray millipedes, deer, woodrats, and mice.
Too little or too much sunlight are problems for redwood growth. The redwood is
shade tolerant, and the seedlings can subsist in medium light levels under a canopy layer of
60-80 percent.24 But, under full dense canopies of old-growth, especially inside slump jumble
clusters (see pages 69-71), seedlings may not survive. Evarts and Popper show how too much
bright sun can be lethal for redwoods:

In a full-sun location, a redwood will develop slowly because

it must contend with moisture loss from high rates of

In spite of all this extremely poor seed production, the redwood has thrived throughout
most of its range under natural conditions. The mature uncut forests are stable, because once a
large redwood stand becomes established, it has a long life as reported by Viers:21

Because of their longevity, only 2.5 trees per acre must reach
canopy status each century in order to maintain the less
severely disturbed stand on mesic sites in the northern part of
their range. (emphasis mine)

Role of Fire

Fire is beneficial to redwoods because seedling reproduction can be enhanced by low

intensity fires. Evarts and Popper24 describe the process:

A low intensity fire, prior to seed fall is especially

beneficial: it removes forest floor duff and kills soil
pathogens, but does not leave the hard soil surface that
typically forms after a hot sustained fire.24

Fire Scars Creating Changes in Growth Rings

If a fire is strong enough or there is repeated erosion of the bark from low intensity
fires, the cork cambium layer can be damaged leaving a fire scar that will be evident in a
disruption of the growth ring pattern.

Repeated burning can initiate heartrot, and with each additional fire, the burning of the
accumulated dead wood may create larger fire cavities. Sometimes these fire scars may extend
up through the middle of a tree for over a hundred feet forming a chimney tree (Figure 4.10).
After a fire has removed or diminished the canopy, the increased light available to the
remaining redwoods may increase growth, resulting in widening of the annual growth rings
(Figure 12). This annual increase in xylem growth may last for many years until there is
returning competition for light from adjacent trees. The annual rings will then narrow with
increased shading.

Mean Fire Interval (MFI)

Fire is a common subject for discussions of the redwood among naturalists and
students. The debate whether to suppress fires is a major problem in our spreading population,
because many people move into fire prone areas of the state, and then want the vegetation
removed. Or, if the scrub had been thinned from past fires and has grown to be dangerously
thick, the need for removal or thinning may become necessary. But, ecologists are concerned
about the health of ecosystems under repeated controlled burns in a vegetative community
which had achieved climax status in an area of few fires.
If the Mean Fire Interval (MFI) is lowered in an area, it would mean the fires
became more frequent, i.e., a 500 year average interval is a high MFI average frequency, and
a 20 year mean interval of occurrence would be a low MFI frequency.
To clarify, a lower MFI means fires are closer together and more numerous - 20 years is a
lower number, but with five times as many fires than when the fires are 100 years apart with a
high MFI.
These data are from a valuable publication available to forest managers and ecologists
written by Jason Greenlee and Jean Langenheim in 1990.42 Greenlee received his Doctorate
at UCSC43 on this subject working primarily in Big Basin State Park. The following is a
combination of paraphrasing and quoting the essential criteria and findings for this Guide. As
throughout this Guide, the quotes are indented and in a different font than the paraphrasing.
One of the biggest problems confronting plant ecologists has been to separate the
effects of climatic and edaphic influences on vegetative patterns. Now, especially in
California‘s coastal ranges, Greenlee and Langenheim supply empirical data about the
frequency and effects of fire. I am presenting their contribution by describing the five Fire
Regimes: Lightning-volcanic, Aboriginal, Spanish-Mexican, Anglo, and Recent. The MFI in
these Regimes trends from a high MFI in the Lightning-Volcanic Regime to the lower MFI
and more fires in the more recent regimes.

Lightning-Volcanic Fire Regime - up to 11,000 years BP

The native plant species evolved with fires caused only by lightning and volcanic
action. The occurrence of these factors at any point on earth over millions of years has
changed radically. Changes in topography, humidity, temperature, and climate affect the
intensity of lightning strikes and their ability to start fires. All of the fire regimes sustained
shortened fire frequency subsequent to the Lightning Regime.
The lightning period in this area lasted up to 11,000 BP, when Aboriginal fire effects
began in California:

... lightning fires covered approximately 37% of the redwood

forest,(20% of the land surface) of Santa Cruz County in a 50
yr. period (1929-1979). ... Santa Cruz County has one of the
lowest recorded incidents of lightning fires in California. ...
From 1893 to 1979, only 101 lightning storms were recorded in
Santa Cruz County, igniting 34 fires. Ninety-one of these
occurred during the moist winter season, with only one fire
resulting, and the remaining 10 storms started 33 fires. ...
Some of these ignitions show little potential for becoming
large fires.42

There were fewer large lightning fires in the Aptos area compared to the higher and drier
zones near Big Basin (Figure 5).

Aboriginal Fire Regime - 11,000 BP to 1792 A.D

This regime started in 11,000 BP and ended when the Spanish arrived in 1792:

In contrast to lightning fires, Aboriginal burning was more

frequent and occurred in the lowlands rather than the upper
slopes of the mountain ranges. Lightning fires were still
occurring in the Aboriginal regime but natural MFI was
decreased in coastal areas by the spread of accidental and
deliberate human fires.

Only selected areas were purposely burned by Aborigines, and it appears that redwood
forests were spared from this stress in the northern areas, not only during the Lightning
regime, but also during the Aboriginal Fire Regime:

Because of the presence of grizzly bears and the lack of

important food resources they often did not venture into the
redwood or mixed evergreen forests. Estimates of the

Figure 5. Number and distribution of wildfires in Santa Cruz County between 1929 and 1979. The data
for the Lightning and Recent Fire Regimes shows the location of fires over 10 acres in area. Recent
Fire Regime fires were more scattered throughout the county, and of smaller average size compared
to the Lightning Fire Regime fires. Figure from Greelee and Langenheim. 43 1983

frequency of Aboriginal burning in California very widely, but

annual burning of prairies has been documented for the Monterey
Bay area. (They relate)... evidence of an 82-yr MFI in a southern
redwood drainage during the Aboriginal regime, and Aboriginal
fires, like lightning fires occurred in the autumn, but some
spring burning could have taken place.42

There are many reasons why Aborigines set wild fires, and accidental fires occurred
with them as it does in all human regimes:42

... at the time of first European contact, fire was being used
in California to cook, cremate the dead, burn fleas out of
infested shelters, remove vegetation to make travel easier and
to prevent surprise attack, flush wildlife, harass enemies,
provide building materials, encourage certain plants such as
the hazel(Corylus californica)(now C.cornuta)and reduce
potential fire hazard around villages.

Circumstantial evidence supports aboriginal burning in the oak

woodlands; early travelers reported that these woodlands were
free of chaparral shrubs and other understory, and this effect
was most likely produced by burning. Because the Spaniards
found prairies along the coast we can assume an MFI of less
than 15 yr existed here during the Aboriginal regime.

Grass was dominant along the coastal plateaus because grass burns rapidly,
suppressing further woody plant invasion by killing regeneration of some scrub plants.
Trees are usually little affected by grass fires.

Spanish-Mexican Fire Regime - 1792 to 1848

Although documentation of Spanish and Mexican burning is negligible, a new regime

certainly began shortly after Portola’s exploration in 1769. Aboriginal burning declined
because of cultural changes. The Spanish increased burning in some areas to clear land for
grazing, while preventing fires in agricultural areas.

While the aborigines were free, the government made regulations

against burning to protect the summer and autumn standing hay
crop, which was required for cattle. Despite these sanctions,
Spanish rancheros began to burn chaparral and oak woodland to
expand pastures. ...

In the prairie overgrazing, a change in the kind of grazing

animals and grazing patterns, cultivation, and fire suppression
gradually led to the replacement in most areas of native
perennial grasses by exotic annual species. The Spanish regime
is best represented by frequent human ignitions occurring
within the boundaries of ranchos.42

Anglo Fire Regime - 1848 to 1929

The 100 year “winning” of the West was a grand ecological “loser.” The Manifest
Destiny exploitation of the vast natural resources of the West happened extremely fast and
thoroughly. We witnessed the demise of millions of buffalo, extinction of the passenger
pigeon, and the extermination of the beaver in many areas. These disasters were accompanied
by changing the prairie grasslands to include cattle grazing, wheat, hay fields, and the
economic frenzy to cut timber for lumber and hardwoods for fuel for the rapidly expanding
economy and population. The average size of the American family during this time was
around five children per family. It is now a little over two. Uncontrolled forest management
was without consideration of continued future supplies of lumber. Greenlee and Langenheim42

As Anglos moved into the Santa Cruz Mountains, logging became a

dominant activity; by 1880 fifty logging mills were operating
in the area. To aid removal of logs, logging slash was burned
in place. Since control lines were not used, fires frequently
escaped. Where these human-caused fires burned under extreme
weather conditions in heavy fuels, they were not usually
stopped by a change in weather or by minor barriers. Newspapers
from this time described these as large intense conflagrations
which frequently became crown fires. Fires often escaped
control; by 1888 the State Forester considered escaped logging
fires to be a major problem. Simultaneously, Anglo stockmen in
the south and on the coast continued the practice of burning
chaparral. The southern ranges had little timber, but burning
was used extensively in attempts to convert chaparral into
pasture and farmland.
Fire scars dating from the Anglo regime support our
scenario in indicating that the entire logged inland portion of
the county was burned over at least once and in many places two
or three times during this regime.

In contrast to the Aboriginal and Spanish eras, these fires

generally occurred in the inland rather than costal zone, and
were larger, more frequent, and more intense than previous
lightning fires.

Recent Fire Regime - 1929 to present

The year 1929 ushered in a new America. Not only did the near laissez faire economic
binge reach a breaking point with the Depression, but because of the damage to the
environment, all governments - national, state, and county - enacted protective restrictions to
resource extraction, with emphasis on the forests.
Greenlee and Langenheim42 relate what happened in Santa Cruz County:

In the Recent regime, the MFI in the redwood vegetation type is

trending back to 130 yr in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Because
of efficient fire suppression, prairies also are not burning at
previous rates in the Recent fire regime.

In Recent Fire Regime, MFI in chaparral may be as great as 155

yr in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and we observed in Big Basin
that Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) is invading chaparral
as a result. Based on these observations and on our estimates
of prehuman fire occurrence, we propose that chaparral and
prairies are now much smaller than in the early part of this
century, when human burning must have greatly expanded these
two vegetation types to their peak coverage. This increasing
MFI also suggests that we can expect more intense fires in the

The demands today to protect redwood forest ecosystems include basic research of the
environment and autecology of many species such as the spotted owl, Strix occidentalis;
marbled murrelet, Brachyramphus marmoratus; tailed frog, Ascaphus truei; northern
goshawk, Accipiter gentilis; and the possibly extinct Humboldt marten, Martes americana
humboldtenis. Silvicultural practices today establish sustainable yield forest management,
which includes protection for threatened and endangered species. Ecologically sound fire
control programs also need attention. In the Recent Fire Regime in Santa Cruz County, there
were more widely scattered but smaller human caused fires compared to lightning fires
(Figure 5).

Fire Scars, Fire Cavity, Chimney Tree, and Goosepens

The most visual evidence of ground fires in a redwood forest is burned bark near
ground level of big trees. Fires may initiate or increase the effect of heartrot fungi to form a
fire cavity or goosepen45. In the northern part of the state, a large fire cavity was called a
goosepen when it was used to pen geese (Figure 4.2).
A fire cavity is usually on the upper hillside of a tree because of the accumulation of
woody debris on the uphill side of the tree: Evarts and Popper24 relate:

When a ground fire travels uphill, it usually transfers more

heat to the uphill face of a redwood. A greater accumulation of
fuel, also with the fire’s reflected heat, intensifies the
fire’s effect of the tree’s upper side. As a result, most fire
scars are located on a redwood’s uphill side.

Most of the downed large redwoods in MRA have a large burn cavity. The old snag in
MRA (The Spire, Figure 4.13) extends upward about 25 feet on one side that had a large fire
cavity. A chimney tree may start as a cavity but continues to burn out the dead center wood,
sometimes up for over 100 feet (Figure 4.10).

How These Fire Data Relate to the Mangels Ranch Area

Wildfires are becoming an ecosystem protection problem due to the fires in the
chaparral, brush, and oak woodland plant communities of Southern California in 2003. In fact,
throughout the United States forest and woodland areas, ecologists have a growing concern
about thinning understory growth and diseased trees to prevent devastating fires. There is
some justification for the concern about uncontrollable fires in dry brush and tree areas.
Ecologists realize that some plant communities need occasional low intensity fires for
reproduction and space, whereas other ecosystems have evolved without high intensity fires.
Some of these ecosystems could possibly be endangered by burning too often.
Most of the fires in Santa Cruz county were in the Big Basin area where
Greenlee and Langenheim did their basic work. On page 42 is a map of the Santa Cruz area
where the incidences of lightning fires were presented. Note the lack of major lightning fires
in the FNMSP area (Figure 5). I have not seen evidence of lightning damage to trees in the

My wife and I have seen and heard hundreds of lighting flashes in and near the MRA, and
have yet to see where they have struck. Possibly some of these lightning strikes were cloud-

For ecological and esthetic reasons, deliberately set fires should be prevented in the
MRA. If a fire is caused by humans, quick suppression should be considered. Crown fires are
rare in redwoods, and fires “may occur at intervals of more than 500 years”21 in the
northern part of its range. The redwoods in Happy Valley younger than about 400 years do not
have fire scars on their bark or fire cavities. The last known fire in FNMSP was in 1922 (pers.
comm. Sandy Lydon, Aptos). This 1922 fire, moving through a recently clearcut logged forest
area, came down the Aptos Creek drainage from the northeast and stopped at the steel bridge.
The Lower Area, including the MRA, was not burned at that time.
On Monte Toyon ridge, manzanita seedlings do not occur around the few remaining
mostly dying old manzanitas. This may be from shading by Shreve oaks that form thick
contiguous canopies. However, since there have been infrequent fires in the MRA area in
recorded times, possibly scrub species have not had sufficient fires for reproduction. Lack of
seedlings may not be from fire suppression, but possibly from the absence of Aboriginal
deliberate or accidental fires. If this is the case, it is possible that fire conditions in MRA may
be returning to a climax Lightning Fire Regime in which fires may have been negligible.
Note from page 45 the reported invasion of chaparral areas by Douglas-fir in Big
Basin State Park because of lack of fires in chaparral areas. Douglas-fir saplings are present
on both Hawk Point and Monte Toyon ridges abutting the scrub and prairie areas. As will be
noted in the Wildlife Section (pages 78-88), there have been changes in floristic
concentrations almost throughout the MRA. Occasional rapid changes of bird species due to
drought have been noted. However, evidence is not at hand to accurately relate what has
happened to create rapid changes in plant distribution in some areas, and stability in other
In studies on the lignotubers in the chaparral area of southern California, Susanne
James 44 reports that the sprouting scrub species evolved to not only withstand fires and
survive, but require repeated fires:

Many perennial species on both the coastal sage scrub and

chaparral in the sub-humid area of Coastal California may be
evolutionarily adapted to the ecological effects of fires.
According to a hypothesis proposed by Mutch (1970), the
characteristics of chaparral which enhance its flammability
have been evolutionarily selected.44(page 228)

Fire is assumed to have been an important selective influence

on the evolution of many chaparral species. For example,
chaparral community dominated by manzanita (Arctostaphylos) is
dependent upon fire for long term persistence at any one
locality because fire induces manzanita seed germination.
Fire also “prepares” a soil environment conducive to
manzanita seedling growth by increasing both the ash layer and
soil PH, and destroying allelopathic soil chemicals. Fire may
be a necessary environmental component for perpetuation of
chamise (Adenostoma)chaparral and Ceanothus chaparral for
similar reasons. Most chaparral species not only tolerate
burning but are dependent upon fire for recycled nutrients and
ultimately for regeneration and reproduction either by
sprouting or seed germination. 44 (page 229)

Root and Trunk Functions

The redwood does not have a taproot. Its strength is assured by the massive root
formation which can spread more than 50 feet laterally, and the larger roots extending from
two to six feet below the surface. Barbour and Majors 10 note that the roots of the nearby
redwoods often mesh yielding strong protection.
The feeder roots are the mass of small almost fibrous rootlets which impact the
mineral soil extending downward for several feet, with some close to the surface just under
the humus layer,
The trunk structure (Figures 4.4 and 4.17) is basically like other conifers. The
cambium is a single-celled layer between the inner bark (phloem) and the xylem (sapwood).
The bark (dead cells) and inner bark (living cells) together make up the cork cambium. The
living cells of the xylem together with the dead cells of the heartwood make up the vascular
cambium. The inner bark or phloem transports the carbohydrate and protein compounds
made in the leaves. This energy flows downward through the phloem to other structures,
mainly to the vascular cambium and roots where it is stored and later used to maintain the
health and growth of the plant.

The red heartwood consists of dead cells enriched with tannins and other phenolics
which protect it from insect invasion, but it is still susceptible to heartrot fungi when the
protective bark at the base is repeatedly damaged by fires. Repeated burning can initiate the
development of a fire cavity (Mark Finney45). The sapwood cells primarily store and
transport water from the roots to all of the tree. A large redwood can transpire as much as 200
gallons of water each day (Evarts and Popper24). The bark has very little oils, and large trees
can withstand low intensity fires. The bark on the largest of redwoods is reported to be a foot
thick. Some of the bark fissures of a 7 feet dbh twisted redwood (Figure 4.2) in George’s Flat
are about 13 inches deep, but bark thickness in the FNMSP is rarely more than 6 inches.

Albino Redwoods

This mutation of a redwood tree from the lignotuber, burl or roots, is rare. The leaves
lack chlorophyll, the green pigment necessary for photosynthesis to produce sugars and
proteins, giving energy to the plant for growth. The albino growth gets all its food source from
the parent plant. The leaves are ivory to creamy white, and waxy appearing. The largest
albino redwood on record is 80 feet high.24 Two clumps of sprouts are near the Mangles
Ranch Area, one in the lower area of FNMSP, and another in a nearby private redwood stand.
The sprouts in the private clump are from damaged lignotuber growths at the edge of a road.
The patch contains over 100 sprouts and extends out to nine feet from the 5.5 foot dbh parent -
the tallest sprouts are 7 feet high. The stem part of a new branchlet is completely white, but in
older wood, the stem is mottled or completely covered with reddish bark.


The crown gall is a non-pathogenic gall that does not kill the tree. It may be on the trunk or in
the crown. In the Berkeley area there is an incidence of three percent of tumorigenic
individuals infected. Scher and Wilson46 report tumorigenesis has been found in Alameda,
Humboldt, Marin, Santa Cruz, and Sonoma counties. This gall has not been found in the
Lower Area and MRA of FNMSP.


Epiphytes grow in the canopies of large heavy-limbed redwoods, mostly in the

northern part of the range. Evarts and Popper24 (page 35) report:

Sillett found 13 species of vascular plants growing as

epiphytes in the canopy: one spike-moss, three ferns, four
shrubs, and five trees. ...Sillett encountered a diminutive
California bay growing within a knothole 322 feet up the trunk
of the Redwood Creek Giant; in its lofty perch this California
bay is the highest recorded epiphytic tree in the world.

Structures Originating From Dormant Buds

Growth Regulators. When there is an injury to the tree, dormant buds become
active24, developing into the forms listed above. Dormant buds sprout when the production of
growth regulators is reduced:

Growth regulators produced by the redwood normally keep its

buds from sprouting. When the stem tip of a seedling or tree is
killed or severely damaged by fire, browsing, or other injury,
many of the buds are released from dormancy. ---Stump-sprouted
suckers are exceptionally vigorous and can greatly outpace the
growth of comparably aged redwood seedlings.24

Evarts and Popper24 continue:

Although a redwood contains dormant buds at a very early age,

its peak potential for prolific sprouting occurs when the tree
is about 200 to 400 years old. After that age, the ability to
sprout appears to decline. An old redwood uprooted by high
winds or killed by a fire will not necessarily send out new,
life-renewing shoots.

Sprouts (Clones)

Sprouts around the base of a stump can form a sprout ring, sometimes called a fairy
ring (see fairy ring discussion on next page). Most loggers and researchers use the term
sprouts instead of clones. Sprouts (Figure 4.2) are an important form of redwood

Redwoods, tanoaks, and most redwood forest shrubs re-sprout

from underground buds protected by the soil from the fire’s
heat. ... Sprout origin trees are more common in drier, warmer
sites where fires are more damaging and seedling regeneration
is less likely... Fewer than ten percent of trees in northern
stands are of sprout (Stephen Viers21).

Noss5 adds a few facts to sprouting behavior:


Because their basal burls are small, seedlings and saplings

produce few sprouts. Redwood may be propagated by cuttings with
no special treatment. Rooting in excess of 90 percent is
obtained routinely when using cuttings from young plants.

Rudolph Becking37 gives another view (copied from Viers paper):

Under intense management redwood naturally regenerates

predominantly by sprout growth as clones from stumps rather
than by genetically diverse seedlings.21

Sprout Rings (Fairy Rings)

A sprout ring is a circle of redwood sprouts from dormant basal buds around the
stump of a logged or naturally deteriorated redwood. The trees in a sprout ring can grow
successfully into mature trees. Many stumps of the trees logged in FNMSP have several of
these young trees surrounding and occasionally touching the deteriorating stump. Eventually,
some of them may fuse to each other near the base to form a tighter enclosure. Others
members of the sprout ring may die from nutrient competition or shading as the surrounding
canopy closes in. As the stump rots away, the area between the sprouts may be covered with
deep duff and humus.

Fairy Rings. Many authors and interpretive specialists prefer to call sprout rings fairy
rings. The term “fairy-ring” has been used for centuries to describe this growth behavior by
species of mushrooms. Mushroom experts Robert and Dorothy Orr relate:

The Fairy-ring Mushroom grows on lawns or pastures, especially

where it is cool and foggy during spring, summer and early
autumn. It very frequently grows in a circle called fairy
rings. These yearly widening circles were once believed to
enclose the space where fairies danced at night. A more
scientific but less poetic version is that a fairy ring results
from the mycelium utilizing so much of the organic material
within the ring that it is forced to expand outwardly. The
fruiting bodies, consequently, appear above ground in ever
widening circles, year after year. Many other kinds of fleshy
fungi besides Marasmius oreades form fairy rings.47

The fairy ring concept can be applied to the redwood in that the redwood sprout rings are
clones which may make a circular pattern. However, the “widening” concept for the ring

does not appear in research literature. I have found no account of this redwood ring
continually expanding, and I have not witnessed this behavior in the sprout rings in FNMSP.
However, Schoenherr12 -p440 describes the circular expanding growth pattern of the creosote
bush, Larrea tridentata over flat land from a solitary plant:

Aerial photographs show that in old stands of Creosote Bush,

circles of shrubs are apparent. Subsequent study shows that the
bushes involved in a circle contain the same generic material;
that is, they are clones. There may be two to nine shrubs in
these rings, outside of the crown, and the oldest stems are in
the center. Eventually the central stems die, but the shrub
continues to expand until the living stems form a ring. As the
ring enlarges, it breaks up into bundles of stems, each
representing a different plant. Actually, the different
components of the circle originated from a single root stem.
The original plant had a taproot, but the different members of
the clone do not have taproots.

Even though the creosote growth is similar to that of mushroom fairy ring, the term
has not been used here as it has with the redwood (see more on creosote bush, pages 72-73).
The creosote bush expanding clonal growth is not the same process as for the
redwood clusters in Mangels Ranch Area. MRA clusters are formed when a slump jumble
appears on a hillside (Figure 4.14 and pp 62-70). The exposed mineral soil on this land scar
presents a patch of duff and humus-free dirt needed for redwood seedling growth. The
seedlings may proliferate throughout the land scar, and after hundreds of years, the surviving
large redwood trees form the cluster (Figures 6-8). The peripheral redwoods forming the
MRA clusters are mostly large mature trees, uneven-aged, and spaced in a roundish pattern.
The ground area between the peripheral trees is of deep duff and humus that does not contain
understory of plants, although an occasional living small redwood tree may be present.

Tree Members Comprising a Redwood Sprout Ring May Not Be Sprouts From The
Same “Mother” Tree

In discussing redwood clusters with interpretive personnel and educators, the concept
of a cluster being a clonal “fairy ring” was often stated. However, not all the tree members of
a sprout ring around a stump or in the circular cluster peripheral trees are genetically the same,
that is, not all originated from a single “mother” tree. The following report by W. J. Libby
sheds light on the genetics of the sprout ring, but also discusses the redwood cluster
phenomenon from his study in Humboldt Redwoods State Park48:

Clusters of redwood in natural stands sometimes called “fairy

rings”, are usually thought to be clonal. However, the “fairy
rings”, within these four stands often proved to have other
seedlings or clones sharing the ring with the resident clone.
One might expect that unusually well-adapted clones would be
occupying large areas, but no extensive clones were located in
the four stands studied.

The following statement by Verna Johnston suggests that most of the replacement in
logged areas are from sprout rings:

Over the centuries a ring of trees may stand around long-gone

ancestors. This sprouting ability explains why there are still
Redwoods growing on logged-over forests that have failed to
regenerate new seedlings.11


Locally, the redwood sprout rings surrounding logging stumps are called “corralitos”
which means ”small corrals” in Spanish. The Spaniards were reported to pen their horses by
placing branches between the trees where there was an open space in the sprout ring allowing
a horse to enter.
A natural (not due to logging) corralita is located in Cluster #21 (Figure 2). The parent
tree material is completely gone from inside the ring, leaving eight encircling trees, some of
which are fused to each other at the base. The corralita is at least 250 years old. Another such
natural sprout ring is in George’s Flat.
The sprout ring in cluster #21 appears to have formed around the edge of the root-pull
pit from a treefall or death of a redwood on the periphery of the cluster. The ground was not
dug in the center of the sprout trees to locate evidence of burning. The corralita sprouts most
likely originated from lignotuber growth remaining in the soil at the perimeter of the rootwad
or burned stump. However, the sprouts may have also been seedlings. The redwoods in this
cluster have two types of bark formation, the normal vertical grooves, and an extreme twisted
or spiral form (Figure 4.2). The eight corralita trees do not have twisted or spiral outer bark.

Christmas Tree
When redwood limbs on a living trunk are burned by a fire, there can be a prolific
sprouting of buds at the base of the injured limbs, forming a mass of trunk growth which
resembles a tightly branched shaped Christmas tree (Figure 4.8.). A splendid photograph of
redwood Christmas trees appears in Evarts and Popper.24

Stump Peeler
If sprouts develop into small trees on the top outer rim of a cut redwood stump, local
foresters call them peelers (Figure 4.11).

If the new trees do not attain their own structural root systems in the ground, they may
eventually become detached from the outer surface of the high edge of the stump.


A reiteration is a tree-like growth that originates from an injury that stimulates dorsal
buds to become active on the main trunk or on a large broken limb (Figure 4.2; and Noss 5 (p
96)). Several reiterations appear on redwoods in MRA. The Mangels-Van Eck Redwood has
two large reiterated growths from a large broken branch about 50 feet up the bole. This
abnormal growth is probably why the 11.2 foot dbh diameter Mangels-Van Eck Redwood was
not harvested. In the literature, standing trees producing reiterations have not been referred to
as nurse trees although I suggest that fallen living trees with dorsal reiterations called
piggyback trees (see next paragraph), could be called a form of nurse tree.

Piggyback Tree

A Redwood Piggyback Nurse Tree (Figures 4.3 and 6) is a living tree having viable
roots in the ground with reiterations growing on the dorsal surface in the form of trees. In this
nomenclature, Redwood is the species, and the Piggyback is the living Nurse Tree. The tree-
like reiterations are formed by emerging previously dormant buds on the dorsal surface of the
downed trunk. The remaining root system of the downed tree supplies the nutrients and stores
energy for the piggyback reiterations. Evarts and Popper24 include a detailed section on
dormant bud formation and function. Here is a brief account of this process:

A fallen tree, for example, may send up a row of shoots that emerge from buds along
the length of the bole.24

When visiting the Olympic National Park about 40 years ago, downed decaying
Douglas-firs with small trees growing on top surface were referred to by Park personnel as
“piggyback trees” .
The piggyback tree in Cluster #7, (Figure 6) is a treefall with part of its viable root
system in the ground. The treefall occurred about 60-70 years ago. It is still alive with six
upright reiterations growing from the trunk. The largest reiteration is 21 inches in diameter at
its junction with the trunk. The diameter of the downed trunk is 19 inches under the largest 21
inches dbh reiteration (Figure 6). This cluster and the piggyback

tree are protected from strong winds from any direction, but as these reiterations grow taller,
they will catch more wind stress and may topple. A strong earthquake may also topple them as
they grow larger.

Negative Geotropism

The dormant bud growths on a piggyback nurse tree are the result of what plant
physiologists call negative geotropism. The derivation of the words in this structure tells us
that: the reiterations are growing (tropism) upward against (negative) the pull of the earth’s
gravity (geo). Roots have a positive geotropism and grow downward, whereas standing trees
are the result of negative geotropism.
The six tree-like growths on the piggyback tree have temporarily filled the canopy gap
and are now self-pruning in the shade from the taller redwood trees of the cluster and from
nearby California bay and Shreve oak trees. All the horizontal limbs on the treefall have died
except one (Figure 4.3).
A redwood tree about 30 feet high is growing off the rootwad of the treefall in the
center of the cluster. It is unhealthy and appears to be dying. No redwood seedlings or sprouts
are on the ground near the piggyback tree, and roots are not growing out of the trunk into the
soil where the trunk is touching the ground under the reiterations.

Trunk Sprouts, Lignotubers, and Burls

Different interpretations of sprouting behavior are common, and considerable space is

given here. For example, most texts state that the redwood is the only conifer that sprouts after
a fire. However, the bigcone Douglas-fir, Pseudsotsuga macrocarpa of southern California
also sprouts on the trunk.11,19,49 Verna Johnston11 reveals that:

... Bigcone Douglas-fir is the only southern California conifer

capable of sprouting from large branches and from the trunk
after defoliation by flames.

Gause, 196649 discovered that the sprouting is from the trunk only. The big-cone
Douglas-fir tree does not produce sprouts from the ground around the stump because it does
not have lignotubers in the ground or burls at the base of the trunk.

The dormant buds are laid down during the formation of the seedling in the aerial parts
of the trunk. The redwood is the only conifer which sprouts from a stump or lignotuber. Many
plants in other families in the chaparral community and the Ginko and Eucalyptus sprout from
stump and ground structures after a fire.
Peter Del Tredici of the Harvard University Arnold Arboretum is one of the prominent
authors on lignotubers for the redwood. He reveals the complexity of these structures: 50

One must keep in mind, however, that the lignotuber formed at

the cotyledonary node is under strict genetic control while
those that develop elsewhere on the trunk are under
environmental control. In this regard Sequoia is similar to
Ginkgo biloba which produces positively geotropic lignotubers
from axillary cotyledonary buds (basal chichi), as well as
induced lignotubers (aerial chichi) on its trunk and branches.

Susanne James of UC Riverside who has researched lignotubers and burls on chaparral
species, discussed these structures and differentiates between lignotubers and burls. The
differences and similarities are found in cell origin and structure:

The similarities between lignotubers and burls of ontogenetic

development, and functional and ecological significance are
sufficient to categorize all these structures as lignotubers.
The term ‘burl’ can be used to describe swellings induced by
tissue injury.44 (page 251)

The term ‘burl’ is now generally used to describe any wood

which has an unusual and irregular ‘grain’ with swirled
patterns (typical of wood with many bud traces).44 (page 259)

Peter Del Tredici also discusses the burl:50 -p 258

Large, lignotuber-like structures often can project out from

the trunk 50 cm or more. If these burls come in contact
with the ground, which they often do, they will develop both
roots and shoots.

None of the 46 papers presented at the 1996 Proceedings (page 102) of the Humboldt
Redwood Conference and none the natural history books cited in the Guide except for Reed
Noss’5 book mentioned the lignotuber. However, all of the other natural history books I
reviewed11,12, 19, 24, gave considerable attention to burls and the other dormant bud structures
mentioned above. Since the burl is associated very closely in function and structure to the
lignotuber, it seems to be sufficient to some educators to refer to these structures as “burls.”
The lignotuber is of primary importance to ecologists, and the following paragraphs include a
few paraphrased and quoted comments from Peter Del Tredici50 and Susanne James.44
In 1899, lignotubers were mentioned in Eucalyptus research, and the first
comprehensive treatment of lignotubers was printed in 1925. The term burl was
used in the description of the subterranean woody structure by Jepson (1916)51 who referred
to its appearance and development in manzanitas. Del Tredici summarizes the following three
basic functions of the lignotuber: (1) for production and storage of sprout buds, (2), to store
carbohydrate and mineral nutrients, and (3), as anchor organs on steep slopes.
In her discussion of lignotubers and sprouts on woody plants, Susanne James44 says:

Sprouting can begin from stem, root, lignotuber, or burl tissue

within ten days of injury or total destruction to the aerial
canopy. Sprouting potential may be enhanced by the formation of
ontogenetically produced lignotubers which serve as a source of
dormant buds and may serve in carbohydrates nutrient, and water
storage. Repeated sprouting may result in a tissue called a

“Willis Jepson’s Circle” in Mill Valley - a Possible Misinterpretation of Circle Cluster

(“Fairy Ring”) Formation

Because of its harvesting value and superlative life history attributes for public
viewing, the redwood has been researched extensively. However there is some con-fusion on
the importance and interaction of burls, lignotubers, sprout rings (“fairy rings”), and seedling
The following pages 58 to 60 include a discussion of suggested functions of the
lignotuber in the formation of redwood sprout rings (“fairy rings”), and possibly in the
formation of “circles” or “clusters”. This discussion is expanded in Appendix I (pages 89-94).
Sprout rings are very common in all cut redwood forests but they also occur in uncut
areas. This single layer of sprouts that makes large trees around trunks are commonly called
“fairy rings.” Since this term is merely a poetic good sounding analogy

to the rings formed by certain fungi, it is acceptable to describe the new sprout ring around a
stump. However, it has not been scientifically described that, like the mushroom ring, the
sprout rings of redwoods continue to expand forming large open clusters in a redwood stand,
or in the case of the Mangels Ranch Area, large isolated clusters amid scrub and oak
woodland plant communities.
An important redwood behavior needing clarification for interpreters and docents is to
question the accepted belief that an expanding “fairy ring” formation around a “mother tree”
can form large “circles” or clusters.
The following is what I have encountered in the literature and in discussion with
researchers and editors involved in this subject. Three researchers who have given “circles”
and “fairy ring” attention are Willis Jepson (1910), Peter Del Tredici, (1998 and 1999), and
Reed Noss, (2000). It may appear that I am being highly critical of some of the wording of
professional researchers and editors, but it has been important to all redwood researchers and
educators for them to have explored the many possible functions of burls lignotubers, and
sprouts. And, to determine if the term ”fairy ring” can be used as a valid analogy for a ring of
sprouts around a mother tree that continues to grow outward forming a large cluster.
So far the validity of an expanding “fairy ring” has yet to be established. This Jepson
circle of trees is the only description on the literature of what is now called by some as a
“fairy ring” cluster. I made an extensive study of a distinct nearly true circle of redwoods that
Mill Valley historians, City Park officials, and myself consider to be the “circle” Jepson
studied (Appendix I, Figure 10, Jepson’s field notes copied by Dr. Richard Beidleman, and
Misuraca, Rick.199257, in Lit. Cit. p102).
Here are, in time sequence, the comments by three authors and a popular writer who
have given us some valuable information to further explore these concepts: 1. In
1898 Willis Jepson was surveying redwoods stands along the coast. In 1910, he published his
account of the redwood in THE SILVA OF CALIFORNIA.52 This is what Jepson wrote (note the
1-3 underlined areas commented upon below):

The tree has no taproot but a large number of huge lateral

roots which lie near the surface of the ground at their point
of origin, a most advantageous position (1) to generate by
adventitious buds a circle of sprouts about the stump. The
sprouts are usually numerous, sometimes a hundred or more. (2)
These form a second generation which reduced in number by
competition, are eventually represented by a circle of trees.
In some instances these trees have been cut and a third
generation is now near to merchantable timber.

Such “circles” may be seen in Mill Valley at the southeastern

base of Mt. Tamalpais. One of these “circles” is fifty-one feet
in one direction, forty-five feet in the other direction, and
contains forty-five large trees, not counting the small ones.
The girth of the trunks ranges from less than two feet to six
feet while the crowns rise fifty to seventy feet. (3) In the
centre once stood the parent; the stumps represent the second
generation, while the living trees are of the third generation
at least. ... In most cases the original stump has wholly
disappeared as result of repeated fires.52 (emphasis mine)

Comments (1): “To generate by adventitious buds” is the well known development of
sprouts originating from roots or lignotubers around a cut stump. This commonly referred to
as a “fairy ring.” Jepson was interested in lignotubers with his work on manzanita51 published
1916. At this point there is still no reference to an expansion of these sprouts to form a larger
circle away from a stump, or as he considered in the Mill Valley circle, a “parent” tree.
(2) and (3): The “second generation” term here confuses a reader who knows about
“second-growth” in lumbering lingo and academic analysis (and throughout the literature). A
first generation redwood is a large tree that has been there for hundreds of years, and the
following generations, second, third, etc, follow each successive cutting. The old stumps in
the “Jepson circle” under study here are the same size and deterioration as all the other first
generation stumps in the quarter-mile previously uncut redwoods along a creek in Mill Valley.
Jepson mistakenly considered the trees from these stumps were second-growth, with the first
generation being a parent tree that was assumed to have been in the center of the circle.
However, this is not a serious problem. What is important and revealing is that he stated that
the sprouts became “reduced in number by competition”. Regardless if the next
generation were sprouts or seedlings, it was known then that following a catastrophic event
such as a fire, flood, or landslide that the new reproduction in the exposed mineral soil would
undergo a constant competition between the redwoods for nutrients and light. The slump
jumble clusters in the MRA are of this type. In Jepson’s case, he preferred to call them sprouts
instead of seedlings.
Except for this one event, evidence of a spreading sprout circle has not been described,
but evidence of competitive seedlings forming circles and stand clusters has been reported.
The slump jumble clusters of MRA have added more information on cluster formation.

Genetic testing is needed to determine if a circle was of seedlings or sprouts since the
original crop of young reproduction was not witnessed.
2. In my readings, the earliest mention of “fairy circles” is in Jack London’s THE

More leaping tree squirrels, more ruddy madronos and majestic

oaks, more fairy circles of redwoods, ...

Is this the original source of the “fairy ring” concept now in common use?
3. In 1998, Peter Del Tredici published an article in Madrono51 about redwood
lignotubers mentioning the Jepson 1910 article: Jepson (1910) described one colony of
45 large redwoods that formed a third generation “fairy ring”, 17 m by 15 m
across. Jepson did not use the term “fairy ring” in his article. The largest of these second
generation trees now, after over 160 years of growth, are up to 37 inches dbh which is the
expected size of second generation trees of this age. In 1999, Del Tredici presented the same
information from Jepson in Arnoldia:

The potential dimensions of the redwood lignotuber were first

suggested by W.L. Jepson, who described a clump of 45 large
redwoods that formed a third generation “fairy ring” fifty feet
by fifty six feet across. The photos on page 19 show a giant
lignotuber that has been exposed by erosion near the city of
Eureka, California.

Peter Del Tredici is now suggesting that Jepson’s “fairy ring” had “The potential
dimensions of the redwood lignotuber...”. Jepson had not used the term lignotuber.
Does Del Tredici’s mentioning the 525 ton lignotuber in the discussion of the Jepson circle
indicate that he thinks the Jepson circle could have been formed by such an abnormality? The
juxtaposition of these two reports - a large “sprout ring” circle, and the huge lignotuber - has
given future researchers more important facts for additional research to determine empirically
how important these factors are in the survival of the redwood in a world of rapidly changing
physical parameters.
4. The last literary source of “fairy ring” information is from Reed Noss in THE
5 p.114
REDWOOD FOREST. Chapter 4. Redwood Trees, Communities, and Ecosystems was
written by 11 authors including Peter Del Tredici who contributed the lignotuber and “fairy
ring” discussion:

One report describes a colony of forty-five redwood trunks that

formed a third-generation fairy ring 17 m by 15 m across,
whereas another illustrates a lignotuber exposed by erosion
that was 12.5 m across and weighed 475,000 kg.

How Do the Mill Valley Clusters Compare with FNMSP Sprout Rings?

Many hundreds of sprout rings are in the FNMSP, and after around 100 years none of
these trees are forming another row of third-generation trees outside of them, unless they have
been logged as second-growth. Tiny sprouts have grown immediately next to the stumps of
the cut second-growth trees. After 100 years, the first generation stump sprout rings (second-
growth) are about 10-15 feet outside diameter.

Types of Redwood Clusters

The distribution of individual trees in a given area varies considerably because the
redwood lives in a matrix of extreme differences in topography, soil chemistry and fertility,
climate changes, plant competition, and human degradation. The stability of each
concentration of trees depends upon landslides, fragility of the soil causing uprooting,
exposure to strong winds, exposed to salt aerosols of ocean winds, and undercutting on stream
banks. Within stands of redwoods, areas that do not contain redwoods are common. These
may range up to several hundred feet across.
Distribution of individual redwoods is the basis of silvicultural practices. Clear cutting
of old-growth forests as in the old days is not allowed on government property, but some
clearcutting may be included in private plantation harvesting methods for other tree species.
Other methods include combinations of leaving seed trees, getting the greatest growth out of
trees by selective cutting, thinning of saplings, removal of other competing tree species, and
planting thousands of two-year nursery raised trees after a cut (Noss5 pp 236-245).
Research on isolated redwood stands and clusters has been minimal. This void in
understanding the formation of an isolated cluster or circle has apparently resulted in
accepting the poetic concepts of “fairy rings” as expanding “mother tree” circles by State Park
interpreters, natural history writers, and CDF officials.

Natural sprout rings are uncommon. Sprout rings around a stump of a tree that has
been logged are obvious and prevalent throughout harvested redwood areas. However, in the
uncut redwood clusters in Happy Valley, only one sprout ring exists, the corralita in Cluster
#21 - and there is another natural sprout ring in George’s Flat. The sprout ring in Cluster #21
was apparently formed when a large peripheral redwood of the slump jumble cluster uprooted
creating a root-pull pit in which the residual lignotubers produced the ring of trees.
One can imagine many reasons why a 20 feet or more diameter vacuity of trees can
appear amid a thick forest. On level ground some causes could be soil quality and too much or
too little water. A flat cleared area frequented for hundreds of years annually by Aborigines
collecting tanoak acorns during the summer may still exist.

Stand Cluster

I have suggested for my cluster study to differentiate two kinds of redwood clusters,
“stand clusters”, and “slump jumble clusters.” This terminology is not in the redwood
A stand cluster is a group of trees isolated from the contiguous canopy of a redwood
forest. It has a similar surrounding tree spacing and understory composition as between the
trees of the forest, but altering in plant abundance and species as canopy shading varies. The
mature redwoods in the stand clusters are somewhat widely spaced as in a forest, with
occasional close contact to others in the cluster. In a stand cluster, there is no wide ground
area between the peripheral trees without trees, and most often understory plants are present
(see D and E in Figure 2).

Slump Jumbles Are a Form of Gravitational Creep Erosion

Creep erosion is the slow movement of soil down the slope. A clumped mass
movement of soil and possibly rocks is called a slump jumble (also called earthflow jumble),
described by Norman Hinds, Professor of Geology, U.C. Berkeley:

Where the fine textured rock mantle is waterlogged, gradual or

sudden sliding of masses of various sizes is common. More or
less prominent gashes are left in the hillsides and slump
jumbles form lower down the slopes or at the base. Some of
these slumps are very large. In populated regions, houses and
other buildings built on such unstable rock mantle have been
destroyed, property has been invaded by the advancing masses,
sections of streets and roads have been carried away, or have
been blocked each year or several times a year by the slides.
Creep is retarded where there is an abundant plant cover whose
roots bind the loose particles together for several feet below
the surface. However, if the mantle is thick or if rocks are
poorly consolidated, masses slide when they are waterlogged in
spite of the root mat.53

Where bare mineral soil has been exposed in a land scar left by a slump jumble
(Figure 4.14), redwood seedlings may become established. The surviving seedlings then
outgrow competitive species for space and light, and decrease in numbers over many years
due to shading by the faster growing redwoods.

Figure 6. Distribution and size of redwood trees in slump jumble cluster #7.
See page 64 for sizes and comments for each tree.

Description of Trees - Cluster No. 7, Piggyback Cluster, March 2004

No. Avg. dbh Comments

in inches
1 41 Near center of cluster, on edge of jumble. Marked
2 46 On lower edge with leaves touching ground. Marked.
3 45 Next to nurse tree.
4 9 Sprout on root wad, probably from lignotuber
5 14 Source of tree # 6.
6 12 Connected on ground surface to #5, but continued outward,
had breakage, and the tree parallels the ground.
7 43 Main peripheral tree to the north.
8 31 Near root-pull pit of piggyback tree.
9 19
10 63 Largest tree in cluster, dominates the canopy. Marked.
11 45 Below upper edge of jumble scar. This area is shadowed by
large trees in another cluster about 150 ft. uphill and to the southwest. Marked.
12 29 On eastern edge of cluster, limbs on ground. Marked
13 33 On the southern periphery of jumble.
14 29 The treefall took place about 80 -100 years ago. No. 4 tree
sprouted off the rootwad, and trees numbers 15-20 were reiterations which grew
off the dorsal surface. Note the abrupt reduction in diameter of the treefall (#14)
after each reiteration growth. Root system of #14 remains viable for all trees.
15 9 #15 =10” in diameter on trunk of #14. Diameter of #14 at
upper edge of #15 = 28”.
16 21 #16 = 19” diameter at attachment on #14 trunk. #14 diameter at lower edge of
#16 = 18 “
17 5 Small, 3 “ in diameter (newly dead)
18 13 # 18 = 13” at base. #14 diameter at upper edge of #18 = 17”
- at lower edge of #18 = 13”.
19 9 # 19 = 9” Nurse tree #14 becoming deteriorated and rotting at end.#14 diameter
at upper edge of #19 = 12” :#14 at lower edge of #19 = 8.”
20 3 # 20 = 3” at base. #14 becoming more deteriorated. and dead near end. #20
weak, diameter of #14 = 5.”

There is no sign of fire in the cluster.

Marked=was marked for cutting on THP


Figure 7 Distribution and size of redwood trees in slump jumble cluster #10.
See other side for sizes and comments for each tree.

Description of Trees - Cluster No. 10, The Tent Cluster, March 2004

No. Avg. dbh Comments

in inches
1 16 Small tree on trail entering cluster.
2 40
3 43 Center of treefall action and woodrat nest. Marked.
4 26 Inside perimeter of cluster. Marked.
5 22 Abuts #8, fused at bottom with #5. Marked.
6 7 Small injured tree resulting in #30 and #30a.
7 10 Small tree in center, not healthy.
8 25 Fused with #5 at base with #8. Marked.
9 35 On east downhill border of jumble.
10 5 Small tree near deteriorating objects in center.
11 19
12 54 Largest tree in cluster, shading much ground.
13 52 Marked.
14 7 Near base of #13.
15 20 Fused with larger #16 near upper edge of land scar.
16 46
17 3 Young tree in root-pull pit of downed tree (#24).
18 2 Healthy tree growing in treefall gap.
19 11 Young tree in root-pull of nursery log (#20).
20 About 6 ft. Old tree with bark mostly gone at base. Nursery log with some grass and
small herbs on upper surface.
21 8 Small healthy trees in treefall gap.
22 7 Tree inside periphery.
23 5 Broken, with #26 as reiteration.
24 30 Downed treefall inside cluster.
25 8 Small tree behind #16 on edge of slump area.
26 2 Reiteration off #23 broken area.
27, 28, 1 - 1.8 Three small trees growing in brush outside influence of litter and shading
29 of cluster.
30 2 Reiterations on #6 with branches and branchlets growing horizontally
toward light.

There is some evidence of burned material on cluster floor along with deteriorating very old
remnants of either burls or lignotubers scattered in center. Only #22 has a small area of burn
on the trunk near the ground.

Marked = Was marked for cutting on THP.


Figure 8. Distribution of redwood trees in slump jumble cluster #24.


Description of Trees - Cluster No. 24, The Grand Cluster, March 2004

No. Avg. dbh Comments

in inches
1 2
2 60 Largest tree in cluster. Marked.
3 2 Small unhealthy sapling sprout.
4 41
5 8
6 46 Marked.
7 30 Slump jumble drops off suddenly as if jumble ended here. Marked.
8 5 Next to #7, probably sprout.
9 43 In area where cluster bottom is with least slope between here and #4.
Probably jumble deposit here. Marked.
10 1 Numbers 10 - 12 form a line of small growth. #11 adjacent to #9.
11 1+
12 1+
13 38 One of nine trees, #13 - #21, forming the southern end of the cluster.
14 29 Marked.
15 35
16 17
17 2
18 2-
19 2-
20 42 Marked.
21 3
22 5 Dead, leaning - next to #23.
23 22 This tree fell during the first week of March, 2004. It was near death - the
rootwad was almost non-existent with roots weak and rotten.
24 8 Dead, standing, rotted with no limbs.
25 12 Next to Douglas-firs (DF). Not healthy.
26 30 Dead. Douglas-fir attached at base to larger living #27 DF. #26 is leaning
strongly with top resting on redwood canopy. Marked.
27 46 Only living DF in clusters. Marked.

Marked = Was marked for cutting on THP.


Landslides contain more of the bedrock structure than slump jumbles, are large, and
usually move rapidly - referred to by Hinds at times to be a rock avalanche. There have been
several of these in the MRA area, one of which has closed one of the trails. An earth or land
scar left by landslides could also support seedling growth of redwoods. This has happened in
the neighboring redwood forest in Monte Toyon Conference Grounds where four saplings are
growing on a landslide.

Slump Jumble Clusters

When I began studying clusters in 1996, I referred to them as circular clusters

because they each formed a roughly circular pattern. I found no description in the literature of
the process of their formation other than, as stated above, they were so-called “fairy rings” or
expanding sprout rings around the stump of a “mother” tree. Vegetation of any species and
redwood saplings in the understory area are rare under the canopy in these clusters (Figures 6-
8). Redwood seedlings in the shadow of the peripheral trees usually perish due to lack of
water in the duff, from pathogenic fungi living in the deep and long-time accumulation of duff
and humus, by intense shading, or being eaten by many forest vegetarians.
After I had written the first draft of this Guide, I conducted a more comprehensive
research of geomorphological and local climate parameters. I mapped three slump jumble
clusters recording the size and distribution of the trees, the ground area in the cluster where
understory plants do not grow, and the areas inside the cluster that had a minimal understory.
The thick scrub growth and Shreve oak abutting the peripheral trees were also noted. The
edges of the slump jumble land scars were entered on the maps along with the slope
percentage of the sides of the slump jumble scar.

Slump Jumble Cluster Formation

When first seeing the clusters in MRA 43 years ago, I was reminded from a course
called Forest Influences (J. Kittredge15) that trees can enhance their own habitat and affect
surrounding plant communities.
These adaptations became important at the public hearing at the Felton CDF office on
the Hetzer Timber Harvest Plan. Dave Hope, planning assistant for the County of Santa Cruz,
stated that these clusters were rare and he had not seen them when living in Mendocino
County. As mentioned before at the same THP hearing, the presiding CDF Forester
commented that these clusters were expansions from “a mother tree”. From my Forest
Influences course, I assumed that micro-climate enhancement was at least part of the process
of why these clusters could persist on a xeric hillside covered with scrub and other evergreen
trees, mostly Shreve oak.

Survival parameters measured in the Forest Influences course were the increase of
relative humidity inside the stand, a decrease in temperature compared to the area immediately
abutting the cluster, the litter and duff was considerably deeper than in the surrounding coyote
brush/blueblossom shrub, and a marked increase in water absorption and retention into the
soil inside the stand area.
Since the over 600 redwood trees in Happy Valley are mostly in clusters, and only 30
are isolated (mostly in the lower creek-influenced riparian area), there appeared to be a
survival benefit of cluster grouping. There is little or no competition for nutrients inside the
cluster from other plants, and the ground water and the minimal volume of fog drip in the
cluster could be used almost entirely by the redwoods.
When reviewing the redwood literature, care was taken to note if there was any
information which would pertain to clusters. Growth patterns similar to the slump jumble
cluster were not presented, but several papers substantiated the possible enhancement of
redwood habitat by clustering that could form a beneficial micro-environment. Ecologist
Leslie Reid14 discussed growth and survival of redwood:

... the forest modifies its own environment as it grows .., At

the smallest scale, the forest creates it own micro-
environment. ... Only as the stands matured did they produce
the conditions with which we are familiar.

Not all clusters in MRA are formed on slump jumbles. All thirty of the clusters have
not been revisited to record evidence of slump jumbles, and whether they had fire damage. I
remember there was evidence of some land movement in nearly all the clusters, but I did not
record or measure the observations. Coverage of all the clusters may be completed in a
continuing study.

Initial Findings of Cluster Study in Happy Valley

Ten of the 30 clusters have been revisited to record their structure origin, and six
were formed inside the perimeters of slump jumbles. One cluster not from a slump jumble
consisted of two over 5 foot dbh trees which had been burned or damaged, each with sprout
growths of several 3 foot diameter dbh trees. This cluster was near the crest of Hawk Point
ridge. Another cluster was a group of nine trees in the bottom of the seasonal creek which
could be called a stand cluster. It may have been a slump jumble cluster, but the road cut
above the cluster removed evidence of the edges of any land slump.
The redwoods in the clusters are slow growing, almost “pygmy” status for some.

But, it is not known how much of each of the following conditions are restricting or enhancing
growth by cluster formation. These include the basic nutrients including soil water, air
moisture and temperature affecting evapotranspiration, competition for light involving
shading, and competition with other species for seedling occupation of exposed mineral soil.
These factors come into play after a major change in the habitat takes place that
exposes the mineral soil for reproduction for the redwood and associated plant species. Fires
may have been another factor on the Happy Valley slopes.

Confirmation of Slump Jumble Process by Geologist

In March, 2004, geology graduate student Alan Kunze of Fresno State University
observed the Happy Valley Area and confirmed that the clusters in Figures 6-8 were restricted
to within the perimeters of slump jumble land scars.
The redwood clusters in Happy Valley did not show any outward expansion over the
at least 500 year span of most of these clusters. Note in Figures 6-8 that new growth was not
outside of the peripheral trees into the dense scrub cover except for three small redwoods
(Figure 7). These would most likely have to be from lignotubers because there has not been a
recent low intensity fire in the area in their age. This was the only cluster of the three mapped
which had fire scars on a few of the largest trees on the periphery. However, it is possible
these three small trees may be seedlings from some minor disturbance in the brush cover.
In Figure 7, a treefall gap occurred, allowing light to penetrate the inner circle. New
growth appears in root-pull pits (trees #17 and 19), and farther toward the center there are
healthy saplings and small trees (trees #22-24). Except for the small trees mentioned above
which are outside the jumble land scar edges (trees #27-29), there is no new growth extending
outward from the edges of the slump jumble land scars in any of the clusters studied.
As mentioned above, the growth of redwoods in Figures 6-8 remains almost entirely
within edge of the slump jumble land scar. Note the sharp steep slopes below the clearly
delineated upper slippage zone. Large peripheral trees formed at the lower edge of the jumble
debris that piled up at this juncture. The slope below the lower- most trees is usually a steeper
continuation of the original slope.
There is a plethora of very small sprouts at the base of many of the peripheral trees in
all these clusters, but there is little evidence of seedlings. However, several researchers noted
that it is difficult to distinguish between seedling production and sprouts. I did not pursue this
because it would most likely involve digging around each young growth, or by genetic

Self-Pruning of Cluster Redwoods

Self-pruning is mostly on the inside surface of the trunk (toward the center) on most of
the peripheral trees. Self-pruning is also on the outside surfaces where there is shading from
nearby redwoods or Douglas-firs. These outer branches are strongly drooping, many of them
touching the ground. At a distance, the cluster resembles the shape of an umbrella or tent
(Figure 7) because of the long pendulous branches. Second-growth redwood forests do not
attain the typical redwood “old-growth forest” imagery until well after 200 years from
cutting.27 The vegetation outside and abutting the cluster periphery are shrubs and herbs of
the Northern Coastal Scrub plant community, and sub-dominant broadleaf evergreen trees are
mostly the Shreve oak with an occasional California bay, Pacific madrone, or Douglas-fir.
Of the 53 standing dead trees and deteriorating redwood logs around and in the 29
unlogged clusters, 43 were under 40 inches (9 to 37 inches dbh), while the larger 10 were up
to 7.3 feet dbh without bark in diameter. Most of the dead trees and logs under 20 inches in
diameter were trees which had died inside the cluster circle. The peripheral living trees are
uneven-aged as in an old-growth forest.

Creosote Bush Expanding Circles in the Mojave Desert

The creosote bush circles were discovered in 1972 by aerial photographs. On the
ground these widely spaced plants which make up the circle do not readily appear to be in a
circle. This is shown in the picture in Schoenherr12 p.441 which depicts several widely spaced
and variable sized bushes. This circular expanding growth of the creosote bush was not called
a “fairy ring.”
I was interested in learning about these creosote circles because in 1950, before
joining the Marine Research Branch of the CDFG, I was installing Gallinaceous Guzzlers in
the Mojave Desert. Water would drain into a buried 500 gallon tank from a water-proof tar
apron uphill to fill in the winter and supply water to birds (primarily Gambel’s quail)
throughout the dry period.
After a guzzler was installed, we would uproot creosote bushes to form a pile of brush
on a 7-10 foot area over the underground tank for protection of quail and other birds from
raptors. I did not notice the circular pattern of these bushes and did not know about it. At least
we did not eliminate a creosote circle because the bushes we chose to uproot (with a cable and
winch on a truck) were well apart from each other to not disturb the general concentration of
vegetation, especially near the guzzler. The creosote bush has very tough roots, and with the
stems, made good protective cover.

The 18,000 year old creosote bush circle mentioned above (page 16) was in a circular
clone near Yuma Arizona. The largest creosote clone circle reported is 70 feet in diameter, but
they are usually much smaller, consisting usually of from two to nine clones. The new sprout
growth occurs on the outside of the creosote bushes because sprouts do not grow from the
inside roots.

Present Development In Happy Valley of a Potential

Redwood Cluster Occupying an Area Cleared in 1970

In 1970, Emmett Reed, who lived on the property and representing the owner Agnes
Van Eck, had an area about 50 x 70 feet cleared of brush on a gradual sloping moist area
downhill from Cluster # 21 (Figures 2 and 9). This was the only grading in Happy Valley
besides the old dirt access roads. There were two springs, a seasonal one bordering the
clearing, and a perennial spring immediately below on the road edge. They both dried up after
the 1989 earthquake. The ground is not boggy and appears to have ample water for redwoods
and other mesic vegetation such as big-leaf maples, creek dogwood, and Polypodium and
Woodwardia ferns.
In this forming cluster, there are 68 living redwood stems, 18 dead standing redwood
stems, three stems of coffeeberry (two living and one dead), one big-leaf maple, and two
Shreve oaks (Figure 9). The area covered by trees is 30 by 50 feet. Had I realized the
significance of this growth of new trees from seedlings 30 years ago, vital information could
have been gathered in cluster formation. Anyhow, the development process can now be
It is a now a stand cluster with the trees spaced almost randomly except for high
mortality and slower growth on the northern more shaded side. The growth is mostly
redwoods ranging from a one-quarter inch to 19.7 inches dbh. Self-pruning of limbs on the
inside trees occurs up to about 10-14 feet, and understory plants are absent because of
redwood canopy shading. The litter-duff-humus layer ranges from one to two inches in depth.
Two coffeeberry “trees” are present in the most concentrated redwood areas. This
single trunk growth of a coffeeberry tree has not been noted anywhere on this hillside.
Coffeeberries usually form widespread several-limbed bushes with a maximum height of 16
feet.18 The coffeeberry trees in this new cluster are 21 and 26 feet in height, and about three
inches dbh. There are no side branches off the trunks until near the canopy top of the
redwoods. Eventually the redwoods will win the height competition, being the fastest growing
and with dense evergreen branchlets.
A big-leaf maple about four inches dbh and around 30 feet height is in the forming
cluster. The maple also has a thin single trunk without branches until near the top of the
redwood canopy. At the cluster periphery on the north side are 2 one-inch diameter Shreve
oaks reaching heights of 5.0 and 8.5 feet.

Figure 9a. New cluster forming on graded land downwind of a large slump jumble redwood cluster.
Grading was done about 30 years ago.
See other side for sizes and comments for each tree.

Figure 9b. New cluster forming on graded land downwind of a large slump jumble redwood cluster.
Grading was done about 30 years ago.
See other side for sizes and comments for each tree.
Description of Trees in New Forming Cluster in Figure 9.

No. dbh Diameter 4” Comments

from ground
1 7.0 -
2 0.25 Trailing along ground toward light to side - 40°
3 3.7 - Healthy new tree near edge.
4 2.0 - On edge of cluster - healthy
5 0.40 Trailing along ground for 48° toward edge
6 0.30 Erect - 26”
7 0.50 Dead and attached at bottom to other sprout
8 2.7 - 20” high
9 6.7 - In a small mass of young growth
10 0.40 4.5 ft. high
11 4.5 - Near center
12 0.75 9 ft. high
13 0.25 Actually two small dying stems - highest 13”
14 2.0 - Coffeeberry in thick redwoods - 26 ft. tall
15 1.5 Sapling near coffeeberry
16 6.8 - Largest tree in this section
17 1.8 At edge of cluster toward nursery log
18 1.6 Sapling
19 1.0 Near base of #18 - 8 ft. - dying.
20 2.0 - Coffeeberry - 21 ht. High.
21 1.0 and 1/2 Attached. One 5.5 ft. high - other 3.0 ft.
22 0.50 Dead
23 0.25 9,5 ft. high - part of a mass of young plants
24 2.2 -
25 0.50 Dead - no leaves on twigs
26 0.40 Dead 4.0 ft. high
27 0.75
28 1.75
29 1.90
30 1.30
31 0.25 7.5 ft. growing thin and high in center of cluster
32 0.25 Dead - 20” high
33 0.50
34 1.0 Dead - 6 ft. high
35 0.25 Dying - rotting at base - 54” high
36 11.1 - Largest tree in this mass of young growth
37 9.2 -
38 8.6 - At edge of cluster toward the nursery log
39 8.0 -

No. dbh Diameter 4” Comments

from ground
40 0.25 Dead - 52” high
41 0.75 Dead - 8 ft. high
42 7.3 - One of three larger trees near edge
43 11.5 -
44 0.75 8 ft. high - sick tree
45 1.6 Not healthy
46 10.0 -
47 0.30 Long and spindly - 7.0 ft. high
48 0.75 Dead
49 2.0 -
50 0.50 Dead - 60” high
51 0.20 Dead - 34” high
52 1.6 -
53 7.7 -
54 1.75 -
55 9.4 -
56 10.3 - Fused at bottom with #57
57 19.7 - Largest tree in new cluster, and on the edge
58 14.0 - At end of cluster by itself, second largest tree
59 0.50 Small sapling near #53
60 10.8 - By itself at end of cluster near spindly Shreve oak
61 1.75 - Shreve oak striving to keep up height
62 12.4 - Fused at bottom with #63
63 10.9 - Fused with #62
64 7.4 -
65 1.75 Coffeeberry - dead and deteriorated
66 2.0 -
67 1.0 Dead - 24” high
68 1.20 Dead 18” high
69 3.5 - Maple - about 30 ft. high
70 2.0 -
71 1.0 Dead - rotten at base - totally dried
72 0.75 Dead - 10 ft. high (very dead with no leaves present)
73 0.83 Dead - broken and decaying
74 0.25 Dead
75 0.50 Shreve oak spindly and trying to grow laterally
76 6.3 -
77 1.8 - On edge of cluster facing northeast
78 9.9 -
79 1.3 -
80 1.5 - Dead - badly deteriorated
81 3.0 -
82 1.1 -
83 4.4 -
84 3.2 -
85 5.1 -
86 1.5 - On edge of north side of cluster (outside of coffeeberry bush)

The seedling and sapling redwoods were able to outgrow the invading abutting
understory herb and scrub species. After about 30 years, herbs and grasses are not growing
inside the periphery of the cluster. The process from now on is how fast the redwood trees
will grow in competition with each other. For the first 8-10 years several mature pampas
grass clumps were scattered among the seedlings. Also, several blueblossom, Ceanothus
thrysiflorus, were competing with the young redwoods. Four years ago when revisited, the
only evidence of the pampas grass were two old clump remnants with of 2-4 inches remaining
of several dead pampas grass seed stalks. The blueblossom bushes are not present.

Summary of Slump Jumble Cluster Criteria

1. All the largest mature redwoods are inside or directly on the periphery of the land scar
caused by the movement of the slump jumble.
2. The peripheral trees, and the few growing near the center, are uneven-aged with a high
degree of reproductive potential from sprouts, and possibly by seedlings on disturbed edge
areas. New reproduction has not increased the circumference of
the cluster.
3. When a treefall gap appears on the periphery, the new growth could be sprouts or
seedlings. Saplings occupy the soil exposed by the treefall in the root-pull pit and
rootwad. When increased light reaches into the cluster center area, redwood sprouts and
pioneer understory plants may appear near the edge.
4. On the southern exposure of the cluster the limbs of the peripheral trees reaching to or
near the ground form a barrier to light entering the cluster floor. On the opposite northern
side, the limbs may not reach the ground because the trunks are often highly self-
pruned. In Cluster #7, (the Piggyback Tree, Figure 6), a nearby redwood cluster uphill
blocks skylight resulting in self-prunings of the peripheral trees on the outside. Loss of
afternoon sun and skylight creates a shade limitation zone for the peripheral trees on the
northern side.
5. Another growth behavior that further limits light from entering the cluster is that the
peripheral crowns grow inward, meeting over the center. In an established old
cluster, very little sky light enters the cluster from either the sides or top center.

Slump Jumble Clusters on Adjacent Forest Stands

The Monte Toyon Conference Grounds is adjacent to MRA. The crest of Monte
Toyon Ridge is the property line. The conference grounds trail worker, Steven Miller, noted
clusters similar to those in Happy Valley.

Nearly all were slump jumble clusters, except for a small landslide which ended up at the
bottom of the ridge about five years ago. In this narrow landslide scar are four young
redwoods, apparently from seedlings that are growing amid brush and California blackberry.
The slope is east-facing as is the slope with clusters in Happy Valley.
The “Twisted Grove” on the Pourroy area of the lower area of FNMSP has been an
enigma to researchers. There appears to be a genetic and/or land disturbance effect causing
extreme twisted trunk formation in all the larger trees. After determining that slump jumbles
can create new redwood stands in the form of clusters, I returned to the twisted grove to find
that it also is on a large slump jumble. Some of the lower part of the jumble may have slid
over a high cliff into Aptos Creek. The size of the trees in the twisted grove cluster indicates
the twisted trees are at least several hundred years of age. However, it is not similar to the
Happy Valley circular clusters that have a central area where understory vegetation cannot
grow. In this twisted forest, there is substantial light entering the litter area from the sunny
side of the cluster, and understory plants are present. All the young redwood trees in these
clusters are not twisted, indicating that land movement was a factor.

Dominant Plant Species in the Slump Jumble Cluster Area

When a treefall gap occurs in this canopy circle through which additional light can
penetrate, some plants such as western hound’s tongue, Cynoglossum grande, an occasional
California blackberry vine, coffeeberry seedlings, and wood fern, may appear just inside the
cluster perimeter. Redwood sprouts are frequent around the bases of the slump jumble cluster
trees, but if there is no treefall gap, they die from shading by the time they are about six feet
tall. A few dead small redwoods up to 20 feet high are sometimes found nearer the center of a
cluster. They may have grown there when a gap appeared in the canopy, then died when the
gap closed. They may also be the slow growing trees in the center of the original seedling
cover following the slump jumble.
Douglas-fir is scattered, mostly in the higher portions of the ridge. In one of the larger
clusters, one of the largest peripheral members is a Douglas-fir (Figure 8). Tanoak does not
grow on this slope, and there are no other tree species found in a redwood cluster peripheral
circle except for the above Douglas-fir. Few ecotones occur where the cluster trees abut the
scrub and broad-leaf evergreens - the change is very abrupt.
Near the summit of Hawk Point ridge, coast live oaks are mixed with Shreve oak
canopies. The most prevalent shrub species is the California coffeeberry. In drier areas,
blueblossom, blue elderberry, and pink-flowering currant, Ribes sanguineum, are the main
shrub species. Near creek bottom areas, creek (Western) dogwood, Cornus sericea, is often
mixed with California coffeeberry.

The most prevalent scrub species are the California blackberry and the California
coffeeberry. These species are the primary shade tolerant pioneer species in a treefall gap.
Poison oak, Toxicodendron diversilobum is another dominant scrub species, and coyote brush,
Baccharis pilularis, sticky monkey flower, Mimulus aurantiacus, and oso berry shrubs,
Oemleria cerasiformis are scattered in the area. One of the major species associated with a
typical redwood understory is the redwood sorrel, Oxalis oregana. This species is not present
in Happy Valley, but is present almost throughout the remainder of the redwood growth areas
in FNMSP and in the riparian area of MRA. Western sword fern, Polystichum munitum,
bracken, Pteridium eguilinum, and wood fern, Dryopteris arguta occur throughout the area.



These species listings (Tables 1-4) are not checklists that were conducted by experts in
each division and class. These are a collection of our family’s and naturalist friends’
observations over 42 years. The scientific names of these species are not given in the text
below, but appear after the common name of each species in the tables.
Botanist Dean Taylor of the U.C. Berkeley Jepson Herbarium lives in the area. In
2002, he made public his checklist of plants for the entire Aptos Creek watershed, which
includes the MRA. His checklist included 344 native and 189 introduced plants for a total of
533 plant species. My listing of the common plants in MRA includes 64 native species, and
29 introduced plants, 18 of which are invasive (Table 5). Nearly all the exotic species are in or
along the edge of the dirt roads and trails.
Wild oats and rattlesnake grass appeared in the purple needlegrass fields about five
years ago. Advice from Director Janet Bridges (pers. comm.) of the California Native Grass
Association, is to eliminate the exotic annual grass species before they can seed, but it may be
too late to remove wild oats, ripgut and prickly clover.
The listings for mammal, amphibians, and reptiles are representative of the species for
MRA. Instructors for the Web of Life Field (WOLF) School environmental education school
have reported their observations in comparable redwood habitat in the adjoining Monte Toyon
forest reserve.
There has been a continuing apparent reduction in diversity of species, except for
plants, in the MRA. Fires have not been recorded for over a hundred years, but the overall
continuing change in MRA of vegetation and animal species and fire scars on old redwood
buttresses, indicates there was at least one intense fire in the MRA within the past 400-500
Other reasons for diversity and abundance change may be due to global warming, and
some migratory species may be losing their winter habitat in Central and South America.
There may be local negative wildlife effects in the riparian area of MRA, such as the increase
of homes nearby that has eliminated hunting, the removal of native habitat, and an increase in
house pets. Conversely, some species in areas adjacent to
suburban development may be enhanced by increases of food, water, and nesting habitat in
Dense redwood forest areas are typically low in species diversity for birds and
animals. The Mangels Ranch Area has an admixture of six plant communities. In the near
primeval Happy Valley area of about 60 acres, there is a diverse mosaic of ecotones where
several plant communities overlap. The MRA is high in species diversity because of the
habitat changes from the high ridge wind-blown plant communities of grass and scrub,
descending down into Happy Valley with its thick growths of Shreve oak and redwood
clusters, and then into the Mangels Gulch riparian vegetation with its shade tolerant plants,
including tanoak, clintonia, and redwood sorrel.
Road kills over the past 40 years on Cathedral Drive along one-half mile of the
eastern border of MRA were a few squirrels, raccoons, and in earlier years about an annual
kill of a striped skunk. Occasionally we see a dead acorn woodpecker or Steller’s jay that was
killed by cars while foraging on the road. Since the County’s loose dog ordinance was passed,
the isolated Happy Valley biota is beyond the influence of the road and homes along
Cathedral Drive.

Discussion by Species Group

Mammals (Table 1)

When hiking in nearly all the redwood parks in California, do not expect to see many
of the mammals present. Mule deer and brush rabbits are the only commonly seen mammals
in MRA. This listing includes only sight records, and does not represent a comprehensive
study of all mammalian species that would have been collected by systematic rodent live
trapping and from sooted track plates.
Mule deer are common and are seen about one out of five times when visiting the
MRA. They forage during day and night, and have been found bedding down in daytime
inside redwood clusters near the ridge line of Hawk Point. Deer foraging in MRA is mostly in
the needlegrass fields on the west slope of Hawk Point ridge. Animal trails pass through
Happy Valley as the deer move between the lower area of the park and the Monte Toyon
forested area and gardens.
Bobcats are rarely seen on the trails, but their segmented feces reveal steady use of the
area. Coyotes were not present from when we arrived in 1962 until about 1972. When coyotes
were not present, there was a buildup of deer, brush rabbits, and dusky-footed woodrats.
Coyotes finally found this food bonanza, and their population increased, changing
from observing an occasional coyote, to observing the formation of small coyote bands or
family groups. Coyotes could be heard throughout Happy Valley when a coyote family
harmonized together like wolves, or when a single coyote was announcing its presence for up
to a half hour with sharp yaps spaced a half-minute or so apart. When coyotes became more
numerous, they communicated more with their stereotypic “howl” followed by several rapid
yips, then followed by silence, awaiting a reply. As the coyote’s food became scarce, we saw
and heard fewer and fewer each year. Now we don’t hear them, but a few coyotes are around
as evidenced by their scats. One year, a coyote den was located in Happy Valley on Monte
Toyon ridge. Pet cats in nearby home areas were consumed by coyotes - cat flea collars were
occasionally seen on MRA trails.

The longtail weasel has not been seen for over 20 years. Other mammals that were
common but are seldom seen now are the mostly nocturnal opossum and striped skunk.
Raccoons are commonly seen at nighttime. The western gray squirrel, eastern fox squirrel, and
Merriam chipmunk are occasionally seen.
Grass, garden, and crop habitats are sometimes invaded by an exponential increase of
California voles. They behave in MRA as elsewhere by suddenly appearing in large numbers,
sometimes scampering about in daytime in unprotected areas as well as in our kitchen when the
door is open on warm days. Each invasion lasts from one to three years. A small population
explosion of voles occurred in 2002 in and near the riparian area of MRA.
Gophers and ground squirrels occur only in the more open areas outside of redwood
concentrations. We have seen only one ground squirrel in the riparian area, and only two
infestations of gophers over the 42 years. Very few gophers and ground squirrels live in
needlegrass fields, possibly because few forbs and biennial plants are present for food.
Feral pigs appeared in MRA four years ago, with at least two sows with nine young and
possibly several single animals. Feral pigs had been sighted elsewhere in the higher
mountainous areas in FNMSP for many years. Pig damage in 2002 to the vegetation in MRA
was the uprooting of about 1/8 acre of needlegrass perennial clumps. After the first rain of 2003,
they “nosed” the needlegrass field but did not do much damage.
I use the term “nosed,” because when trapping feral pigs for the CDFG while we lived
in Carmel Valley, I observed some of their foraging strategies. When searching for food they
dig into the upper layer of soil, humus, or grass field with one or two short thrusts with the
snout, then they move on, periodically nosing into the ground until they find food. Their forage
could be acorns or dead animals on the ground surface. In forest litter and in grassland soil, the
food items could be sprouting acorns, roots, bulbs, worms, and fungi possibly including truffles.
During early dawn in Carmel Valley I observed a sow with little ones foraging in a wet
alfalfa field. The sow made frequent downhill furrows one snout wide for 3-8 feet at a time.
Her eager young followed, picking out the goodies from the loose soil. I saw evidence in July,
2004 in MRA that a pig had rooted up and eaten on the roots of a cow parsnip.
After the first rains in 2004, the pigs used three clay wallowing areas in MRA almost
every day, one on Hawk Point and the others to the west and downhill in a clay formation below
the needlegrass field. After they wallow on Hawk Point, they often rub their sides and backs on
a nearby large sturdy redwood bench that was built for use when the area is opened to the
public. We occasionally scrape off the mud. In winter 2005, tracks of only two pigs were seen at
the wallowing area on Hawk Point. Pigs have not been seen in MRA since January, 2005.
There were several rare observations of other animals worthy of mentioning. A Merriam
chipmunk was seen running between wood piles with a writhing baby garter snake in its mouth.
Two male brush rabbits were fighting in the road to town in early morning. We stopped the car
and watched because they would not stop their intense sparring. The physically helpless
opossum has a method of survival when attacked by excreting cadaverine and putrescine on its
skin making it impossible for a predatory mammal to bite it. The neighbor’s German shepherd
was barking fiercely some 100 yards into forest.

I went to find an opossum lying “dead” on the ground. The dog would attempt to bite the
animal, but was repulsed each time by the putrid odor. I got a shovel and carried the animal
(with the shovel pointing to the side) to a safe place. The odor was nauseating.

Amphibians and Reptiles (Table 2)

These classes of animals are common in MRA, with 15 species observed. Our property
spans Mangels Gulch Creek, and a red-legged frog from the nearby Mangels Gulch creek
appeared in our fish pond where it remained for several days. I did not know the significance
of this event at that time. Several years ago a Santa Cruz county environmental officer
inquired if we had seen red-legged frogs in the Mangels Gulch creek. Fortunately we had
taken a picture of the frog in the fish pond. I showed him the picture which was clear enough
for positive identification. We were familiar with the yellow-legged frog which was not
present in this creek. The red-legged frogs were present in Mangels Gulch creek for only a
few years after we arrived.
The California newt also disappeared in Mangels Gulch at this same time. In their
land wanderings, California newts would occasionally appear in our fish pond. The creek was
running year-long at that time. From about 1967 to 1985, water did not flow in the creek
during summer. However, there has been a year-long flow since about 1985, probably from
the increase in septic tank drains throughout the Mangels Gulch watershed far upstream from
the MRA and our home.
The Pacific tree frog is the most common amphibian in MRA. It is found in the woods
where it can be heard vocalizing in spring.
When water was flowing year-long, giant salamanders were observed swimming in the
creek, most likely for spawning. After spawning they return to damp areas on land. I found
one on the foundation of our house which is about 40 feet from the creek. Another was found
crawling over our brick patio after a rain.
The most common salamanders in MRA are the California slender salamander, and the
Ensatina. They frequent deteriorating logs and rocky areas in the forest floor debris, and in
and around woodrats’ nests. Arboreal salamanders frequent limb holes on oak trees were
water can accumulate in winter, and are scattered among the damp forest debris of logs and
limbs and dead brush piles. They favor cracks in rock and brick work.
Rattlesnakes have not been seen or reported in the MRA. The MRA area is either too
cold and/or there is not sufficient food for this species in the deep forested areas. During the
first about 10 years, the ring-neck snake was common in our garden and in several Happy
Valley brush pile areas. The ring-necked snake has not been seen for many years. Gopher
snakes are rarely seen now, but sharp-tailed snakes are more frequently observed in brush and
litter piles.
The aquatic and western terrestrial garter snakes are the most common snakes in the
riparian area. Snakes have not been seen in the deep-shaded slump jumble clusters, in the
needlegrass fields, or in the heavily shaded areas under Shreve oak canopies. However, there
has not been a habitat search for snakes so as to not disturb the redwood cluster habitat.

Birds (Table 3)

The Mangels Ranch Area does not have a great abundance of birds compared to
wetland and Wildlife Refuge wintering populations. However, the six plant communities in
MRA yield a high diversity of species compared to the low bird diversity of thick redwood
Most of the 60 bird species listed here are residential. Our bird identifications were not
made on search patterns designed to record all species. I did not have time during the redwood
research to attempt to identify birds which were hard to identify by sight or sound. When the
MRA area becomes a natural study area, there will be an attempt to attain a more
comprehensive bird checklist. I will relate some of the unique behavior activities that are
probably linked to habitat change.
Most interesting was the varying abundance of some species from year to year. The
drought years of 1975-77 resulted in major disruptions in bird behavior and distribution in the
area. The most dramatic was the disappearance of the California thrasher from the MRA.
These birds were heard from 1962 to 1975, singing in almost every month, but especially after
rains. They nested in a large patch of Northern Coastal Scrub near the northern junction of
Hawk Point and Monte Toyon ridges (Figure 3).
In the first year of the 2-year drought in 1975, the thrashers stopped singing. Our
watered garden is about a half-mile from this thrasher site. One of the thrashers joined the
other bird species that were concentrating in our garden. The garden area covered about 1/4
acre, although heavy watering was limited to a much smaller area. The thrasher stayed all
summer and until next spring . It did not return to the scrub patch, and thrashers have not re-
established residency in MRA.
A humorous behavior of the thrasher was to remain close to our grain feeding area for
a covey of around 15 California quail that visited us every winter day. At the beginning of a
feeding, the thrasher defended this area of about 10 x 10 feet. It scampered with its long bill
extended toward the first quail to come to the feeding station, and continued harassing them
for a few minutes. The quail persisted, and the thrasher eventually stopped and watched the
quail. The thrasher did not eat grain, but its genetic message apparently was to chase quail
away that entered its “territory.” Possibly there is competition with quail for insects or other
food items in the thrasher’s natural habitat.
There have been major changes in abundance of several species. Varied thrushes were
very common in all the wooded areas of MRA during winter until about 8-10 years ago. They
are rarely seen in MRA now, and in recent years, not at all.
Other birds declining in occurrence are the barn owl, saw whet owl, red-tailed hawk,
and orange-crowned warbler. More dramatic than the thrasher’s appearance, was the arrival in
1992 of numerous pygmy nuthatches which had not be previously seen in MRA. They
remained about three years. With them were also a marked increase of the winter visitor
Townsend warbler, and an increase of a common resident, the chestnut-backed chickadee. The
rainfalls in 1990-91 and 1991-92 seasons were below normal (20 and 27 inches respectively),
but they were higher than the 14 and 16 inch annual rainfall respectively in the 1975-76 and
1976-77 drought seasons.
In 1992, a pair of pygmy owls during daytime frequented a limb of a Japanese maple
tree, Acer palmatum hanging over our fish pond. We knew that great horned owls

capture fish from streams at night, but we were surprised to see that the sharp talon-like marks
on the goldfish that escaped an attack in the fish pond were probably caused by these pygmy
owls. Small goldfish had been disappearing, and now we knew why. From their perch about 8
feet above the water, the owls would stare at the fish, moving their heads back and forth. They
did not attack the goldfish possibly because we were standing nearby taking pictures. Later, a
pygmy owl took a daytime bath in a water puddle made when watering our garden, then flew
up into a madrone tree to preen. Pygmy owls have not been seen in daytime in MRA since
Red-tailed hawks have decreased, but about six or seven years ago red-shouldered
hawks became numerous and noisy, nesting in several areas of the MRA. This year red
shouldered hawks have been observed capturing band-tailed pigeons.
In October 2004 before the rains, band-tailed pigeons were probably reacting to the
condition of no rains for many months and conducted an invasion we had not seen in the 42
years we lived here. We maintain four small drinking and bathing areas used by several
species of birds around the garden. The fish pond also is sometimes used for drinking by
birds, but rarely for bathing. One morning a band of from 30-40 band-tailed pigeons started
visiting all the water supply areas in our yard for drinking, and eventually for bathing. The 4 x
9 feet fish pond is deep, up to 18 inches, and the pigeons could not bathe adequately by trying
to cling on the steep sides. After several tries they eventually followed one of their creative
members that landed in the water and bathed while floating. Soon chaos occurred with most
of the flock now attracted to the fish pond, creating a remarkable mass of flapping wings, with
an occasional pigeon banging harmlessly into the kitchen window, which we were behind.
Apparently there was enough reflective effect in the window that they did not see us, and
several tried to fly through. They remained in the bathing pattern on the water from 3 to 15
seconds, then flew to an oak or madrone branch nearby to preen. Afterward, all the water
devises including the fish pond had a thin layer of a fine a grayish substance, possibly fine
pieces of feather and skin.
The Steller’s jay is most commonly seen in the wooded areas, the Western scrub jay
nests in the brush. The most common resident birds in MRA are: dark-eyed junco, spotted
towhee, California (brown) towhee, song sparrow, brown creeper, acorn woodpecker, great
horned owl, hairy woodpecker, red-shouldered hawk, chestnut-backed chickadee, bush tit,
band-tailed pigeon, winter wren, Bewick’s wren, and wren tit. The pileated woodpecker
visited the MRA for about two weeks in spring of 2005 for the first time. This species was
reported in many places in Santa Cruz County in 2004.
Common breeding summer visitors are: Swainson’s thrush, mourning dove,
American robin, black-headed grosbeak, Wilson’s warbler, Anna’s hummingbird, Pacific
slope flycatcher, violet-green swallow, and mourning dove. The Townsend warbler appears in
fall and remains part of the winter, but is now uncommon.

Plants (Tables 4 and 5)

The only observed major change in plant diversity and abundance has been the
continuing introduction and increase of exotic plants, mostly from the Mediterranean area of
Europe. Several years ago the invasive prickly clover appeared on Hawk Point and

along the edges of the trails on the west-facing slope of Hawk Point ridge, and in the
needlegrass field. A concerted effort to remove this invasive will be initiated. In Happy
Valley, my wife and I have removed the English ivy growing on the trees, and a large patch of
poison hemlock. The CSP has conducted extensive removal of English ivy, Cape ivy, and
periwinkle in the riparian area, and of French broom, Pampas grass, and English holly from
the upper trail areas.
The purple needlegrass is on the California Department of Fish and Game’s Heritage
listing of plants, and was named the State’s official grass in 2005. Before Western influence,
the purple needlegrass was one of the most widespread and abundant bunchgrass in the state
for native grazing animals.
There are flowering plants in the needlegrass field, but the grass fields here are not as
colorful as the massive color splashes found in the southern slopes of the coastal range. The
flowering plants occur in the spaces between the needlegrass bunches. The somewhat rare
California bottle-brush grass is found scattered in disturbed areas of the oak and brush
ecotones. It is a large perennial grass with culms over five feet high. On each culm (as many
as a dozen culms per plant) is a tight mass of drooping, heavily awned seeds. In mid-summer
they turn a bright golden yellow and present a bright patch of color amid the almost
monotonous mass of shades of green of the other plants. Be careful to not brush against one of
stems when hiking, because the seeds when dried easily fly off when touched, one may land
in your mouth. The awns are heavily barbed. I had a very frightening time before I could
remove a seed from my mouth.
Flowering plants in the brush and oak areas are the sticky monkeyflower, sneezeweed,
and blue witch. During spring, the pink flowering currant, the blueblossom, and the small
colorful ground rose add color to the brush areas. A thick concentration of golden brodaeia,
buttercup, and butter-and-eggs in late spring appears in the saddle area where the Hawk Point
and Monte Toyon ridges meet (Figure 2). Occasional patches up to a foot in diameter of blue-
eyed grass appear in the needlegrass fields with scattered butter-and-eggs and harvest
brodaeia. I have not had the time to key out all the grasses in MRA, and remember only a few
of them from my grass identification course at U.C. Berkeley. Botanist Dean Taylor listed 30
species of native grasses and 37 introduced grass species for the Aptos Creek watershed.


Insect changes are somewhat like that of other species groups, exhibiting a lessening
both in diversity and abundance of many species over the years. In one year in the 1970’s, a
large number of golden garden spiders, Miranda aurantia appeared in our garden and in the
MRA near us. The Ceanothus moth, Hyalophora euryalus was present in the area for about 20
years, but none have been banging into our lit windows at night since then.
Casually looking at butterflies we have seen the following species in MRA: Western
Tiger Swallowtail, Papilo rutulus; Anis Swallowtail, Papilo zelicaon; Monarch, Danaus
plexippus; Callippe fritillary, Speyeruia callippe; Variable checkerspot, Euphydryas
chalcedona; common buckeye, Junonia coenia; painted lady, Vanessa cardui; red admiral,
Vanessa atalanta; Lorquin’s admiral, Limenitis lorquini; California sister, Adelpha bredowii;
mourning cloak, Nymphalis antiopa; and two species of blues or azures.

TABLE 1. Mammals Observed in the Mangels Ranch Area

Opossum, Didelphis virginianus

California mole, Scapanus latimanus
Shrew, Sorex, sp
Shrew-mole, Neilrotrichus gibbsi
Raccoon, Procyon lotor
Longtail Weasel, Mustela frenata
Striped Skunk, Mephitis mephitis
Coyote, Canis latrans
Bobcat, Lynx rufus
California Ground Squirrel, Citellus beecheyi
Western Gray Squirrel, Sciurus griseus
Eastern Fox Squirrel, Sciurus niger
Merriam Chipmunk, Eutamias merriami
Pocket Gopher, Thomomys bottae
Deer Mouse, Peromyscus californicus
Dusky-footed Woodrat, Neotoma fuscipes
California Vole, Microtus californicus
Brush Rabbit, Sylvilagus bachmani
European Pig, Sus scrofa
Mule Deer, Odocoileus hemionus

TABLE 2. Amphibians and Reptiles Observed in the Mangels Ranch Area

California Giant Salamander, Dicamptodon ensatus

California Newt, Taricha torosa
Ensatina, Ensatina eschscholtzii
Arborial Salamander, Aneides lugubris
California Slender Salamander, Batrachoseps attenuatus
Pacific Treefrog, Hyla regilla
Red-legged Frog, Rana aurora
Western Fence Lizard, Sceloporus occidentalis
Northern Alligator Lizard, Elgaria coerulea
Rubber Boa, Charina bottae
Ring-necked Snake, Diadophis punctatus
Sharp-tailed Snake, Contia tenuis
Gopher Snake, Pituophis catenifer
Aquatic Garter Snake, Thamnophis atratus
Western Terrestrial Garter Snake, Thamnophis elegans

Birds observed in the Mangels Ranch Area, 1962 - 2004

Turkey Vulture, Cathartes aura Barn Swallow, Hirundo rustica

Golden Eagle, Aquila chrysaetos Wrentit, Chamaea fasciata
Sharp-shinned Hawk, Accipiter striatus Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Regulus calendula
Cooper’s Hawk, Accipiter cooperii Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Poecile rufescens
Red-shouldered Hawk, Buteo lineatus Bushtit, Psaltriparus minimus
Red-tailed Hawk, Buteo jamaicensis Brown Creeper, Certhia Americana
American Kestrel, Falco sparverius Pigmy Nuthatch, Sitta pygmaea
California Quail, Callipepla californica Winter Wren, Troglodytes troglodytes
Band-tailed Pigeon, Columba fasciata Bewick’s Wren, Thryomanes bewickii
Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura Swainson’s Thrush, Catharus ustulatus
Barn Owl, Tyto alba Hermit Thrush, Catharus guttatus
Great Horned Owl, Bubo virginianus Varied Thrush, Ixoreus naevius
Western Screech Owl, Otus kennicottii American Robin, Turdus migratorius
Northern Pygmy Owl, Glaucidium gnoma California Thrasher, Toxostoma redivivum
Northern Saw-whet Owl, Aegolius acadicus European Starling, Sturnus vulgaris
Anna’s Hummingbird, Calypte anna Orange-crowned Warbler, Vermivora celata
Allen’s Hummingbird, Selasphorus sasin Townsend’s Warbler, Dendroica townsendi
Acorn Woodpecker, Melanerpes formicivorus Wilson’s Warbler, Wilsonia pusilla
Downy Woodpecker, Picoides pubescens California Towhee (brown), Pipilo crissalis
Hairy Woodpecker, Picoides villosus Spotted Towhee, Pipilo maculatus
Pileated Woodpecker, Dryocopus pileatus Fox Sparrow, Passerella iliaca
Northern Flicker, Colaptes auratus Song Sparrow, Melospiza melodia
Olive-sided Flycatcher, Contopus cooperi Golden-crowned Sparrow Zonotrichia atricapilla
Western Wood Pewee, Contopus sordidulus Dark-eyed Junco, Junco hyemalis
Pacific-slope Flycatcher, Empidonax difficilis Black-headed Grosbeak, Pheucticus melanocephalus
Hutton’s Vireo, Vireo huttoni Purple Finch, Carpodacus purpureus
Steller’s Jay, Cyanocitta stelleri House Finch, Carpodacus mexicanus
Western Scrub Jay, Aphelocoma californica Pine Siskin, Carduelis pinus
American Crow, Corvus brachyrhynchos American Goldfinch, Carduelis tristis
Common Raven, Corvus corax
Violet-green Swallow, Tachycineta thalassina
TABLE 4. Partial Listing of Native Plant Species Observed in the
Mangels Ranch Area

Trees Giant Chain Fern, Woodwardia fimbriata

Big-leaf Maple, Acer macrophyllum Western Sword Fern, Polystichum munitum
Coast Redwood, Sequoia sempervirens Hoary Nettle, Urtica dioica
California Bay, Umbellularia californica Hairy Honeysuckle, Lonicera hispidula
California Sycamore, Platanus racemosa Gold-backed Fern, Pentagramma triangularis
Madrone, Arbutus menziesii Western Flat-topped Goldenrod, Euthamia occidentalis
Coast Live Oak, Quercus agrifolia Marsh Baccharis, Baccharis douglasii
Shreve Oak, Quercus parvula,var. shrevei
Tanoak, Lithocarpus densiflorus Flowering Plants
Arroyo Willow, Salix lasiolepis Blue-eyed grass, Sisyrinchium bellum
Douglas-Fir, Pseudotsuga menziesii Milk Maids, Cardamine californica
Hounds Tongue, Cynogiossum grande
Shrubs and Understory Low Vegetation Blue Witch, Solanum umbelliferum
Deer Brush, Ceanothus integerrimus Douglas Nightshade, Solanum douglasii
California hazelnut, Corylus cornuta Common Nightshade, Solanum americanum
Coyote Brush, Baccharis pilularis Yellow Violet, Viola glabella
California Coffeeberry, Rhamnus californica Butter and eggs, Triphysaria eriantha
Oso Berry, Osmaronia cerasiformis Golden Brodiea, Brodiea lutea
California Huckleberry, Vaccinium ovatum Harvest Brodiea, Brodiea elegans
Blue Elderberry, Sambucus mexicana California Dandelion, Agoseris grandiflora
Cow Parsnip, Heracleum lanatum Hedge-nettle, Stachys ajugoides
Pink-flowering Currant, Ribes sanguineum Mariposa Lily,Yellow, Calochortus luteus
Sticky Monkeyflower, Mimulus aurantiacus California Poppy, Eschscholzia californica
California Sage, Artemisia californica Woodland Strawberry, Fragaria fresca
Thimbleberry, Rubus parviflorus Red Clintonia, Clintonia andrewsiana
California Blackberry, Rubus ursinus Owls-clover, Castilleja densiflora
Ground Rose, Rosa gymnocarpa Hooker’s Fairy Bell, Disporum hookeri
Poison Oak, Toxicodendron diversiloba Long-tubed Iris, Iris macrosiphon
Wild Cucumber, Marah fabaceus Western Morning-glory, Calystegia occidentalis
Creeping Wild Ginger, Asarum caudatum Trillium, western, Trillium ovatum
Bracken Fern, Pteridium aquilum Trillium, giant, Trillium chloropetalum
Lady Fern, Athyrium filix-femina Violet, yellow, Viola glabella
Wood Fern, Dryopterus arguta
Fern, Polypodium sp.

TABLE 5. Listing of Introduced Invasive Plants in the Mangels Ranch Area

Bamboo, Bambusa sp
Blackberry, Himalaya, Rubus procerus
Broom, French, Genista monspessulana
Clover, prickly, Trifolium angustifolium
Eupatorium, sticky, Ageratina adenophora
Forget-me-not, Myosotis latifolia
Hemlock, poison, Conium maculatum
Holly, English, Ilex aquifolium
Ivy, English, Hedera helix
Ivy, Cape, Delaireia odorata
Fireweed, Australian, Erechtites minima
Rattlesnake grass, Briza maxima
Ripgut, Bromus diandrus
Wild oats, Avena sativa
Pampas grass, Cortaderia selloana
Periwinkle, Vinca major
Thistle, bull, Cirsium vulgare
Thistle, Italian, Carduus pycnocephalus

APPENDIX I - The Mill Valley Cluster (Jepson’s Circle)

The formation of redwood clusters has not been addressed adequately by researchers.
In the text above, a series of discussions above addresses the dynamics of sprout rings
(sometimes called “fairy rings”) and their possible role in the formation of what are called
circles (Jepson, 1910), or redwood clusters. However, the very common sprout rings around a
cut stump are also called “clusters” by harvesters. From experiments in the Jackson
Demonstration State Forest, Reed Noss reports how silvicultural practices may remove sprout
rings as an “approach to selection management.”5p.239
Review of information in the text above. A cluster is a group of large and small
redwoods existing as an isolated permanent grouping surrounded by other plant communities,
or may be present within a larger redwood forested area. The size of clusters observed in the
Forest of Nisene Marks State Park and in other forested areas I have visited range from 30-
110 feet across and contain from 12-16 redwoods over 12 inches dbh. Where several isolated
groupings of redwoods appear near each other on a slope such as in Happy Valley, the trees
that form a contiguous crown cover are considered a cluster. This crown cover inhibits
understory growth by greatly reducing light penetration into the center of the cluster (Figures
6-9, and 10).
Clusters are uncommon in an uneven-aged old-growth redwood forest. In large
redwood forests, spacing of the giants and their self-pruning allows penetration of sufficient
light to establish an understory.
When I first saw these clusters in the Mangels Ranch area, it reminded me of the
experiment in Joseph Kittredge’s Forest Influences course in a redwood grove in Strawberry
Canyon, University of California, Berkeley. We learned about the formation inside the grove
of a more suitable micro-climate for redwoods that was created by the redwoods. I felt that
this adaptation enabled the redwoods to exist in the oak woodland and brush area of the
Mangels Ranch Area. At that time I was not concerned how these clusters formed and attained
their size and apparently high longevity, with many of the larger trees in the periphery over
700 years of age.
It was not until the threat of logging this uncut old-growth forest in 1996 that I
became interested in the process of cluster formation. County Environmental officer David
Hope, testified at the Calif. Dept. of Forestry and Fire Protection (CDF) hearing on the
Timber Harvest Plan. Where Dave Hope had lived in Mendocino County, he had not seen
such formations as these clusters. He requested for the county that the area not be cut. I then
realized that these clusters were unique and needed protection. Mark Demming of the Santa
Cruz County Planning Department had sent a letter to the CDF that Santa Cruz County would
appeal a CDF decision to log the MRA because it was one of the few remaining areas of the
county containing uncut old growth.

The reply at the hearing to Dave Hope’s by the CDF officiating Forester at the
hearing, was that these large clusters were rings that formed around “mother trees.”
This event started my scientific interest in these clusters. I could not imagine how a
ring of redwood trees can continue to expand around a single parent tree. Second generation
sprout rings are common around almost every cut stump in the FNMSP, but, in the “fairy
ring” hypothesis, where are the rotted stumps of trees that died creating new rings of trees
generation after generation? I have not seen or encountered evidence of this in the field or in
the literature. And, new generations of young trees forming new rings are not present around
the outer perimeter of any of the MRA clusters. New trees in the clusters I have studied
remain inside of and among the peripheral boundary trees (Figures 6-8 and 10).
Reed Noss5 reveals another possible cluster development process involving
lignotubers that form “fairy rings”. My interpretation of the fungus “fairy ring” process
projected to the redwood is that lignototuber growth from the next ring of trees expands
through the soil eventually forms a circular pattern of trees.
The Jepson circle. Evidence given for this possibility is from an article by Willis
Jepson in a 1910 article in THE SILVA OF CALIFORNIA. Also, Reed Noss5 referred to the

information reported by Harvard University’s Peter Del Tredici50,58 of the Arnold Arboretum,
a prominent author on lignotubers. Del Tredici reported a massive 525 ton lignotuber that was
revealed by erosion at Big Lagoon south of Eureka (Del Tredici, 1999 58p.19). The growth was
41 feet across and about 16 feet deep, with at least seven trees growing off this massive
runaway lignotuber (see above information on pages 58-59).
I am reluctant to accept the above as a common formation of clusters because I found
positive evidence of the formation process of most of the clusters in Happy Valley. These
clusters start their formation where a slump jumble exposes mineral soil allowing redwood
seedlings to grow. The seedlings are at first in competition with pioneer plants of abutting
plant communities, and then are in competition for light between all the redwoods in the
cluster for many hundreds of years. This process results in a cluster perimeter of up to about
20 large redwoods. These peripheral trees form a contiguous dense canopy that precludes a
typical redwood forest understory. These slump jumble clusters are long-lived and uneven
aged, with many of the peripheral trees over 700-800 years of age.
New reproduction in these “slump jumble clusters” is from treefall gaps and possibly
light intensity fires. New growth is possible only within the immediate zone of the cluster
perimeter. The original land scar edges of the slump jumble are visible, and mark the
permanent limits of the cluster (Figures 6-8).
New Forming Cluster. This process is confirmed in Happy Valley by a new forming
cluster created by a small mechanical clearing of brush near a large cluster about 30 years ago.
The cluster process is continuing as described above with most of the centrally positioned
redwood saplings dead or dying (Figure 9).

However, these slump jumble clusters in the Mangels Ranch Area do not represent the growth
formation process of a circle forming in the 1800’s reported by Jepson that is on flat land in
the photo of the cluster in Jepson52. I visited the Mill Valley area to find this circle. A
redwood circle used for divinity meetings was not in the records of the History Department of
the Mill Valley library or the Mill Valley Historical Society. The cluster of redwoods chosen
to be similar to the Jepson circle I call the ”Mill Valley Cluster.” It is similar in diameter and
number and size of the old-growth stumps as in Jepson’s circle, but is not conclusively the one
described by Jepson.
Jepson thought the trees (then only evidenced by stumps) forming the original circle
were second-growth trees spreading from around a parent tree stump that Jepson presumed
was burned. Apparently evidence of the stump was not present.

In the centre once stood the parent; the stumps represent the
second generation while the living trees are of the third
generation at least.52p.133

In the Mill Valley Cluster area, all the large trees adjacent to the now mostly burned
and deteriorated stumps are second-growth. Jepson would have called these third-growth.
The logging near the mill started about 1836. All the old-growth red-woods were eventually
cut on this approximately one-quarter mile long flat area adjacent to a creek.
Dr. Richard Beidleman, Historian at the Jepson Herbarium found that Jepson’s Mill
Valley circle data were collected by Jepson in 1898, and that Jepson did not say exactly where
it was in Mill Valley. The information so far still does not disprove the fact that in this case
the Mill Valley Cluster perimeter trees could have been formed by some sort of massive
lignotuber growth. This is an important research problem because Jepson’s circle information
is the only printed statement of this possibility. Del Tredici reports:

The potential dimensions of the redwood lignotuber were first

suggested by W.I.Jepson, who described a clump of 45 large
redwoods that formed a third-generation “fairy ring” fifty feet
by fifty-six feet across.58p.20 (emphasis mine)

All the trees in the area now are in the same size range as in the Mill Valley Cluster.
Jepson did not use the poetic “fairy ring” in his report. The earliest reference to “fairy circles”
I have seen is in Jack London’s65 THE VALLEY OF THE MOON: “More leaping tree
squirrels, more ruddy madronos and majestic oaks, more fairy circles of
redwoods ...”.
The following are the quotations from Jepson’s 1898 field notes (note the use of both
circumference and diameter):

Jepson Field Book Vol. 1. Mill Valley, Nov.7, 1898 (page

182).First circle of Redwoods: 45 x 51 ft., with 45 trees not
counting the smaller ones. Circumference of the larger trees in
feet and tenths: 6; 5.3; 4.6; 5.2. Also 14 stumps of previous
generation. Stumps far from perfect now. Diameter in feet and
tenths: 3.7; 3.8; 3; 2.3; 2.3; 3.6; 2; 3; 4.3; 4.1; 4.2; 4.8;
1.9; 2.7. Trunk with hollow centre, one side gone; 3 young
trees around it at 5 ft. from ground circumferences - 8ft.;
9ft.; 6ft. Second and third growth in Mill Valley: 30 to 70 ft.
high. (From Dr. Richard G. Beidleman, Research Associate, Jepson
Herbarium. UC Berkeley, October 14, 2004)

After receiving these data from Dr. Beidleman, I returned to the Mill Valley Cluster
hoping to find the diagnostic chimney tree with three large redwoods nearby. I could only
imagine some evidence of it. If this is the “Jepson’s circle”, the chimney tree was cut or fell
down. However, the stump of the chimney tree could look like several of the stumps that have
fire cavities. A high degree of fire evidence from the logging practices of those days was
throughout this small clearcut forest.
What is most important is to determine if redwood clusters that are not identifiable as
slump jumble clusters could be formed by expanding lignotubers. The popular poetic “fairy
ring” is believed to be the process by some people. If the cluster at the Old Mill park we have
chosen is not Jepson’s circle, it is still a case for lignotuber expansion. Slump jumble clusters
I have studied (Figures 6-8) do not form a growth of almost abutting trees forming a distinct
circle of trees as does the Mill Valley Cluster (Figures 10 and 11). As Del Tredici relates58,
Jepson “first described” circle growth, indicating this near circular pattern is rare. Jepson had
visited redwood forest stands throughout most of the redwood range.
At this point, one solution of this enigma is to genetically test the origins of the trees in
the Mill Valley Cluster. If they are from one parent tree, as surmised by Jepson and by those
who believe in the mother tree/”fairy ring” process, the process may be validated.
Because of the evidence of the massive 41 foot wide 525 ton lignotuber near Eureka
reported by Del Tredici, it could still be recognized that lignotubers may be involved in the
formation of large clusters. Lignotubers obviously are important because ground sprouts
originate on them, but the question is, how often and how far are lignotubers involved in
development of large expanding clusters from parent trees?

Figure 10. Diameters at dbh, burl-lignotuber growths, and stump remains of the possible “Jepson
circle” in Mill Valley.

Figure 11. Photos of second-growth redwoods in the Mill Valley Cluster, July 2004. Note the severe
wearing of burl growth at the base of each tree.

Appendix II

Examples of tree growth in response to light, ground water, rainfall, and injury to the
cambium of a redwood downed in the Mangels Ranch Area.

In January, 2005 a redwood was cut down because it was beginning to lean over a
cabin after heavy rains. This tree was cut in sections and remains along the edge of a dirt road
where it has provided educational evidence of the possible effects of rainfall, ground water
(from both from rainfall and a new septic tank leach field), light intensity, and injury to the
cambium formation zone in the buttress in 1982.
The following analysis of cause and effect of tree growth is mostly subjective because
measurements were not made of light intensity reaching the tree, and hydrogen isotope
experiments were not conducted to determine how much water intake was from rainfall or
groundwater that including a new leach field. However, the tree has been observed for over 40
years, and there is considerable information available about the tree and its habitat. This
(1) Diameter and annual ring growth data for trunk cross sections throughout the
length of the tree.
(2) Annual rainfall records for Santa Cruz that has less average rainfall than Aptos, but
is representative of the rainfall each year for Aptos. Fog drip is extremely low in this area and
is insignificant.
(3) The damage done to the base of the study tree, and a leach field installed nearby in
early 1982 appear to have been causes of growth change.
(4) Increasing height of the water table around the leach field, and removal of an oak
tree in 1995 increasing direct sun and sky light to the tree may have added to increased growth
in this phase.
The study tree was at least 61 years of age and 80 feet in height when cut down. Fifty
annual growth rings appeared at 8.4 feet above the ground (Figure 12), but at 2.0 feet above
ground, 59 rings are present. Accounting for at least one or two year’s growth below two feet,
the age was at least 61 growing seasons. Incomplete rings are not present, and, at least since
1982, extra rings or missing rings did not occur. This is important because it had been
reported in the literature that when counting rings on large redwood trees, consider the
accuracy somewhere between plus or minus ten years. Fires can interrupt the formation of
growth rings, but fires have not been recorded in this area for well over 100 years.
The study tree was located at the edge of a dirt fire road where a ditch on the upper
side of the road serves as a winter drainage channel for part of Hawk Point Ridge. The tree
was under a dense canopy of Shreve oak on a 50% + slope. Reduction of light was also caused
by large Douglas-firs and old-growth redwoods several hundred feet away to the east and
south. The damage to the tree that created the highly distorted

buttress (Figures 12 and 4.17) occurred in 1982 when it was about nine inches in diameter. At
that time a cabin had to be moved because it was now on an overhanging bank on Mangels
Gulch after the bank erosion of the major storm of the first week of January. The highest
runoff in Mangels Gulch is rarely over 3 feet deep, but in this storm it was nearly 8 feet deep.
A new large septic drainfield had to be installed midway between the main house and
to where the cabin was to be moved. The cabin was moved to within 20 feet of the study tree
that was now 15 feet from a leach field. During each of these operations heavy equipment
was used including a backhoe and trucks with winches and cables that were anchored to the
bases of trees. One of the cables was attached to a large madrone tree and the other to the
study redwood. The madrone was inspected but was not damaged. Close inspection was not
made at that time to see if damage had occurred to the redwood tree.
In 1982, the diameter of the trunk at 2.0 feet from the ground (Figure 4.17) was about
9 inches. In 2005, at 2.0 feet above the ground the longest diameter of the now distorted
buttress was 33 inches (Figure 4.17), and in 2005, the diameter was 25 inches at 8.4 feet from
the ground (Figures 4.4 and 12).
Besides responding directly to the injury in 1982, the tree had been growing
eccentrically to reach light under oak canopy. The tree for the about 40 feet of its height grew
at an angle to the ground to reach the skylight over the abutting dirt roadbed. In 1995, the
study tree received more direct sun and more skylight when a large Shreve oak uphill that was
shading the study tree was removed. This appears to have contributed to an increase of tree
Serious drain field problems started about 12 years ago. The water table depth rose
from 11 feet depth in June, 1982 when the leach field was installed to 6.5 feet below the
surface in June, 2005. As soon as the leach field was completed, water from this septic system
may have reached the roots of this the study tree.


The following is what I surmise are contributing factors to growth changes that appear
to be in three growth phase periods (Figure 12.)

Phase 1. During the early growth period from up to 1982 there was no apparent
relationship between rainfall extremes and growth - it appeared that light was the transcending
growth limiting factor. Growth greatly increased after the 1982-83 heavy rainfall years, but at
the same time injury of the cambium at the base may have contributed to increased tree
growth and distorted buttress growth (Figures 4.17 and 12).

The redwood is a resilient and adaptive species that has the ability to compensate for
injury by rapid growth and formation of vegetative structures such as sprouts and reiterations.
Part of this process is that a hormone that normally inhibits the production of dormant buds,
sprouts, and other vegetative structures is reduced in production when a redwood is stressed.
Possibly the process of rapid production of the cork and vascular cambium cells in and near
the injured area in 1982 may have partly been from a hormonal change.
Dormant buds sprout upon injury or fire on the trunk and from burls and lignotubers
forming sprout rings and reiterations. This tree has several sprouts growing from the soil
within two feet. One is 11 inches dbh in diameter that could be a 1980’s sprout. There is no
proof that this younger tree is not a seedling, but the three other sprouts only a few inches in
diameter within inches of the parent tree are possibly from underground lignotubers.
Phase II. In this phase, a close relationship existed between rainfall and growth
increment, with growth more than tripling from 1982 to 1986. However, growth was reduced
during the severe rain scarcity in 1989 and 1900, showing that rainfall was still a major
limiting factor in spite of possible leach field water availability. After 1982, injury to the cork
cambium in addition to increased rainfall (and possibly now also leach field water) resulted in
a highly variable growth pattern in the lower trunk (Figure 4.17). Possibly half of the roots are
in the leach field area to the east, and the other half are located on the west side of the tree on
a steep slope. In this phase, rainfall had a strong relationship with growth until 1988 when
growth continued at a high level in spite of the “drought” period of 1989-1990. As mentioned
above, the water table height in the leach filed rose from 11 feet from the surface when
installed in June,1982 to about 6.5 feet from the surface in June, 2005.
Phase III. The lack of correlation of the extremes of rainfall and growth rate from 1992
to present indicates a more stable growth similar to the first phase, but at over 4-5 times in the
growth rate. However, the overall trend of more rainfall and greater growth continued
throughout this phase when in until 2002 both growth and rainfall declined slightly. This
could have resulted in a higher rate of growth now that the study tree is now receiving the
greater amount of its water from the highly enriched leach field.
Light may no longer be a major limiting factor now that a canopy of a large oak was
removed from the sunny side of the redwood. However, erratic annual rainfall from 1993-
2000 may have contributed to a continually saturated leach field. In conversation with
arborists, it is common knowledge that having tree roots in a drain field system will make the
leach areas function better.
What is most important is that this study tree indicates that this redwood had rapid
dynamic growth patterns to respond to stress and increase of nutrients and light.

Figure 12. Annual rainfall from 1970-2004 compared with growth of annual rings of a
25-in. diameter (avg. dbh) redwood downed in January, 2005 in Mangels Ranch Area (see also Figure


The Guide is an expanded glossary with most of the definitions given in the text where the
topic is first mentioned. However, certain subjects need more definition, especially some of
the scientific and technical terms in the quotations.

Adventitious. When a structure develops in an unusual place. In this paper, reference is made
to Willis Jepson who in 1910 considered that when basal buds sprouted off “roots” around
stumps, they were adventitious. The redwood is the only conifer that sprouts from lignotubers
and burls at the base of the trunk

Allelopathic. Allelopathic plant species produce chemicals in the soil that negatively affect
other plants. Fires are important to many species in chaparral areas because poisonous
chemicals in the ground produced by other plants are destroyed by the heat of the fire, giving
advantage to competing species in vegetation recovery.

Alluvial. Alluvium is soil deposited by flowing water on flood or alluvial plains. Along the
rivers of northern California where there are large stands of redwood, flooding is important
for the redwood. If a deep layer of alluvium covers the trunk, dormant basal buds can create a
new layer of roots in the new alluvial soil.

Archegonia. Redwoods and other conifers (Gymnosperms), and mosses, ferns and some other
plants, do not have a pistil-ovary organ for seeds. The archegonia is an egg producing organ in
the bracts of the female redwood conelet. Fertilization takes place when pollen released into
the air from the male conelets enters the female cone.

Autecological. The ecological study of a single organism and its environment.

Bole. The trunk of a tree.

Chaparral. The chaparral is a foothill biome of small-leaved shrubs in a summer hot and dry
habitat, and moist winters. Chaparral areas have been heavily burned to make more grazing
and crop land since the Spaniards and Anglos came to California.

Contiguous. Touching or connecting without a break. This term is the principal characteristic
of cluster canopies. Contiguous crowns are also part of the description of logging
requirements for timber harvest permits.

Cotyledon. A special leaf in the seed that most often furnishes food for the seedling.

Crustose-lichen. The thallus of a certain type of lichen which is thin, crusty, and closely
attached to rock substrate. A lichen is a symbiotic combination of fungus and algae.

Debris Flow. There are several types of debris flows depending upon the size of the eroded
material. The debris flows in this area are of unconsolidated sand, mixed with light loam.

They flow quickly down the slope. In MRA in 2000, one slid a thousand feet to Mangels
Gulch creek bottom in a few minutes. This is opposed to slump jumbles which are slow
flowing and of deeper more consolidated loam, and may be stopped by a heavy root mass.

Dormant Basal Buds. Among conifers only the bigcone Douglas-fir and coast redwood have
these buds on the trunk. Many other species of trees have these buds on trunks that form
piggyback trees when downed, but need viable roots to keep the tree alive. Arroyo willow,
oak trees, California Bay and many of the understory shrubs sprout in this way. The buds in a
redwood tree remain dormant when the plant is healthy because of a growth hormone which
inhibits their growth until the tree is stressed, such as by fire.

Ecotone. The boundary between plant communities where there is a mixing of species. With
redwood clusters, there is no mixing or at least the ecotone boundary is very abrupt due to the
intense shading of the contiguous canopy.

Edaphic. A habitat condition that is influenced by physical and chemical soil structure and
topography rather than by climate. Edaphic characters are somewhat stable in a given area
from year to year. Climates can be highly unstable.

Floristic. The study of the number, distribution, and relationships of plants.

Foliose-lichen. A more advanced type of lichen in which the thallus is thick and leaflike.

Geomorphology. Study of the evolution and configuration of land forms - the origin of
earth’s topographic features.

Geotropism. The growth of an organism in response to earth’s gravity. A positive

geotropism is to grow downward as roots do. A negative geotropism is growing upward
against gravity as trees, or as reiterations on downed living piggyback nurse trees and on
higher broken redwood limbs.

Meristems. Are perpetually young tissues in a plant that form new cells until the plant dies.

Mesic. A mesophyllic plant is adapted to moderately moist habitats. The redwood is a prime
example of a mesic plant, but requires more atmospheric moisture than other trees, and may
also be referred to as a hydrophyllic plant.

Mosaic. In plant communities, this refers to a patchwork over an extended area of several
communities and vegetative types, sometimes without clear boundaries (ecotones) between
the plant communities. These areas have a high diversity of plants and animals, and are
characteristic of the Mangels Ranch Area.

Ontogenetic. The origin and development of an individual organism from embryo to adult.

Peeler. In harvesting lingo, a “peeler” is the forester who peels the bark off a cut trunk before
it is milled. Another “peeler” is a growth that has sprouted off the top edge of a stump that
will eventually peel off. These are dangerous growths near houses.

Primeval. Original or ancient - the earliest of age or ages. Any reference using primeval (and
pristine) is qualified in that there is no place on earth that has not been affected in some way
by human activities, now including global warming.

Reiteration. A tree-like growth from a dormant bud at the break of a large limb, or off the
dorsal surface of a downed living nurse tree called a piggyback tree.

Scrub. Straggly, stunted, sparse vegetation growing thickly together. The land covered by this
growth is called a scrub area. In this area, coyote brush is typical.

Shrub. A woody plant of low height with several stems arising from the base without a single
trunk. The blueblossom and coffeeberry are shrub species. However, when these species grow
in more xeric areas, they may assume a scrub structure.

Topography. Precise description of a place giving the relative positions of land forms and
structure; an accurate and detailed description of a place.

Transpiration. Release of water vapor through the pores (stomata) of a leaf.

Xeric. Dry and desert-like.



The references are identified as superscripts in the text and appear here mostly in
numerical sequence. One publication which contains many articles referred to in this paper is
given in full here to avoid repetitive listing of the source. It will be identified as
PROCEEDINGS for each reference of that publication:

LeBlanc, John. ed. 1996. PROCEEDINGS of the Conference on Coast Redwood Forest
Ecology & Management, June 18-20, 1996. Humboldt State University, Arcata,
California. 162 pp.
UCSC Sci. Lib: SD 397 R3 C65

Call numbers are also included for several natural history and redwood text books in
the Santa Cruz County public and UCSC libraries.
1. Bakker, Elna.1972. An Island Called California: an ecological introduction to its
natural communities. Berkeley and Los Angeles. Univ. Calif. Press. 361 pp. Pub. Lib:
Central. 574.9794 BAK; UCSC Sci. Lib: QH105C2B3
2. Zinke, Paul. 1988. The redwood Forest and Associated North Coast Forests, pp 679-
698. In Terrestrial Vegetation of California, expanded edition, eds. Michael G. Barbour
and Jack Major. Sacramento, California Native Plant Society.
3. Libby, W. J. 1996. Ecology and Management of Coast Redwood -Keynote Address.
4. Bowcutt, Fredrica. 1996. Park Management Enriched by Cultural Diversity: Case
Study From Sinkuyone Wilderness State park, Mendocino County, California.
5. Noss, Reed F. ed. 2000. The Redwood Forest - History, Ecology, and
Conservation of the Coast Redwoods. Island Press, Covelo, CA. 339 pp.
Pub. Lib: Central, Boulder Creek: 634.9758 RED; UCSC Sci Lib: SD397 R3
6. Journal of Forestry. 2000. 98(7), July (Ethics Issue): pp 8-18. UCSC: SD1 J64 98:7
7. Leopold, Aldo. 1949. A Sand County Almanac. Oxford Univ. Press, N. Y. 226 pp.
8. _______ 1953. Round River. Oxford Univ. Press, N Y. 173 pp.
9 . Munz, Philip A., and David D. Keck. 1959. A California Flora. Univ. Calif. Press.
Pub. Lib.: Aptos, Scotts Valley, Central, Live Oak R581.9 M92
10. Barbour, Michael G., and Jack Major. 1988. Terrestrial Vegetation of California.
Expanded edition. Sacramento, California Native Plant Society. Special Pub. 9;
UCSC Sci. Lib. QK149 T44
11. Johnston, Verna. 1994. California Forests and Woodlands - A Natural History.
Univ. Calif. Press. Berkeley. 222 pp. Pub. Lib: Central, Aptos, Boulder Creek,
Live Oak, Outreach Service. 577.3097 JOH

12. Schoenherr, Allan A. 1984. A Natural History of California - California Natural

History Guides # 56. Univ. Calif. Press. Pub. Lib: Aptos, Boulder Creek, Central,
Capitola, Central 508.9794 SCH
13. Weaver, John E, and Frederic E. Clements. 1938. Plant Ecology. McGraw-Hill.
14. Reid, Leslie. 1996. Time, Space, and Redwood Trees. PROCEEDINGS: 42-45.
15. Kittredge, Joseph. 1948. Forest Influences - The Effects of Woody Vegetation on
Climate, Water, and Soil. McGraw-Hill Inc.
16. Storie, Raymond, et. al. 1944. Soil Survey of the Santa Cruz Area, California
USDA, Soil Survey Division. (UCSC Sci. Lib: S599.C2 S8)
17. Bowman, Roy H. et. al. 1980. Soil Survey of Santa Cruz County, California. U.S.
Dept. of Agriculture, Soil Survey, in Cooperation with Calif. Agricultural
Experiment Station. (UCSC: Sci. Lib.)
18. Hickman, James C. ed. 1993. The Jepson Manual . University of California
Press. 1400 pp. Pub. Lib.: Central 581.9794 JEP
19. Lanner, Ronald. M. 1999. Conifers of California. Cachuma Press, Los Olivos,
California. Pub. Lib.: Aptos, Central, Scotts Valley - 585.0974 LAN
20. Hewes, Jeremy Joan. 1981. Redwoods - The World’s Largest Trees. Gallery
Books, N.Y. 191 pp. Pub. Lib: (oversize) Capitola, Felton, La Selva Beach 585.2
21. Viers, Stephen. 1996. Ecology of the Coast Redwood. PROCEEDINGS: 9-12.
22. Wilcox, Wayne. 1996. Coast Redwood as a Future Supplier of Wood Products.
23. Kuser, J. E. 1996. Redwood as an Exotic. PROCEEDINGS: 55-59
24. Evarts, John, and Marjorie Popper. 2001. Coast Redwood - A Natural and
Cultural History, Cachuma Press. Los Olivos, California. Pub. Lib.: (all) 585.5 COA
25. Sugihara, Neil G. 1996. The Dynamics of Treefall Gaps in Alluvial Flat Coast
Redwood Forests. PROCEEDINGS: 94-95.
26. Spreiter, Terry A, James F. Franke, and David L. Steensen. 1996. Disturbed Lands
Restoration: The Redwood Experience. PROCEEDINGS: 140-146.
27. Fox, Lawrence III. 1996. Current Status and Distribution of Coast Redwood.
28. Tuchman, E. K., et. al. 1996. The Northwest Forest Plan. Wash. D.C.: USDA Office
of Forestry and Economic Assistance.
29. Sawyer, John O., Dale A. Thornburgh, and James R. Griffin. Mixed Evergreen
Forest - Chapter 10. 1988. In Terrestrial Vegetation of California,expanded
edition, eds. Michael G. Barbour and Jack Major, pp. 359-381, Sacramento,
California Native Plant Society. UCSC SCI. LIB: SD 397 R3 C85
30. Allen, Gerald, et. al. 1996. Seventy-two Years of Growth on a Redwood Sample
Plot: The wonder plot revisited. PROCEEDINGS: 61-62.
31. Adams, Jeffrey et. al. 1996. Comparison Between Growth of Douglas-Fir and
Redwood Regeneration in Uniform Selection and Group Selection Silvicultural
Systems. PROCEEDINGS: 72-73.

32. Helms, James, and Christopher Hipkin. 1996. Growth of Coast Redwood Under
Alternative Silvicultural Systems. PROCEEDINGS: 74-77.
33. Piirto, Douglas et. al. 1996. Implementing Uneven-Aged Redwood Management at Cal.
Poly’s School Forest. PROCEEDINGS: 78-81.
34. Rodrigues, Kim. 1996. The History of Conflict over Managing Coast Redwoods.
35. Griffen, J. R., and W. B. Critchfield, 1972. The Distribution of Forest Trees in
California. Research Paper PSW-82, USDA Forest Service.
36. Zinke, Paul, et. al. 1996. Pattern and Processes in Forests of Sequoia sempervirens.
37. Becking, Rudolph. 1996. Seed Germinative Capacity and Seedling Survival of the
Coast Redwood. PROCEEDINGS: 69-71.
38. Fritz, E. and J. L. Averell. 1924. Discontinuous Growth Rings in California
Redwood. Jour. Forestry XXII: No. 6.
39. Esau, Katherine. 1953. Plant Anatomy. John Wiley & Sons.
40. Bingham, B. B. 1984. Decaying logs as a substrate for conifer in an upland old-
growth redwood forest. Master’s thesis, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA.
41. Dawson, Todd. 1996. The use of Fog Precipitation by Plants in Coastal Redwood
Forests. PROCEEDINGS : 90-93
42. Greenlee, Jason M. and Jean H. Langenheim. 1990. Historic Fire Regimes and
Their Relation to Vegetation Patterns in the Monterey Bay Region of California.
American Midland Naturalist. 124 (2): 239-253. UCSC Sci. Lib: QH 1 A35
43. Greenlee, J. M. 1983. Vegetation, Fire History, and Fire Potential. PHD
Dissertation, UCSC. UCSC Sci. Lib.
44. James, Susanne. 1984. Lignotubers and Burls - Their Structure, Function and
Ecological Significance in Mediterranean Ecosystems. The Botanical Review.
50(3) July-Sept.: 225-262. UCSC: Sci.Lib. QK 1 B335
45. Finney, Mark A. 1996. Development of Fire Scar Cavities on Old-growth Coast
Redwood. PROCEEDINGS: 96-98.
46. Sher, Stanley, and Gretchen Wilson. 1996. Tumorigenesis in Coast Redwood.
47. Orr, Robert T., and Dorothy B. Orr. 1968. Mushrooms - and Other Common Fungi
of the San Francisco Bay Region. Univ. Calif. Press. Calif. Nat. Hist. Guides # 8.
71 pp.
48. Libby, W. J., T.S. Anekonda, and J.E. Kuser. 1996. The Genetic Architecture of
Coast Redwood. PROCEEDINGS: 147-149.
49. Gause, G. W. 1966. Silvical Characteristics of Bigcone Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga
macrocarpa).USDA Forest Serv. Res. Paper PSW-39, 10 pp.

50. Del Tredici, Peter. 1998. Lignotubers in Sequoia sempervirens: Development

and Ecological Significance. Madrono 45(3): 255-260. UCSC Sci. Lib.: QK.1 M 183.
51 Jepson, Willis L. 1916. Regeneration in Manzanita. Madrono. 1. 1916-1929
52. _______ 1910. The Silva of California. Memoires of the Univ. of Calif. UCSC
Sci. Lib. Q111.C3 v.2
53 . Hinds, Norman E. 1943. Geomorphology -The Evolution of Landscape. Prentice
Hall. NY
54. Rasp, Richard A. 1999 (Fourth Printing). Redwood:The Story Behind the Scenery.
KC Publications, Las Vegas. 54 pp.
55. Borrass, Thembi. 1996. Fall and Rise of the Dyerville Giant. PROCEEDINGS: page 157.
56. Eifert, Larry. 2002 (6th printing). The Distinctive Qualities of Redwoods. Estuary
Press. Port Townsend, WA. 48 pp.
57. Misuraca, Rick. 1992. Reed’s Mill. The Mill Valley Historical Review, Spring 1992.
58. Del Tredici, Peter. 1999. Redwood Burls: Immortality Underground. Arnoldia,
29(3): 14-22.
59. Schoenherr, Allan A. 2001. California Redwood: What is the state tree? Fremontia
29 (1), pp34-35, Jan.
60. Becking, Rudolf W. 1982. Pocket Flora of the Redwood Forest. Island Press. Covelo CA.
Pub. Lib.: Boulder Creek, La Selva Beach, Capitola, Central, Scotts Valley.
61. Brewer, William. 1966. Up and Down California in 1860-1864. Berkeley, University
of Calif. Press, 3rd edition, 1966. 772 pp. Pub. Lib: Aptos, Central. 917.94BRE:
UCSC McH: F864. B75
62. Lyons, Kathleen, and Mary Beth Cooney-Lazaneo. 1988. Plants of he Coast Redwood
Region. 197 pp. Los Altos, Calif. Looking Press. Pub Lib.: Aptos, Boulder Creek, Felton, La
Selva Beach, Central 581.97947 L98
63. Pavilk, Bruce M., Pamela C. Muick, Sharon G. Johnson, and Marjorie Popper.
1991. Oaks of California. Cachuma Press, Los Olivos, and the California Oak
Foundation. 184 pp.
64. Preston, Richard. 2005. Climbing the Redwoods. The New Yorker, Feb. 14 and 21,



As a scientist, I feel an obligation to present an accurate Guide, and to point out errors
being read by an interpreter who unknowingly may pass on the error. For the older books to
not contain a newer fact is not an error. The only four errors were misstatements of facts that
were known at the time. These errors appear in the reviews. I pointed out omissions of certain
basic subjects in case the reader would be interested in those subjects. I also noted there are
varying interpretations of the cause or formation of certain redwood structures and growth
I have listed in small print the library call numbers the publications that are available
in the Santa Cruz Public Library system and UCSC libraries.
The arrangement of the annotated listing is not in rank of relative importance. Instead,
I have grouped the authors in several categories: by publisher, natural history, and species

(The Literature Cited numbers of authors cited in this text are given in small superscript)

• The Cachuma Press and Other Glossy-paper Library Series

1. Coast Redwood - A Natural and Cultural History, edited by John Evarts and
Marjorie Popper24, published in 2001, was written by Michael Barbour, Sandy Lydon, Mark
Borchert, Marjorie Popper, Valerie Witworth, and John Evarts. This is an oversize glossy-
paper book that has two basic categories: (1) Species distribution, life history, and ecology of
the redwood in the first four chapters on pages 1-80; and (2), the history of harvesting,
preservation, conservation, and management practices on pages 81-205.
The first section on the life history and adaptations includes 134 color photo-graphs
showing most of the redwood growth adaptations, habitat, ecosystems, and wildlife of a
redwood forest. The second section also has dramatic photographs - 105 in black-and white
and 45 color photographs - of the history of redwood harvesting and protection. The
outstanding watercolor drawings of redwood cones, seeds, bracts and needles by E. O.
Murman is included. (Additional Murman watercolors are presented in Ronald Lanner’s book
on conifers, see below in this section).
The extensive bibliography covers 10 pages of the book. A listing with addresses of 22
“Resources,” covering research, action organizations, funding, and educational organizations
is given. Four Appendices include comparison of the three redwood species, average rainfall
and temperature of the redwood region, common and scientific names of plants, and timber
harvest figures for selected counties.

The authors did not discuss lignotubers, but did discuss redwood burls that essentially
are the same, except lignotubers include food storage and underground functions. Sprout rings
and “fairy rings” are discussed.
Height and width of the tallest and widest redwoods were not given. Record redwood
height is occasionally changing among several trees in National Redwoods Park and in
Humboldt Redwoods State Park. All county public libraries. 585.5 COA
(Other information on historic events in this book is included below
in the review of the J.J. Hewes book, Redwoods, the worlds’ tallest trees.
These two publications compliment each other on several subjects, and
together present a thorough history of redwood harvesting history.)

2. Ronald M. Lanner, 1999 Conifers of California19 is a beautiful glossy-paper oversize

description of the 52 conifers native to California. Conifers include 50 species in Family
Pinaceae, and the two redwoods, Coast redwood and Giant Sequoia, in Family Taxodiaceae.
Included are the two yews in the Family Taxaceae that are not conifers. A distribution map
accompanies each species.
Most species have from two to four color photographic ecoscapes of the habitat of that
species, showing the topography, growth form of the trees, and occasionally a bird or flower
characteristic to that habitat.
What makes this scientific identification book unique among publications is the
inclusion of outstanding art work for all but five of the conifer species by Eugene O. Murman
who was born in 1874. His works are full page, extremely detailed, high quality watercolors
showing needles, cones, seeds, bracts, and branchlets. Murman’s finely nuanced drawings are
worth more than several pages of written description. Illustrations include five high quality
contemporary drawings by Susan Bazell.
The Appendices include a table on the comparison of needles and cones in the hard
and soft pines, a discussion of conifer hybrids, keys to the Genera based on cones and on
leaves, and an alphabetical list of conifers growing naturally within California. The annotated
bibliography gives 84 listings. Libraries: Aptos, Central, Scotts Valley. 585.0974 LAN

3. Oaks of California was written by Bruce M. Pavlik, Pamela C. Muick, Sharon G.

Johnson, and Marjorie Popper.63 The 185 page book was published in 1991 by Cachuma
Press and the California Oak Foundation. This glossy identification and life history book is
important because the redwood areas near Aptos are dominated by the Shreve oak, tanoak,
and Coast Live oak. These species are involved in competitive interactions in oak woodland,
mixed evergreen, and redwood communities. Oaks of California is very detailed with color
photos of the 18 California oak species and their habitats. The text and photographs includes
many aspects including diversity, ecoscapes, wildlife of California oaks, along with
information of oaks and human past, and preserving oaks for future generations. A key to the
tree oaks is given. The appendices include maps of the topography and lists of common names
of plants, insects, vertebrate species, and endangered species associated with oaks. A glossary
of 70 terms and oak

structures and forms is included.

(At the time of printing of the 1991 edition, the Shreve oak, Quercus parvula var
shrevei was not fully accepted by oak taxonomists. At this time, it has been accepted by
Hickman in Jepson’s Manual, by the California Native Plant Society, by Dean Taylor of the
Jepson Herbarium in his recent checklist of plants in the Aptos Creek watershed, and by the
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. If the present acceptance by the authors and organizations
above is upheld, then the range of the Shreve oak would extend along the maritime coast from
San Mateo County to near Santa Barbara. The Shreve oak would replace the Interior Live Oak
for this area of California.)

4. Redwoods - The World’s Tallest Trees by Jeremy Joan Hewes20 was copyrighted in
1981 by Bison Books Inc., and published by Gallery Books in 1984, 192 pages. This book,
along with the Coast Redwood edited by Evarts and Popper above, depicts almost everything
concerning the redwood, from fossil development to the need for protection of old-growth
forests today. These books compliment each other, both books tell the same story but each
with different historic black-and-white photos and drawings. Only one photograph appeared
in both books out of 224 total historic photos between the books (119 in Hewes and 105 in
Evarts and Popper). This photograph was of the Excelsior Redwood Company’s spur railroad
with logs loaded for hauling in Eureka. All the other photos may include the same subjects but
are different. For instance, Hewes shows a team of 14 oxen towing 14 12-20 foot logs on a
skid road in Mendocino County. Evarts and Popper have team of 10 oxen towing 10 similar
sized logs in Santa Cruz County. Hewes has a picture of many people including John Muir
and President Teddy Roosevelt, surrounding a huge Giant Sequoia in Mariposa County.
Evarts and Popper have a similar picture in front of a redwood in Del Norte County, with
President Herbert Hoover in the line of people holding hands around the tree.
They both have photographs of Native American residents at the initiation of timber
harvesting, showing conical plank-and-shake houses and traditional clothing. Evarts and
Popper show photographs of Coast Miwok, Tolowa, and Yurok tribes for the coastal Indians.
Hewes shows similar photos and drawings of Yurok and Pomo for the coast redwood tribes,
and Yosemite and Shoshone types for the Giant Sequoia area.
Drawings and color photos are of the plants and tree and plant structures are highly
instructive. In Chapter 3, she also includes Giant Sequoia life history and growth form
primarily through photographs and drawings.
If the reader is interested in scenes of old-style forest destruction and attitudes toward
nature, Hewes Redwoods is a splendid source. Large pictures strongly depict three types of
action that brought about the harvesting controls aimed at today. To me the most revealing of
contemptuous human attitudes to nature is on page 121.

A 9 x 12 inch black-and-white picture shows two loggers about 16 feet above the ground
sitting on the front of a bulldozer that has been driven so that the front half of the equipment
hangs in the air when resting on top of cut 6-7 feet diameter redwood logs. The loggers on the
front edge of the bulldozer, are looking down at the photographer. One interpretation of this
photograph is to depict the modern way of harvesting that the bulldozer brought to the forests
that should be honored with a picture which plainly shows what this piece of modern
equipment can do. The other imagery could be a representation of self-destructive human
attitudes toward nature. For at least a hundred thousand years humans have had to survive in a
nature they could not control, and knew little about what was going to happen next concerning
food, water, and protection. Human technology, and social and cultural behavior, enabled
humans to temporarily increase their carrying capacity - until they became overpopulated
again. This picture shows strongly not only human control over nature, but a stronger imagery
that we can “conquer” nature.
Another example of this cultural attitude in Redwoods, is the 12 x 18 inch photograph
on pages 70-71 that depicts the felling of the Mark Twain Giant Sequoia in 1891 in Kings
Canyon National Park. The tree is falling half way to the ground that has been cleared for its
arrival for exhibition! The caption says:

“Sadly, the proud loggers downed what may have been the most perfect Big
Tree of them all.”

A third enlightening 9 x 12 photograph on page 126 shows the bleak result of

redwood clearcutting in the old-days where no tree species remained standing. Travelers
through redwood country who brought home with them this desolate image inspired the
beginnings of the Sempervirens Fund, Save-the-Redwoods League, Trust for Public Land, and
stimulated other forest protection action.
In college I was taught the Life Zone nomenclature for the different bands of specific
plants, mostly trees, when changing altitudes in the Sierra Nevada’s. Today, vegetative
classification is of plant communities containing certain dominant species in different
geographic areas (see Terrestrial Vegetation of California below.) For those not familiar with
the Life Zone concept, J. J. Hewes presents a color figure on page 32 of the four Life Zones of
California. The redwood and Giant Sequoia are in the Transition Life Zone. Under today’s
system, the redwood is in the Pacific Northwest Floristic Province, in the Redwood Forest
community, and the Giant Sequoia is in the Sierra Nevada Montane Forest plant community
of the Sierran Floristic Province.
In the figure on page 53 of typical tree species on the slopes by altitude of the Sierra
Nevada mountains, the tree figure labeled Coast Live Oak should read Interior Live Oak.
Coast Live oaks do not grow in the Sierras. On page 13, “hartwood” should read heartwood.
In a table on page 20, the 35 feet diameter coast redwood figure should be in the Giant
Sequoia column. Pub. Lib.: (oversize) Capitola, Felton. 585.2 HEW

• University of California Press Series - Here are four that include redwoods:

1. Up and Down California by William H. Brewer61 is a fascinating 575

page record of letters and notes by a team of geologists under the State Geologist of

California, Josiah Dwight Whitney. This book contains an outstanding natural history and
topographic description of California in the late 1860’s by William Brewer, a geologist and
botanist. The book was first printed in 1930 by the Yale University Press, went out of print,
then was published by the University of California Press in 1966.
Brewer was the head of the field team in 1860 to 1864 that climbed many mountains
throughout California, many for the first time. The geologists in the seven team crew named
some mountains they climbed - Mount’s Whitney, Brewer, Gardiner, Silliman, and Clarence
King, all of which are in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Brewer mentions a few
plant species, including two of most interest to him, the Giant Sequoia and coast redwood.
Giant Sequoia information appears on 12 pages, and the redwood is mentioned on 10 pages.
Of most interest to Brewer were the diameters of redwoods. Near Santa Cruz, he reports most
of the trees had 10-12 ft. diameters, the largest between 19 and 20 feet. He did not state
whether the diameters were at dbh, so these data cannot be used as official. He did not give
the exact location of the widest tree. The index in Brewer’s book is detailed, and for those
who have traveled around the state, it is exciting to read how locations you have visited were
used and their condition in the 1860’s.
Frequent interactions with Native Americans are instructive, especially the Indians’
monitoring of their survey as the team moved through Owens Valley with “Indian smoke
signals by day, and fires on the ridges at night.” Brewer also mentions an important
behavior of the Indians protecting trees from fire near the junction of the middle and south
forks of the San Joaquin River. Brewer, page 540:

“Once we came on a camp fire still burning, but the Indians

were out of sight. In this valley hundreds of pine trees have
the earth dug around them to protect them from fire, for pine
seed or nuts form an important article of food with the
Indians. One species has very large cones, with large seeds ...
hundreds of bushels of seeds are gathered for food.”

The exact location of these most likely Gray Pines is not given. Native Americans
have been known to use fire to clear land for many purposes, but this is a unique method of
Indians to protect a food supply of a tree from fire. Lanner 19, p70 for Gray Pine, points out
that the Indians: ...” were wise to harvest the large nuts of this pine. The kernels are 25%
protein and 49% fat, and 95% of the fats are the polyunsaturated oleic and linoleic
acids.” Pub.Lib: Aptos, Central. 917.94 BRE; UCSC F864.B75

2. Allan A. Schoenherr12 in 1992 published A Natural History of California. He

needed to have 767 pages to relate all the plant communities and descriptions of most
common species in the State. To accomplish this task in a one-year sabbatical leave given by
Fullerton College is astounding. He emphasizes the necessity for describing the ecological
parameters of the geology, topography, soil type, and slope configuration for any plant species
and its associated plant species

Begins with descriptions of the Natural Regions of California, then moves onto Basic Ecology
and Basic Geology.
Ten natural regions are described, with lengthy descriptions of the highly diverse
Sierra Nevada, Cismontane Southern California, and California Deserts regions. The redwood
discussions on pages 283-287 in the Coastal Ranges region are primarily on physical limiting
factors, however, the discussion offers limited redwood life history. The discussion includes
listing of the most common associated plants, its dependency of moist maritime air, the
redwood’s resistance to decay, and its distribution determined by endemic and climatic
conditions - wind, flooding of alluvial flats, salt spray from ocean winds, and dry blowdowns.
Libraries: Central. 508-794 SCH

3. Verna R. Johnston11 published California Forests and Woodlands in 1994. Since she
limited herself to forests and woodlands, her 222 pages were adequate to present an ecological
approach to species description. The 60 color photo-graphs of flowers, seeds, trees,
salamanders, birds, mammals, and ecoscapes of forests are on glossy-paper. Johnston gives
redwood forests first attention. Her listing of maximum redwood height was 368+ feet was the
same, and a diameter of 15 feet (a foot less) than most other authors listed. Reed Noss5 in
2000 printed a table of redwood heights and widths in which some of these measurements
were updated.
A near complete review of redwood life history was presented in the pleasant
language of an interpretive trail brochure. It is a pleasure to enjoy emotional contemplative
feelings in a book through description of the sounds and behavior of plant the associated
animals and birds in an ecosystem. The following is the caption of a detail-ed drawing of a
group of redwoods with associated plants and birds:

Redwood trees rise arrow-straight above the Winter Wrens that

flit among the Redwood Sorrel and Western Sword Fern of the
forest floor. Chestnut-backed Chickadees search tree leaves for
insects. Salmonberry forms a shrub layer.

Her above description holds true for a typical redwood understory for northern
California. Salmonberry is not present in the Aptos Creek watershed. Her presentation of birds
in a redwood forest is not just listings the birds, but invites the contemplation of bird sounds:

The shaded Redwood Forests house relatively few birds. An

enormous quiet often settles among the trees, interrupted only
occasionally by the croak of a Common Raven (Corvus corax), the
tap of a woodpecker, the scold of a Winter
Wren, the high, thin lisps of Golden-crowned Kinglets, (Regulus
satrapa), the harsh calls of Steller’s Jays (Cyanocitta

A behavior of one of the most ubiquitous understory plant in redwood forests, the
Redwood Sorrel, is described:

Carpets of Redwood Sorrel spread heart-shaped leaflets

everywhere over the spongy brown earth, leaflets so well

adapted to the changing light and shade of the Redwood Forest

that they droop dramatically in full sun, wilting from
excessive water loss (transpiration).

An error appears on page 16 - that the “redwood has a taproot”. Was this a typo, substituting
an “a” for “no”? One possible reason for this mistake is the imagery of a drawing on opposite
page 17 of the added growths to the root system after each deposition of flood soil around a
redwood. After each of four floods, the root system sprouted new feeder and structural roots
in the new soil, creating what appears to be a deep taproot growing from the top, which it is
not.. Libraries: Central, Aptos, Boulder Creek, Live Oak, Outreach Service. 577.3097 JOH

4. An important University of California Press book is the plant identifier’s new rendition
of The Jepson Manual, Edited by James C. Hickman18, published in 1993. I will not
elaborate on this 1400 page tome, but will suggest to some people who have not had a course
in botany that it is not impossible to learn how to identify many plants. A very detailed
glossary of terms is given, and fine line drawings of diagnostic parts of almost every plant are
given. These drawings are an improvement over the original 1923 Willis Jepson’s Manual of
Flowering Plants of California.

• Reed. F. Noss5 in 2000 published his 340 page book The Redwood Forest - History, and
Conservation of the Coast Redwoods, Island Press, Covelo, California. He was supported
by Save-the-Redwoods League to undertake this task. A team of 35 researchers has brought
together a comprehensive data-based detail of the redwood and many of its associated
Unlike many of the other publications reviewed here, color photographs on glossy-
paper are not presented, but black-and-white drawings of tree forms are included. Historical
logging scenes and methodology are not presented visually. Instead, many Figures and Tables
have been prepared to supply analyzed data to scientifically describe the redwood. They have
submitted 32 Figures, 22 Tables, seven Appendices, and nine Boxes (highlighted) for specific
A list of plant species is necessary for plant community descriptions, but in this book
on pages 60-63, the reader might wonder why Teresa Sholar’s “Preliminary Checklist of 176
plant species in Van Damme State Park” in northern California is necessary. I found it quite
important, because comparisons of associated species in the central and northern parts of the
state are important to describe the adaptations of redwoods to variances of habitat. I used Dr.
Dean Taylor’s checklist of 533 plants in the Aptos Creek drainage (nearly all of the drainage
is in the FNMSP) to compare the species that appear commonly in two areas over 300 miles
apart, and how many of the species are in a “southern” more xeric park are not listed in a
“northern” mesic park.
Briefly, 88 species (one half of the total) of plants present in Van Damme State Park
are also present in the FNMSP. This demonstrates that redwood habitat has a degree of
continuity throughout. The Van Damme State Park area thus has another 88 plant species that
are not present in FNMSP. The same 88 plant species represent only 17 percent of the plants
in the Aptos Creek Drainage, with 445 more species than in Van Damme State Park.

The difference in the diversity of the plant communities in the drier part of the coast is
obvious, with far more “Mediterranean” plants in the south. However, I do not know many of
the plants collected in Van Damme State Park were included in their “preliminary checklist”
listing. The differences disclose much about the adaptations of the redwood to compete and
survive within in the more xeric area where the redwood is surrounded by many more plant
associations and severed climate conditions than are present in the northern woods.
About the four and a half pages (310 species and sub-species) of Fungi Associated
with Redwood in Appendix 3.2. What is useful about this total fungi listing is to relate the
high numbers of non-visible organisms in an ecosystem that includes hundreds of species of
fungi, lichens, plants, invertebrates (especially insects), that only the experts are aware of. A
redwood ecosystem is extremely diverse, even though plants, birds, and mammals, may be
limited compared to neighboring ecosystems.
Reed Noss includes a detailed discussion of the lignotuber, which some authors do not
mention. These authors may have decided to not mention lignotubers for public library
publications because of its complicated physiological growth. A discussion of the closely
related redwood burl may be all that is necessary for the public, but interpretive specialists
should be aware of the specific functions of lignotubers. To demonstrate how closely related
these growths are, recent information on redwood lignotubers is presented in a 1999 article in
Arnoldia by Dr. Peter Del Tredici titled “Redwood Burls: Immortality Underground.”58
Reed Noss’s discussion of the lignotuber reveals that the structure may be important in
revealing the formation of “fairy rings” (Noss5 pp 110,114). I collected information in the
Mangels Ranch Area and found that a massive lignotuber may not be the cause in all cases.
Further research is needed to look further into cluster and ”fairy ring” formation, including the
Mill Valley Jepson circle (see Guide text pages 57-61 and Appendix I), which is not a slump
jumble cluster. Genetic evidence may solve the problem. The discussion on the lignotuber is a
good example of presenting difficult and controversial scientific information that stimulates
important research that may prove valuable for the health and productivity of the redwood as
global warming increases.
Of most importance was the tree size information in Noss’s Table 4.1,“Diameter and
Breast Height (dbh) Height, and Trunk Wood Volume of the Tallest and Largest
Known Redwood Trees.” Most of the redwood publications either used the commonly cited
National Geographic Tree for height (it is now in fourth place), and a not-cited 16 foot
diameter tree for maximum width. His Table 4.1 lists 15 trees over 20 feet in diameter - the
widest being 25.8 feet dbh.
The tallest redwood changes because each of four or five giant trees, almost at the
same height, grow at varying rates. The presentation of data in his Table 4.1 does not give the
tallest tree at this time. The tallest tree was not mentioned in the table, it is now the
“Stratosphere Giant” in Humboldt Redwood State Park (see my text page 15).

Part of the problem of giving the exact location by park personnel and authors of the
tallest redwoods is to not broadcast exactly where they are, to protect them. Some “antisocial
activists” cut down a giant redwood near the Highway through Richardson’s Grove apparently
to anguish environmental activists and protectionists. Exceptional care is being taken by
Federal and State personnel to protect these largest trees.
Noss’s book is strong in relating ways of harvesting that can be developed to preserve
the sustainability of a redwood forest, and assure the continuity of redwood ecosystems with
their associated plants and animals. In Chapter 9, Lessons From the Redwoods, he summarizes
16 basic functions of the redwoods that we scientifically know, following by three basic
sustainable models needed for ecological management (his page 267), one of them includes:
“Arguably all remaining old growth should be protected.” Pub.Lib.: Central, Boulder
Creek: 634.9758 RED; UCSC SD 397 R3 R455

• Michael G. Barbour and Jack Major10 edited another massive data-base works for
plant communities that defined and described the Floristic Provinces and their Plant
Communities for California in The Terrestrial Vegetation of California, new Expanded
Edition, 1988. This project was organized by the California Native Plant Society, and was
first published in 1977 in Sacramento as the Society’s Publication 9, with 1030 pages.
The contributors included 37 volunteers most knowledgeable of particular plant
communities and areas of the state. All plant communities were completed except for the
riparian areas that are very diverse throughout the state, requiring much effort.
The plants in FNMSP are the California Floristic Province, which includes the Mixed
Evergreen and Oak Woodland plant communities, and the Pacific Northwest Floristic
Province, which includes the Redwood Forest and Coastal Prairie and Northern Coastal Scrub
plant communities.
A Literature Cited section is given for each article, but there are no subject indexes.
The Mixed Evergreen Forest, pages 359-381, was written by John D. Sawyer, James R.
Griffin, and Dale Thornburgh; the Oak Woodland section was
written by James R. Griffin, pages 383-415; the Redwood Forest and Associated North
Coast Forests, pages 678 to 698, was written by Paul J. Zinke; and the Coastal Prairie and
Northern Coastal Scrub, pages 733 -760 was written by Michael Barbour, Dean W. Taylor,
Harold F. Heady, Theodore C. Foin, Mary M. Hektner, and W. James Barry. UCSC Sci.Lib.
QK 149 T44

• The major work of most importance in reviewing recent redwood life history information
was the Proceedings of the Conference on Coast Redwood Forest Ecology &
Management, June 18-20, 1996. at Humboldt State
University, Arcata, California, 162 pp. The 104 authors and co-authors
presented 46 papers and 12 Poster Abstracts that were edited by John LeBlanc. To determine
how valuable this document would be to you, note the 19 papers cited from this document in
the text. UCSC Sci. Lib., SD 397 R3 C65

• A flowering plant identification book with color photos is being used by local docents is in
the county libraries: Kathleen Lyons and Mary Beth Cooney-Lazaneo62 in 1988 published
their 197 page color photo flower identification book Plants of the Coast Redwood Region
by Looking Press, Los Altos, Calif. It includes color photographs for each flowering species
with identification drawings. Most of the flowering redwood habitat plants in the FNMSP are
included, except for a few that live in dryer habitat than in the north.
Common plant names change over the years. Most botanists now choose the common
names given in the revised Jepson’s Manual or on the California Native Plant Society’s flower
posters. There are a few flowering plants in this book that continue to have several common
names. For instance, Lyons and Cooney-Lazaneo and the California Native Plant Society give
the name “Wake Robin” for Trillium ovatum. In Jepson’s revised manual it is called White or
Western Trillium.
Lyons and Cooney-Lazaneo used the formerly common name “Fetid Adders Tongue”
for Ophioglossum californicum, whereas in Jepson’s revised manual it is named the
“California Adder’s Tongue. The California Native Plant Society names it “Slink Pod”.
The common names given this exceptional field identification book are well known
and usable, even though a few common names may be slightly dated. Pub. Lib.: Aptos,
Boulder Creek, Felton, La Selva Beach, Central. 581.97947 L98.

• Rudolph Becking60 in 1982 published his 237 page Pocket Flora of the Redwood Forest
by Island Press, Covelo, CA. This has been a favorite among redwood forest admirers.
Included are fine ink drawings of the diagnostic flowers, leaves and other parts of each of the
212 more common plants throughout the red-wood’s range. An additional 30 color
photographs of major species are included, and keys to the Families and of some keys to the
Genera of species are given. Pub. Lib.: Central, Boulder Creek, La Selva Beach, Capitola,
Scotts Valley. 582 B38

• Identification of flowering plants and bushes are available on 22 x 34 in. wall posters
published by the California Native Plant Society, 909 12th St., Suite 116, Sacramento CA
95814. Four posters with color drawings of twigs with leaves and flowers show nearly all the
flowering plants of the redwood and associated plant communities. These are: Wildflowers of
the Redwood Forest with 58 species; Wildflowers of the Coast with 34 species; California
Native Plants - Spring Wildflowers with 55 species, and Shrubs of the Coast Ranges with
34 species.

• Richard A. Rasp54, Chief Park Naturalist/Interpreter, wrote Redwood, the

Story Behind the Scenery. This 55 page oversize 9 x 12 in. glossy-paper stapled magazine
format was published in 1989 by KC Publications, Inc. Las Vegas. The book was edited by
Mary Van Camp -- the copy I have was of the 4th printing, 1999.

Color photographs depict not only the redwood in its different shapes and forms, but gives
well chosen examples of redwood habitat and topography of the foggy Northern
California Coastline. Photographs of several birds, mammals, and flowers are given
considerable space. It has a photograph of the Giant Sequoia for comparison. Pub. Lib. :
central, 585.2 RAS

• CSP Park Ranger Chris Sanguino gave me a copy of a 5.5 x 8.5 inch informative and
attractive handbook with accurate redwood life history. The 48 page handbook written by
artist Larry Eifert56 is titled The Distinctive Qualities of Redwoods, published by Estuary
Press, Port Townsend, WA. The 6th printing was in 2000. Every page except two has fine
detailed drawings (53 total) of plants, flowers, birds, amphibians, mammals, and the many
growth forms of the redwood. The cover drawing is in water-color. Drawings of the Giant
Sequoia and Dawn Redwood are included. The descriptions are similar to the prose of Verna
Johnston. For instance, in Eifert’s discussion of the barn owl in a redwood grove:

Both creatures flew further into the grove. With them, their cries receded
into the forest leaving me alone with my thoughts.

When numbers are joined by a dash as 32-36, the discussion on that topic appears on each
page in the sequence. Underlined page numbers give extended information, including the
glossary. When the page number is in bold, the subject is in a Figure or Table. The superscript
after each author’s name is the reference number in the Literature Cited section
Aborigines, 41,43,61 Biodiversity, 2
Adams, Jeffrey , 29,103 Biome, 7
Adventitious buds, 58,59,99 Bird Discussion and Listing, 82,83, 86
Advocate Tree, 5,29 Blackberry, California, Rubus ursinus ,
Agave, Desert, Agave deserti, 37 11,63,65, 77
Age of redwood (and other trees), Blowdowns, (see treefalls)
16,28,33 Blueblossom, Ceanothus thyrsiflorus,
Alder, red, Alnus rubra,9 70,76-77,84
Albino, redwood, 49 Board Feet, 1,29
Allelopathic, 48,99 Bobcat, 79,85
Allen, Gerald, et al30, 29,103 Bole, (see trunk), 24,99
Alluvial forest, 12,35,38,99 Botanists, 7,78
Amphibians in MRA, 81,85 Bowcut, Fredrica4, 3,102
Annual rings, 24,33-34,40 Bowman, Roy H.17,12,13,103
Apical, 34 Bracken, Pteridium aquilinum, 11,19,78
Aptos Creek and Road, 5,6,9,11,13,29, Branches, 17,28
30,47,77 Branchlets, 16,17, 21,32,63,65,74
Archegonia, 33,99 Brewer, William H., 105,109-110
Arnold Arboretum, (VI),90 Bridges, Janet, 78
Australian Fireweed, 26,88 Broom, French, Genista
Autecological, 2,45,99 monspessulana, 26,84,88
B Burl, {ix},12,18,29,55-57,113
Bakker, Elna1, 1,7, 36,103 Buttress, 18,24,29
Banana slug, 39 C
Barbour, Michael and J. Major10, California Department of Forestry
7,14,48,102,106,114 (CDF), 27,61,69,90,92
Bark, 16,18,20,39,46,48,72 California Native Plant Society,
Bay, California, Umbellularia 7,114,115
californica, 9,10,26,37,49,72 California State Parks, (CSP), (viii),(x)
Becking, Rudolph , 32,33,37,51,104- Cambium, 20,21,24,40.48
105,115 Canopy, 9,15,21,25-26,28,39,40,51,62,
Beidleman, Richard, 59,91,92 73
Ben Lomond loam, 12 Chain fern, 23
Big Basin State Park, 40,41,46,47 Chamise, Adenostoma fasciculatum, 48
Bingham, B. B. , 35,104 Chaparral, 44-45,47,48,99

Checklist of Plants for Mangels Ranch Damping off, 38

Area, 87 Dawson, Todd, 37-38,104
Chetco River Drainage, Oregon, 31 Dead standing tree, 22,35
Chimney tree, 21-22,40,46 Debris flow, 99
Chipmunk, Merriam, Eutamiais Deer, mule, Odocoileus hemionus, 79,85
merriami, 80,85 Dehydration, 31
Chlorophyll, 49 Del Tredici, Peter50, 56-58,60,90,91,
Christmas tree, 21,53 92,104,105
Clearcut, 1,25,30,61 Demming, Mark, 89
Climate, 1,9,10,31,40,41,69 Diameter of a tree (dbh), 15,18,28,29,
Climax, 8-9,12,25,29,40 34,70,96
Circles, 57-61,69,89-90 Diversity of species, 78
Circular pattern, 52,69 Dogwood, creek, Cornus serica, 73,87
Clone, 50,51,52 Dormant basal buds, 26,31,50,54-57,100
Clusters, (viii},6,11,53,57-62,63,64, Douglas-fir, Pseudotsuga menzeisii ,
65-68,69 9,10,11,12,23,26,29,45,47,54,67,96
Coastal Prairie, 6,7,11,13,45 Downed tree, 25,36
Coffeeberry, California, Rhamnus Drought, 2,9,10,47
californica, 19,23,36,63,65, Duff, 22,33,38,39,51,69
73,74-75,77 Dyerville Giant, 15
Competition between plants, 8,25,31,71 E
Conelets, 17,32,34 Earthquake (1989), 73
Conifer, 16,48,55,56,107 Ecological, 3,47,56
Contiguous, 89,90,99 Ecological education, 4,45
Corralitos, 53,61 Ecological trends, 2-3
Cotyledonary node, 56,99 Ecologists, 1-3,4,7,8,40,46,70
Coyote, 79,85 Ecoscape, 4,107
Coyote brush, Baccharis pilularis, 11, Ecosystem, 2-3,7-9,40,113
70,78,87 Ecotone, 1,77,100
Creep erosion, 62 Edaphic, 10,40,100
Creosote bush, Larrea tridentata, 16, Eifert, Larry56, 105,116
52,72,73 Elderberry, blue, Sambucus mexicana,
Crown fires, 34,47 77,87
Crown gall, 49 Ensatina, Ensatina eschscholtzii, 81,85
Crown needles, 17,32 Environment, 3,45,56
Crustose-Lichen, 9,99 Ethics Code and choices, 2,3
Culls, 1,30,59 Ethical, 2
Cultural values, 1,3 Epiphytes, 49
Currant, pink-flowering, Ribes Esau, Katherine39, 34,104
sanguineum, 77,87 Esthetic, 47
Cuttings, 12,51 Eucalyptus, 14,56,57,
D Evapotranspiration, 71

Evarts, John, and Marjorie Popper24, Forget-me-not, Myosotis latifolia, 26,88

14,15,25,26,32,36,39,46,49,50, Founders Grove, 15
53,54,57,103,106,108 Fox, Lawrence III27, 34,103
Even-aged forest, 30 Fritz, E. and J. Everall38, 33
Exotic plants (see Introduced plants) Frog: Pacific treefrog, Hyla regilla, 81,
F 85
Fairy Ring, 50,51,53,57-60,61,69,72,89- ------- red-legged, Rana aurora, 81,85
92,107 Fungi, 33,51,69
Federation Tree,15 G
Feeder roots, 48 Galleta Grass, Hilaria rigida, 37
Feral pig (wallowing), Sus scrofa, 80,85 Gause, G. W.49, 55-56,104
Fertilization, 33 Genetic traits and material, 16,51,56,71
Finny, Mark A.45, 46,49,104 Geology, 9,25,110
Fir, Bigcone Douglas-, Pseudotsuga Geomorphology, 69,100
macrocarpa, 55 George’s Picnic Area and Flat, 5,49,61
Fire, 8,9,12,25,39,40,46,47,49,50,53, Geotropism (positive and negative), 55,
55,71 56,100
----- Cavity, 18,21 Germination, 31,33
---- Crown fires, 47 Giant Sequoia, Sequoiadendron
---- Mean Fire Interval (MFI), (ix), giganteum, 15,16,31,34,108,109,
40-45 110
Lighting-Volcanic Regime, 40-41 Ginko, 56
Aboriginal Fire Regime, 40-41,43,47 Global warming, 4,78
Spanish-Mexican Fire Regime, 40,41, Goosepen, 18,46,59
43-45 Gopher, pocket, 80
Anglo Fire Regime, 43,44-45 Grass, 43
Recent Fire Regime, 40,45 Grazing, 44
Fire Scars, 34,39,46,47,71 Greenlee, Jason, Phd. thesis, 40
Fire suppression, 47 Greenlee, Jason M. and J. Langenheim45,
Fireweed, Australian, Erechtites minima, {ix},40-43,45,46,104,
26 Griffen, J. R35, 31,104
First generation, 28 Grizzly bear, 41
Floods, 8,9,12,33 Growth regulators, 34,50
Floristic Province, 100,114 Growth ring (see annual rings)
Fog, 10-11 Grove, 25
Fog drip (fog precipitation), 16,37,38,70 H
Foliose-Lichen, 9,100 Happy Valley, (vi),6,9-12,13,28,37,38,
Food storage, 20,57 47,61,70,73,76-77,79,89-90
Forest of Nisene Marks State Park Harvesting, 1-3,12,26,28,30
(FNMSP), (ix), 5, Hawk Point Ridge, 6,10-11,13,28,29,30,
6,7,12,13,25,28,29,31,46, 47, 51, 47,70

Hazelnut, California, Corylus cornuta, 57,102,111-112

43,87 Joshua Tree, Yucca brevifolia, 37
Heartrot fungi, 49 Journal of Forestry6, 3,102
Heartwood, 24,29,48-49 K
Helms, James 32, 29,104 Kiosk, 5
Hemlock, Western, Tsuga heterophylla, Kittredge, Joseph15, 10,69,89,103
35,36 Kunze, Allan, 71
Hewes, Jeremy Joan20, 16,25,31,33, Kuser, J. E23, 16,103
34,108,109 L
Hexaploid, 16 Land ethic, 3-4
Hickman, James C.18, 12,14,26,103,112 Landscape, 3
Hinds, Norman E.53, 62,105 Land scar, 62,63,69,71,77,
Hope, David, 69,89 Landslide, 8,9,12,25,32,38,62,69,77
Hound’s tongue, Cynoglossum grande, Lanner, Ronald M.19, 14,15,16,32,55,
87 103,107,110
Hugo Loam, 12 LeBlanc, John, 14,102,114
Humidity, 9,41,70 Leopold, Aldo7,8, 3-4,102
Humboldt Redwoods State Park, (vi), Libby, William J.3, 2,14,31,52-53,102,
15,52-53,107 104
Humboldt State University, 2,3,15, Life Zones, 109
57,102 Light, 7,28,37,38,97,98
Humus, 22,33,38,52,69,73 Lightning fires, 40-41, 42,47
Hydrological studies, 38 Lignotuber, (ix},12,19,53,55-56,57,60,
Hydrosere, 9 61,90,92,107,113
I Litter, 19,22,38,39,70
Inner bark, (see phloem) Living Nurse Tree, 19,35,54
Insect attack, 33 Log, redwood, 35,72
Insects in MRA, 84 Logging, 28,53
Interpretive sites, 4 Loma Prieta Logging Period, 30-31
Introduced plants, 3,25-26,88 London, Jack, 60
Ivy, Cape, Delaria odorata, 26,88 Lower Park area, 12,30,47,49
---- English, Hedera helix, 25,26,88 Lydon, Sandy, 47,106
J Lyons, Kathleen,, 105,115
Jackson State Demonstration Forest, 89 M
James, Susanne44, 47-48,56-57,104 Madrone, Pacific, Arbutus menziesii,
Jan Caral and Agnes Van Eck Mem. 6,9,29,72,87
Grove, 25 Mammals in MRA, 78-81,85
Jepson, Willis51,52, (vi},14,57,55-60,105 Management of Forests, 2
Jepson Circle, (vi},57-60,89-92 Mangels Gulch Creek, 6,13,30
Jepson Herbarium, (vi),78 Mangels Ranch Area (MRA),
John Reed Mill Site, Mill Valley, 59 (v),(viii), (ix),4,5,6,7,12,22,28,
Johnston, Verna11, 7,14,31,34,36,53,55,

30,36,37,42,46,47,49,52,54, Mycorrhizae, 33
59,60, 69,70, 76,78,85-88 N
Mangels-Van Eck Redwood, 6,13,29, National Geographic Tree, 15
30,54 Natural history library, (x),106
Manifest Destiny, 44 Nature trail, (viii), 4
Manzanita, Arctostaphylos andersonii, Needle bundle, 17
48 Needle desiccation, 17,31
Maple, big-leaf, Acer macrophyllum, Needlegrass, Purple, Nassella pulchra,
9,10,73,74 (viii),6,11
Marcel’s Forest, 29 Nematodes, 39
Mark Twain Giant Sequoia, 109 Newt, California, Taricha torosa, 81,85
Marten, Humboldt, Martes americana Northern Coastal Scrub, (x),6,7,10,11,
humboldtenis, 45 13, 72
Mean Fire Interval (MFI), (see fire) Noss, Reed F.5, (vi),3,12,14,15,16,27,
Mediterranean climate, 10,26,83-84,113 28,31,33,35-37,50,54,57,58, 61,
Medocino County, 3 89,90,102,112-113
Mendocino Tree, 15 Nurse Plant and Nurse Tree, 19,34-37,54
Meristem, 34 Nursery Log, (x),23,35-36,65,74
Mertz, Karl, (v) Nutrients, 7
Mesic, 39,100 O
Micro-environment, 10,69-70 Oaks:
Miller, Steven, 76 Coast live oak, Quercus agrifolia,
Mill Valley, (vi),59,91,94,113 9,11,23,30,77,107,109
Mineral soil, (vi),12,26, 62, 71 Interior live oak, Quercus
Misurace, Rick57, 91,105 wislezenii, 108-109
Mixed Evergreen Forest, 6,43,107 Shreve, Quercus parvula var
Mohave Desert, 72 shrevei, (vi),(viii), 6,9-11, 22,23,
Monkeyflower, Sticky, Mimulus 29,30,37,47,63,73,74,77,107,108
aurantiacus, 11,78 Oak woodland, 6,11,13,43,46
Monte Toyon Conference Grounds, 5,6, Octopus tree, 36
69,76,78 Old-growth forest, (ix),1,25,26,28-29,61,
Monte Toyon Ridge, 6,10-12,13,47 72,89,108
Monoecious, 32 Old-growth tree, 1,15,27-28,30,59,89-
Mosaic of plant communities, 10,11,100 90,114
Moss, 9,23 Old Mill Park, Mill Valley, 59
Mother Tree, 52-53,58,60,61,69,90,92 Olympic National Park, 54
Muir, John, 108 Omega Redwood, 18
Munz, Philip A. and D. Keck9, 7,31,102 Ontogenetic, 56,57,100
Murman, E.O., 106-107 Orr, Robert T., and Dorothy Orr47,
Murrelet, marbled, Brachyramphus 51,104
marmoratus, 45 Oso Berry, 78,87
Mushroom, 51 Owl, pygmy, Glaucidium gnoma, 82-83,

86 glyptostroboides, 31
------, spotted, Strix occidentalis, 45 - forests, 6,25-26
P - structures, 14,16,17-24
Pacific Northwest Floristic Province, 7 - superlative tree, 14,15,16
Parent tree, 59 - does not die of old age, 16
Pathogenic fungi, 32,33,38,69 - maximum diameter of, 15
Patrick’s Point State Park, 36 Redwood-Mixed Evergreen Community,
Pavlik, Bruce M. et. al., 105,107-108 10,29
Peeler (see stump peeler) Redwood National Park, (vi),15
Peripheral trees of a Cluster, 11,52,53, Redwood Piggyback Nurse Tree, (see
69,71,72,76,77 Piggyback Tree)
Phenolics, 33,49 Reed, Agnes, (v)
Phloem, 20,48 Reed, Emmitt, 73
Philosophical terms, 3 Reed’s (John) Mill site in Mill Valley,
Phototropism, 19 59
Pigeon, band-tailed, Columba fasciata, Reid, Leslie14, 4,10,12,70,103
83,86 Reinhabitor, 3
Piggyback Tree, 19 Reiteration, 18,19,34,54,55,60,101
Pine, bristlecone, Pinus longaeva, 16 Reptiles in MRA, 81,85
-------- , gray, Pinus sabiniana, 110 Residual forests, 29-31
Pioneer species, 26 Residual old-growth, 18,
Plantation, 1,34 Residual second-growth Forest, 30
Plant Communities, 1,7-10 Richardson Grove, 25
Plant Discussion and Listing, 83-84,87 Rodrigues, Kim, 30,34,104
Poison oak, Toxicodendron Roosevelt, Teddy, 108
diversilobum, 11,78 Root hairs, 33,39
Pollen cones (conelets), 17,32-33 Roots, 19,35,36,39,48,54,55,56
------- grains, 33 Root-pull pit, 12,19,26,38,53,63,65,71
------- shedding, 32 Root radical, 33
Polypodium, 23,87 Rootwad, 12,19,26,38,55,65
Pourroy Area of Lower Park, 5,12,29,77 S
Prairie burning, 43 Sagebrush, California, Artemisia
Primeval, 101 californica ,11
Purple Needlegrass, Nassella pulchra , Salamander, Calif. slender,
(viii),6 Batrachoseps attenuatus, 81,85
R Sanguino, Chris ( CSP Ranger), 116
Rabbit, brush, 80,85 Santa Cruz Mountains, 44
Rainfall, 10,95-97,98 Sapling, 21,34,51,65,71,74-75,76
Rasp, Richard54, 15,105,115-116 Sapwood, 20,24,49
Redwood - Save-the-Redwoods League, 112
- life history, (x) Sawyer, John O., et. al.29, 29,103
- Dawn, Metasequoia

Scale, 17 punctatus, 81,85

Scher, Stanley (and G. Wilson)46, 49 ------- sharp-tailed, Contia tenuis, 81,85
Schoenherr, Allan A.12, 7,8,15,16,37,52, Snow tolerance, 9
72,103,105,110-111 Society for Ecological Restoration, 3
Scrub, 7,8,11, 40,47,63,65,71,74,76,82, Soil types and conditions, 4,9,12,13,33,
101 35,36
Sea salts (aerosol), 31 Soquel State Demonstration Forest, (vi)
Second generation, 30,58 Sorrel, Redwood, Oxalis oregona, 78,
Second-growth, 1,30-31,60,61,72 111
Seed germination, 31,32,48 Spaniards, 43,53
Seed production, 17,32,33,39, Spiketop, 21
Seedlings, 2,12,16,26,33,35,38,39,51-52, Spohrer, Chris, (v)
55,62,71,76 Spreiter, Terry A.,, 26,103
Seedling roots, 39 Sprouts, 16,18,37,50,51,55,57,71,73,74
Self pruning, 15,18,25,72,73 Sprout ring, (x),18,46-49,57
Sempervirens Fund, 109 Spruce, Sitka, 35,36
Seral stages, 8,9,28,30 Stand, 25
Sere, 8-9 Stand cluster, 11,62
Shade tolerance, 25,39,78 Steel bridge, 5
Shading, 1,25,26,37 Stem, 73
Sher, Stanley, and Gretchen Wilson46, Stockton, David, (vi),15
49,104 Storie, Raymond, et. al.16, 12,103
Shrub, 9,26,52,101 Stratosphere Giant, 15
Sillett, Steve, 15,49 Stump peeler, 21,54,59
Silviculture, 25,61 Successional forest stages, 9,28
Size classification, 34 Sugihara, Neil G.25, 26,35,36,38
Slash, logging, 44 Sunlight (too little, and too much)‚ 39
Slope dynamics, 10 Sustainability, 3
Slope percentages in clusters, 63,65,67 Sycamore, Western, Platanus racemosa,
Slump Jumble dynamics, 12,22,38,52, 9
62,63,65,71,90,92 T
Slump jumble cluster, 11,52,62,63,65, Tallest Tree, 15,113,114
67,71,74,76-77 Tannins, 33,49
Snag, 22,35 Tanoak, Lithocarpus densiflorus, 6,9,25-
Snakes, 26,30,50,61,77
------- W. terrestrial garter, Taylor, Dean, (vi),78,84,112,
Thamnophis elegans, 81,85 Taproot, 48,52,58,112
------- gopher, Pituophis catenifer, Terrace trail, 30
73,81,85 Terrestrial vegetation, 1,7,109
-------- rattlesnake, 81 (not observed in Third generation, 30,59,60,61
area) Third-growth, 30-31
------- ring-necked, Diadophis Thrasher, California, Toxostoma

curvirostre, 82,86 Vole, California, Microtus californicus,

Timber Harvest Permit (THP), (viii), 80,85
27,69 W
Timber workers, 3,27 Weasel, longtail, 80,85
Topography, 7,9-11,25,41,61 Weaver, John, and F. E. Clemens13,
Transpiration, 17,39,101 8,9,103
Treefall, 25,35,54,63,65,67 Wilcox, Wayne22, 16,103
Treefall gap, 25,26, 38,71,76,77 Wilderness experience, (vii},1
Trunk, 18,54 Widlife events and species listings, 78-
Trust for Public Land, (v),(viii) 88
Tuchman, E. K.28, 28,103 Willow, arroyo, Salix lasiolepis, 9,37
Tumorigenesis, 49 Windthrow (fallen tree), 25
Twisted Grove, 5,77 WOLF school, 78
U Woodpecker Granary, 18
U.C. Riverside, 56 Woodpecker, pileated, Dryocopus
Undercutting erosion, 25 pileatus, 83, 86
Understory, 19,25,46,52,62,63,65, 76,77 Woodrat, 18,39,65
Uneven-aged Forest, 25,30,52,89 X
USDA Northwest Forest Plan, 28 Xeric, 7,101
V Xerosere, 9
Van Eck, Agnes, 73 Xylem, 20,40,48
Vegetative Types and Plant Z
Communities, 9,11 Zinke, Paul2,36, 2,31,33,36,102,104
Viers, Stephen21, 16,31,39,47,50,51,103