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common name: Dawn Redwood
growth rate: fast
growth habit: conical
leaf colour: green
fruit colour: brown
main season: Summer
full sun, part shade
moist soil, wet/waterlogged soil, clay soil
preferred soil pH: any
minimum temp: -20°C
USDA zone: 6 to 8
Magnificent deciduous conifer The feathery bright green leaves, arranged in two opposite ranks on the shoots, turn tawny pink and golden-brown in autumn. Vigorous, of conical habit with ascending branches and shaggy, cinnamon brown bark. On mature specimens the lower trunk often forms buttress like ridges. Female cones are pendulous on long stalks, globose or cylindrical, dark brown and mature first year.
Grows best in moist, well drained, humus rich soil in full sun, but is reasonably tolerant of conditions once established. Thrives successfully in damp, even waterlogged, soil near water. Quick growing, especially when young, but slower after reaching about 10 metres particularly in dry locations.
From seed in autumn, hardwood cuttings in winter or semi-ripe cuttings in summer.
Superb specimen tree and very effective planted in groves, especially in moist locations.
This an ancient species known from prehistoric fossils. It was only discovered in 1941 growing in South East China, by Mr. T Kan, and introduced into cultivation in 1947.
PHS Gold Medal