Happily for tree lovers everywhere, a group of arborists have successfully taken stumps from ancient redwood trees and cloned them to create healthy and happy saplings. With some of the stumps of these redwoods dating back 3,000 years, history has come alive once again for their offspring.
As Yale Environment 360 reported, some of the redwood tree stumps that were cloned measured a whopping 35 feet in diameter back when they were chopped to the ground during the 19th and early 20th centuries, and the tiny saplings that have sprung from these enormous trees have just been planted in San Francisco at the Presidio National Park to begin life anew.
The team behind regenerating and cloning redwood trees from their former stumps is the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive, who are a nonprofit organization that are hoping to mitigate climate change today by bringing redwood forests to life once again.
Coastal redwood trees are known to grow extremely fast at 10 feet each year, and these trees are believed to greatly reduce the growth of carbon dioxide with each redwood extracting 250 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while they live. That is a great deal more than other trees, which normally reduce one ton of carbon dioxide over the course of their lives.
Arborist David Milarch, who is the co-founder of the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive, recently released a statement explaining that these cloned redwood trees that have been planted in San Francisco will help to fight climate change in a major way.
“We’re excited to set the standard for environmental recovery. These trees have the capacity to fight climate change and revitalize forests and our ecology in a way we haven’t seen before.”
A team of arborists has successfully cloned and grown saplings from the stumps of some of the world’s oldest and largest coast redwoods, some of which measured 35 feet in diameter when they were cut down. https://t.co/MYSNk0E4oR pic.twitter.com/0NmCTKYoyI— Yale Environment 360 (@YaleE360) December 27, 2018
When visiting northern California and Oregon, a huge amount of redwood tree stumps are still scattered over the landscape as reminders of the ancient forests that once resided there, and while the vast amount of arborists were certain that these stumps were completely dead, Milarch and his son, Jake, had other thoughts, and amazingly discovered that some of the stumps still contained living tissue from deep within their ancient roots.
The Milarchs extracted DNA from five different giant coast redwoods and discovered that they could use this DNA to create saplings, which is a lengthy process that normally takes around two-and-a-half years to complete. Besides San Francisco, the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive has also managed to successfully plant some of the cloned redwood saplings in both Cornwall, England and Oregon, and are in the process of arranging more to be planted in nine countries.
“These saplings have extraordinary potential to purify our air, water, and soil for generations to come. We hope the San Francisco ‘super grove,’ which has the capability to become an eternal forest, is allowed to grow unmolested by manmade or natural disasters and thus propagate forever,” Milarch noted of the cloned redwood trees.