Family - Cupressaceae
Genus - Metasequoia
Species - glyptostroboides
Common names - dawn redwood, water fir, water larch
Height - 70-100 ft
Girth - Up to 100-120 cm
Canopy spread - 25 ft
Fast growing, grows late in season, with height
increases of more than 24" per year when young
Can live up to 600 years
In urban areas it usually lives up to 60 years
Dawn redwood is used in a lot of different urban settings because of its aesthetic appeal. It is commonly used as a street tree, landscape tree, in rain gardens, specimen, lawn tree to provide shade, on golf courses, campuses. Its uniform, conical shape can be useful where regularity is needed in landscape designs or for screening. As a deciduous conifer, dawn redwood gets really good fall color before shedding its needles for the winter. A favored ornamental, its fall color can range from red to orange, depending on sun exposure. The bark and needles are also a reason dawn redwoods are used in the urban setting. Dawn redwood does need adequate space to grow because it is a larger tree, so it is limited in where it can be planted in the urban area.
Dawn redwood wood is not commonly used. It has little value due to the wood being so brittle and the trees producing large buttresses. Some products can be made from the wood such as benches. However, it is mainly used for aesthetic purposes in the landscape.
Dawn redwood has some wildlife uses such as winter cover for birds, deer and small mammals. When it is younger, deer will browse on the foliage. The seeds from the cones are not a source of food for wildlife.