Benefiting from the cool ocean air that flows into Malibu Canyon, the afternoon shadows of Goat Buttes, their north-facing aspect, and the sustaining waters of Malibu Creek and Century Lake, the 100-year-old coast redwoods in Malibu Creek State Park appear to be thriving.
Coast redwoods are not endemic to Southern California. According to Los Padres Forestwatch, the southernmost stand of naturally-occurring coast redwoods is on the coast about 200 miles north of Malibu Creek State Park in an area of Los Padres National Forest designated the Southern Redwood Botanical Area.
Numerous redwoods have been planted in Southern California, and not all of them are doing well. A reprint of the 2004 article “What’s up with the redwoods?” by James Downer, originally available as a resource link on the Urban Forest Ecosystems Institute website, discusses a dramatic decline in coast redwoods planted in Ventura County and describes some of the problems facing this wonderful tree.
Perhaps the Malibu Creek State Park redwoods have a better chance of surviving, and naturally occurring or not, will be enjoyed by Park visitors for centuries to come.
From this morning’s trail run in Malibu Creek State Park.