Common name: Western redcedar
Thuja plicata, is a native tree which can grow to over 70 m/230 ft in height and is the cornerstone of West Coast First Nations’ culture. Important for healing and spiritual purposes, it is also used to make canoes, totem poles, masks, bentwood boxes, hats and house posts. It is not a true cedar but is a member of the Cypress Family (Cupressaceae). It is the BC provincial tree.
It prefers wetlands and higher elevations, so it is less likely to burn.
Our most prominent specimen is at the southeast corner of the Great Lawn just across from the BC Habitat Garden. Members of the BC Big Tree Committee guesstimate it is about 120 years old. Its 'candelabra' shape is probably due to the loss of a leader, forcing new leaders to take its place.
Self-Guided Tour, April 2022 & May 2023 (#15)
Leaf photo by Walter Siegmund, via Wikimedia Commons
Other photos by Lyn Anderson