California’s Alder Creek Grove is the largest privately-owned area of giant sequoia trees. That includes the Stagg Tree — a 3,000-year-old, 25-story behemoth that is the fifth largest tree in the world — as well as 482 others with diameters of at least six feet, according to the Los Angeles Times. Instead of keeping the grove private, and subject to the whims of a potential buyer, a conservation group wants to buy it themselves.
The group in question is Save the Redwoods League. This month, the San Francisco nonprofit reached an agreement with the current owners to buy the 530-acre property for $15.25 million, plus $400K in transaction costs. But according to the Times, the group only has until December 31 to come up with the money. And right now, they’re about $8 million short.
That’s where you come in. Save the Redwoods is asking the public to donate money to help in the group’s conservation efforts. That’s a big ask, but in essence, these donations aren’t simply being used to protect the trees (and other plants and wildlife), they’re also being used to eventually open up the private land to the public.
“The league plans to keep the property for five to 10 years, thin non-sequoias that it says have grown too dense in the absence of wildfire, and then sell the land, presumably at a discount, to the U.S. Forest Service for inclusion in the neighboring national monument,” writes the Times.
That would be the Giant Sequoia National Monument. Currently, the public is allowed to visit the Stagg Tree, the crown jewel of the grove, but as Sam Hodder, President and CEO of Save the Redwoods, writes on the organization’s website, the entire Alder Creek Grove is “a crown jewel of giant sequoia forests.”
According to Hodder, current and future generations should be able to not only visit, but benefit from everything the precious ecosystem has to offer. And it looks like that vision will come true, if they can come up with $8 million by Christmas.
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