nature's secrets

Watch: How giant sequoias, earth’s largest and longest-living trees, need fire to survive

Fire, the destroyer, can also be a creator.


The blackened landscape seen after forest fires, whether caused by natural or man-made factors, always gives the impression of large-scale devastation.

However, in some cases, forest fires are beneficial to the ecosystem.

For instance, forest fires have helped giant sequoias – earth’s largest and longest-living trees – to survive.

Native to the western slopes of California’s Sierra Nevada mountains, giant sequoias – which are one of the three species of coniferous trees known as redwoods – can stand up to 325-feet tall and live for more than 3,000 years.

The video above by PBS follows how fire provides conditions for this tree’s seeds to germinate.

The camera takes the viewer from the floor of the forest to the tree tops from where one gets an aerial view of the forest. Even if you haven’t seen the tree in real life, the video will give you an idea of its imposing size.

Because of its height, it is difficult for sunlight to reach the ground in groves of giant sequoias. However, these trees require strong sunlight to grow. It is here that fire plays a vital role – the heat allows the tree’s cones to split open and release its seeds. At the same time, the fire loosens the soil, clears it of leaves, and allows the seeds to fall on bare soil, which it requires to germinate.

The fire-resistant bark of these trees helps them survive forest fires as compared to other tree species. As the charred parts of giant sequoias are enveloped by newer layers, the rings in the trunk slowly record the history of each fire.

Scientists have been fascinated with the stories that groves of giant sequoias have to tell. But like other flora and fauna on earth, even these species, which go back some 8,000 years, are endangered in the face of rapid climate change.

The videos below are of forest ecologists Wendy Baxter and Anthony Ambrose from University of California Berkeley’s Dawson Research Lab who study how drought is affecting the ancient species.

Wendy Baxter explains the magic of the trees as she climbs to the top to collect the samples.
Anthony Ambrose on the stress the Giant Sequoias undergo in the face of drought.
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The pioneering technologies that will govern the future of television

Home entertainment systems are set to get even more immersive.

Immersive experience is the core idea that ties together the next generation of cinematic technologies. Cutting edge technologies are now getting integrated into today’s home entertainment systems and challenging the limits of cinematic immersion previously achievable in a home setting. Here’s what you should know about the next generation of TVs that will grace your home.

OLED Technology – the new visual innovation in TVs

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Dolby Atmos – the sound system for an immersive experience

A home entertainment system equipped with a great acoustic system can really augment your viewing experience far beyond what you’re used to. An exciting new development in acoustics is the Dolby Atmos technology, which can direct sound in 3D space. With dialogue, music and background score moving all around and even above you, you’ll feel like you’re inside the action! The clarity and depth of Dolby Atmos lends a sense of richness to even the quieter scenes.

The complete package

OLED technology provides an additional aesthetic benefit. As the backlight is done away with completely, the TV gets even more sleek, so you can immerse yourself even more completely in an intense scene.

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To know more about what makes LG OLED TV the “King Of TV”, click here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of LG and not by the Scroll editorial team.