The California redwood was designated the official State Tree of California by the State Legislature in 1937. Once common throughout the Northern Hemisphere, redwoods are found only on the Pacific Coast. The redwoods were around during the time of the dinosaurs and they are considered the forerunner of all modern trees. Many groves and stands of the towering trees are preserved in state and national parks and forests. There are actually two species of California redwood: the coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) and the giant sequoia (Sequoia gigantea). The coast redwoods are the tallest trees in the world - one reaching over 360 feet tall grows in the Humboldt Redwoods. One giant sequoia, the General Sherman Tree in Sequoia National Park, is 272 feet high and more than 36 feet in diameter and is widely considered to be the world's largest tree overall.