Metasequoia glyptostroboides 'Bizzarger' / Bizzarger Dawn redwood

Metasequoia glyptostroboides 'Bizzarger' is an irregularly growing, upright, semi-dwarf selection of Dawn redwood with random branching that frequently grows in a contorted fashion. Foliage is also irregular and twisted; and as a deciduous conifer, needles change color in fall and are soon shed. Bark is very dark brown and spongy in texture.

Ultimate size and growth rate is difficult to define. In some years, terminal branches may extend up to 6 inches (15 cm) in some direction and in other years, that branch may die to be replaced by another. The plant can therefore be described as "self pruning." After 10 years of growth, the original specimen in Ohio was measured approximately 5 feet (1.5 m) tall and half as wide. Grafted specimens will probably grow a little faster in some parts of the country due to the vigor of the rootstock.

This cultivar originated as a seedling selected in the early 2000s by Bill Barger of Wadsworth, Ohio. His sharp eye spotted this truly bizarre little tree in a flat of grafting understock. The cultivar name is a combination of "bizarre" and "Barger." Because of difficulties in getting quality cuttings, this conifer is extremely rare but worth seeking out especially for those who like strange an unusual garden plants.

Metasequoia glyptostroboides 'Bizzarger' — the original plant in Bill Barger's private garden in Ohio.
Photo by Bill Barger
Metasequoia glyptostroboides 'Bizzarger' — a closeup of foliage detail.
Photo by Bill Barger