Every tree tells a story. Some have an unusual shape and size, some have witnessed historic events, some were our favorite trees from childhood. This is what makes the National Big Tree Program special. It’s a collection of stories from individuals who took the time to stop, measure and nominate their tree in hopes that it would be recognized as a national champion. It’s not just about the size of the tree, but about the people who find and care for them.

Tree Tales showcases these individuals: the state coordinators who spend countless hours managing their Big Tree Program and the volunteers, field reps and big-tree hunters who travel across the state and around the country to track down and verify the biggest trees. And, let’s not forget about the trees themselves and their individual tales. Tree Tales is all about adding another dimension to the trees we already know are exceptional.

Check out our monthly features on fascinating trees and the people from around the country who discover and care for them.

Hunt for Trees Alongside Big Tree Enthusiasts
Virginia big tree hunters, Byron Carmean and Gary Williamson, were following up on a lead they received about a big tree in North Carolina. While in the Tar Heel state, they stumbled upon a new state champion Kentucky coffeetree and national co-champion umbrella magnolia at the High Hampton Inn.
Meet the State Coordinators
I also love to cook — bake mostly — so all the outdoor activities help me justify my love affair with baked goods! I love to garden; one of my favorite activities is working in my yard. I’m not a big veggie gardener — I leave that for my husband — but I love designing and planting landscapes.”
Discover the Trees
From tiny titans and mega-trees to everything in between, every national champion has a story in how it was discovered, crowned and dethroned. American Forests’ coordinator of the Big Tree Program shares her highlights of the National Big Tree Program for 2012.