Oakland Tree Awarded GC County Champion Title

Jul 26, 2021

An eastern white pine tree located in Oakland, MD was recently measured and awarded the title of the Garrett County Champion in the Maryland Big Tree Program.

The Big Tree Program originated in Maryland in 1925, went national in 1940, and is run by American Forests, www.americanforests.org. Each state has a State Coordinator who collects data, measures trees, and biannually submits certain trees to American Forests as potential National Champions.

To evaluate the relative size of a tree, the girth (circumference) in inches and the height and crown spread in feet are added together to arrive at a number of points for each tree. This number is then used for comparison of tree sizes in each species. This system of measuring gives the trunk much better weight by giving the girth in inches. The formula is:  Total Points = Circumference (inches) + Height (feet) + 25% of the Average Crown Spread (feet). The tree was measured by DNR Regional Coordinator Becky Wilson. Using the formula, this eastern white pine has a total score of 254 points.

The Garrett County Champion tree is located in the NW corner of Green and 8th Street and is accessible to the public. The tree has an old trunk wound most likely from lightning and a large vertical opening with decay present in the trunk. The crown has been reduced over the years by utility pruning; however, despite these factors the tree is an impressive one.