America's Champion Trees Include At Least One In the National Park System

This chestnut oak at Battery Kemble Park in Washington, D.C., has been deemed a national champion by American Forests.

There are trees, big trees, and really big trees that are recognized as national champions by American Forests. And one of those champion trees, a chestnut oak, can be found in a small Civil War setting in Washington, D.C., preserved by the National Park Service.

Battery Kemble Park, a small expanse of green that's part of Rock Creek Park, was manned by Union soldiers to defend the U.S. capital. There, growing amid this highly urbanized area, rises the 105-foot-tall chestnut oak with a 23-foot circumference!

After losing its sole champion in American Forests' spring 2012 register, the District of Columbia regained a spot in the National Register with this chestnut oak.

Sponsored by The Davey Tree Expert Company, the National Register of Big Trees accepts nominations for national champions year-round, and American Forests releases an updated version of the register twice a year. The National Register of Big Trees records the largest trees of each species in the United States based on height, circumference and average crown spread.

Since 1940, American Forests National Big Tree Program has promoted the importance of planting and caring for trees and forests in helping to sustain healthy ecosystems and life on Earth. The program has campaigned to locate, protect and save the biggest specimens of every native and naturalized tree species in the United States.

You can learn more about the National Big Tree Program and its resources, including the new Tree Protection Toolkit, and view the fall 2013 National Register of Big Trees at this website.