From the Maryland Big Tree Program:
During the latter half of 2018, members of the Harford County Forestry Board re-measured fifteen trees. Trees are required to be re-measured every 10 years, and all these trees were last measured in 2008. Nine of these trees are Harford County Champions. All these trees can be found on the Maryland Big Tree Program website www.mdbigtrees.com.
This huge white oak in the Darlington area is the Harford County Champion and is the #3 white oak in Maryland. It scored 396 points, up from 379 points in 2008. The State Champion in Cecil County is at 406 points and a tree in Calvert County is at 399 points. This tree is privately owned. The late Wye Oak was at 506 points when it blew over in 2002.
This tree is a Chinese chestnut, also located in the Darlington area. It is also privately owned. As the name suggests, these trees are not native to the United States. They were introduced to replace the American chestnut which was killed off by the chestnut blight in the early part of the 1900s.
This is a very handsome example. It is the Harford County Champion and the #3 chestnut in Maryland.
It scored at 236 points.
This southern magnolia is located on the same private property as the Chinese chestnut and like the chestnut has been planted a number of years ago. Southern magnolias are native to the Southeast United States, from Virginia south. They are widely planted in Maryland as landscaping trees due to their large glossy leaves and fragrant white flowers. As the climate warms, we would expect to find larger and larger examples. This tree scored at 214 points, with the Maryland State Champion in Somerset County at 304 points. This is the Harford County Champion.
This is the Harford County Champion black locust. This species is very common in Maryland. Black locust is a small to mid-sized tree, rarely scoring over 300 points. It grows rapidly when young with underground roots that can sprout new trees some distance from the parent tree. Black locust need full sun to thrive; they are typically found along fence rows, like this tree. The interior wood is yellow and makes excellent firewood.
The vine growing up the tree is wisteria. It will eventually damage the tree but the owner likes the fragrance of the flowers and does not want it removed.
This tree scored 219 points with the State Champion at
This handsome tree is a Norway spruce growing on private property in Bel Air. It is the new Harford County Champion as the old champion, also the former State Champion, has died. It scored 259 points with the State Champion at 295 points. This is the 3rd biggest Norway spruce in Maryland.
Norway spruce are obviously not native to Maryland but do very well here and are widely planted as landscape trees. They are low maintenance and relatively long lived. They usually do not need to be pruned to maintain their form.
This is a blue spruce, a cousin to the Norway spruce.
It is the Harford County Champion and the #5 blue spruce on the MD list. It is privately owned in Bel Air.
It has extensive English ivy on the trunk; otherwise it is one of the better looking examples in Maryland. It scored 148 points.
Blue spruce, also known as Colorado spruce, is native to the Rocky Mountains, where it can grow to 100’ or more. Cultivated trees on the east coast generally grow to 70’ in height. There are many cultivars available on the market, so it is impossible to tell if this tree is a pure native or if it is one of the many hybrids.
The Harford Forestry Board volunteers also measured 24 new trees, either nominated by their owners, or discovered while on site. In one case a neighbor nominated a tree and while visiting the property and talking with the owner, they discovered a new county co-champion black cherry.
Owners can nominate their potential big trees by visiting the web site, www.mdbigtrees.com, and downloading and completing the two forms. Visitors to the site can also see photos of the big trees in Harford County and make plans to visit those on public land.