Program looks to recognize Nebraska's biggest, oldest trees

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LINCOLN, Neb. Nebraska is full of beautiful trees, and the Nebraska Forest Service works to promote the importance of forests in our state.

Right now, they are accepting nominations for the state's largest tree species. It's all part of Nebraska's Champion Tree Program.

“The program basically recognizes large trees,” said John Duplissis with the Nebraska Forest Service. “Some states call it the ‘big tree program,’ but it’s not so much about the size. It’s more about the history and what they have survived.”

The Nebraska Register of Heritage Trees is unique because it is a collection of trees that have served as living witnesses in the state of Nebraska.

The register includes tales, photographs and a journey into Nebraska’s past through the special accounts of these famous storytellers.

“While we think in terms of the size of the tree, it’s really kind of honoring the monarchs of the forest—the ones that have lived and survived a long time.”

Nominating a distinctive tree for the register gives every community across the state an excellent opportunity to celebrate our Nebraska heritage. Anyone can submit a nomination.

“We look for one tree from each species to nominate and recognize as the largest. It could be any tree someone’s front yard or a forest.”

There are five pieces the Nebraska Forest Service needs from each nomination. When submitting, you will need to provide the location and species type, along with the height, circumference and crown circumference of the tree.

“Once we get those measurements, we look at the tree and compare it to the current champion and see if it’s in the running.”

For more instructions on how to measure your, click here.

You can find the nomination form click here.