The Big Banyan Tree
The Big Banyan Tree is considered to be one of the oldest trees in the world. It’s located by the west bank of Jinbao River, China and was planted during the Sui Dynasty (581 – 618). Standing at about 17 metres high and measuring about 7 metres in diameter the whole tree coveres an amazing 1,000 square metres.
The amazing Baobab Tree is the most famous tree in the whole of Madagascar and also it’s national symbol. The people believe these massive trees hold the spirits of the death and that is why they are also referred to as the Sacred Baobab. Also in Africa, the Baobab Tree plays an important role in African culture. In ancient times, kings and other leaders would have their meetings under huge Baobabs to discuss matters of great importance. According to them, the Baobab Tree didn’t just provide shelter, but also holded magical properties which would aid them in making wise decisions. [Continue Reading...]
These massive trees can grow up to nearly 100 feet (30 m) tall and 35 feet (11 m) wide. Their defining characteristic: their swollen trunk are actually water storage – the baobab tree can store as much as 31,700 gallon (120,000 l) of water to endure harsh drought conditions. Baobab trees are native to Madagascar, the mainland of Africa, and Australia. A cluster of “the grandest of all” baobab trees (Adansonia grandidieri) can be found in the Baobab Avenue, near Morondava, in Madagascar.
The two-legged tree (Circus Tree)
As a hobby, bean farmer Axel Erlandson shaped trees – he pruned, bent, and grafted trees into fantastic shapes and called them “Circus Trees.” This weird two-legged tree is an example of that. Erlandson was very secretive and refused to reveal his methods on how to grow the Circus Trees (he even carried out his grafting behind screens to protect against spies!) and carried the secrets to his grave. The trees were later bought by millionaire Michael Bonfante, who transplanted them to his amusement park Bonfante Gardens in Gilroy in 1985.
Methuselah, the Oldest Tree in the World
Ok this might not be the most impressive looking tree in the collection, but once you take into account that it is almost 5.000 years old, then it’s hard not be in awe by this force of nature. This bristlecone pine is named Methuselah, after the Biblical figure who lived to be 969 years old. The Methuselah tree, found at 11,000 feet above sea level, is 4,838 years old – it is not only the oldest tree but also the oldest living non-clonal organism in the world. To protect the tree from vandalism, the authorities are keeping the exact location of this tree a secret, but it is known to grow in White Mountains of Inyo County in eastern California
General Sherman- World’s largest tree
Giant Sequoias, which only grow in Sierra Nevada, California, are the world’s biggest trees (in terms of volume). The biggest is General Sherman in the Sequoia National Park – one behemoth of a tree at 275 feet (83.8 m), over 52,500 cubic feet of volume (1,486 m³), and over 6000 tons in weight. General Sherman is approximately 2,200 years old – and each year, the tree adds enough wood to make a regular 60-foot tall tree. For over a century there was a fierce competition for the title of the largest tree: besides General Sherman, there is General Grant at King’s Canyon National Park, which actually has a larger circumference (107.5 feet / 32.77 m vs. Sherman’s 102.6 feet / 31.27 m). However, to simplify the matter, it was determined that volume should be the determining factor.
Chapel-Oak of Allouville-Bellefosse
The Chapel-Oak of Allouville-Bellefosse is the most famous tree in France – actually, it’s more than just a tree! It’s a building and a religious monument all in one. In 1669, l’Abbe du Detroit and du Cerceau decided to build a chapel in (at that time) a 500 years old or so oak tree made hollow by a lightning bolt. The priests built a small altar to the Virgin Mary. Later on, a second chapel and a staircase were added. Now, parts of the tree are dead, the crown keeps becoming smaller and smaller every year. Poles and cables now support the aging tree, which in fact, may not live much longer. As a symbol, however, it seems that the Chapel-Oak of Allouville-Bellefosse may live on forever.