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Former Champion Willow Genetics Saved

American Forests is the oldest conservation non-profit organization in the USA. They have a project, started in the 40s to catalog, protect, and preserve the largest trees living in the United States. They pick around 750 champions every year, amazing and awe inspiring giants of arbor culture. The trees include urban trees, but also many giants left untouched in virgin forests. They focus on the biggest and best, but they say on their site that "regardless of size, all trees are champions of the environment."

 One of the trees, a former champion from the year 2010 nominated by MPRB arborist Kevin O'Connor, comes from our very own Hennepin Heritage Black Willow
County. It was a Black Willow, Salix Nigra, with a circumference of 384", 64' tall, and a 73'
The tree died, and had to be cut down, but it was an amazing specimen. Chad had time to get some cuttings from the tree before it died. They took root, and just like willows are know to do, they are growing quick and wild. With some structural pruning, they are looking great so far. These trees have some very large shoes to fill, but hopefully they can join the ranks of some of Americas largest trees. Pictures of the new champion willows coming soon!

Link to the American Forests Big Tree page, a must for anyone who wants to see some amazing trees:

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