Wye Oak - A "Quiet Giant" that was the state tree of Maryland
The Wye Oak was about 450 years old when it was toppled by a thunderstorm on June 6, 2002. By the time of its death, the tree stood about 96' tall, had a circumference of almost 32', a crown spread of roughly 120 feet, and the bole (trunk - which was mostly hollow when it fell) weighed nearly 31 tons. This great white oak tree predated the birth of a nation. It was revered by the Indians, as was The Charter Oak in Connecticut. This "Quiet Giant" provided shelter and water for weary travelers along the road that came to link Oxford to Philadelphia. The reservoir was said to come from the drip of rain water from its leaves. The large burls (knees) that helped to support the tree are thought to have come from tied horses stamping their feet on the roots.
Fortunately, the value of this magnificent tree was recognized early on. Not only were hundreds of acorns from the tree planted in many areas of the country, but also, it was cloned by Dr. Frank Gouin (Professor Emeritus of Horticulture, University of Maryland). Two of the clones of the champion tree created by grafting Wye seedlings to Wye acorns were planted at Mt. Vernon in 2002.
Go to The Tanglewood Oak (NC)
Go to The Charter Oak (Connecticut)
Go to Wood Characteristics