View 2017's GATC Nominees

Great American Tree 2017

This year’s Great American Tree competition had 30 charming nominations, all who uniquely defined what it means to be a summer tree. Our top five trees with the most member votes were Memorable Magnoila, Rhea Water Oak, White Oak of Tennessee, Pentz Pecan, and Magnolia Macrophylla.

Thanks to all the tree-enthusiast throughout our nation who contributed entries to our 3nd annual competition. Your participation is important to our organization dedicated to flourishing urban forests.

Click a photo below to learn more about each unique entry.

Over a thousand votes and the final decision from an all star urban forestry panel concludes our national search. The American Grove team is honored to introduce…

The Pentz Sweet Pecan as 2017's Great American Tree!

This charming softshell hickory was nominated by William David Smith for the astounding range at which it provides shade,unmistakably strong branches, and the nutty snack it produces. A tree that has become a prominent member of the Pentz family is an ideal summer tree worthy of this year's title. 

Second place has been awarded to The Bigleaf Magnolia, Magnolia macrophylla. Our winning Champion Tree resides in the forest within the city: Decatur, Georgia. This tree can be found in Woodlands Gardens where it is well loved by all visitors; we dare you to try to pass this tree without giving it a hug! The fallen leaves of this tree are constructed into fairy wings for children who attend the Woodlands' 'Fairies in the Garden' event. A Great American Tree is one that brings communities together, such as this one. Its broad leaves fit together perfectly to create an umbrella canopy that provides much needed relief on hot summer days.

Our third place goes to another Tennessee tree, a white oak captured as the sun peaks behind its branches. Vibrant hues of yellow, blue, and green across the landscape evoke a feeling of pure tranquility. As I admire this photo, I can not help but reminisce on serene memories of warm summer nights enjoyed with good friends and even better scenery. The peaceful aura of this tree reminds us to take a well deserved break, breathe fresh air, and enjoy the gentle caress of sunshine on our faces.

Although we could only have 3 winning trees, we are thankful for all members who entered our Great American Tree competition. There were 30 beautiful entries and each one deserves national recognition for its might, height, and charisma. The American Grove team is appreciative of the support of all our members from around the nation, and enjoyed viewing of some of the beautiful species that fill our nations diverse canopy. To view more photos of our winners (and nominees) visit our Great American Tree Tab.

2017 Winners

First Place goes to Pentz Pecan (or softshell hickory) from Sommerville, Tennessee. 


2nd place goes to Magnolia Macrophylla from Woodland's garden in Atlanta Georgia


3rd place awarded to a Tennessee White Oak