2018's Great American Tree Competition

Announcing 2018's Great American Tree

The Lone Hill United Methodist Church National Champion Eastern Redcedar (Juniperus virginiana), has planted a legacy upon the residents of Coffee County, Georgia and within the hearts of American Grove members.

2018’s Great American Tree, the Lone Hill United Methodist Church National Champion Eastern Redcedar, is as strong as it is sturdy, lifting the spirits of those who have come into contact with its encompassing stature in the cemetery that traces its history to it first known burial in 1848.

Through the years the tree has been featured in such varied publications as the Douglas EnterpriseSmithsonian magazine, Janisse Ray’s book Wild Card Quilt, and the Coffee Historical Society’s Coffee Chronicles. Those visiting will witness a majestic tree that has nurtured and sheltered generations of the faithful. 

Recent measurements re-affirmed this Eastern Redcedar’s stature as a National Champion.  The circumference of the trunk is 251 inches, its height is 56 feet, and the crown exceeds 88 feet. The estimated age is approximately 250 years old.

This humbling giant remains immortal to those who have had the pleasure to stumble across it. Standing under its shade, there is a calm and somber atmosphere while providing comfort to those who need it most. This tree is more than just a community member, it is a family member for those who have loved ones resting in Coffee County. 

All submissions received in our 2018 Great American Tree Competition, from the youngest sapling to decade old oaks, aid in the celebration of our nation’s diversity of trees. Each of the 15 submissions represents the American Grove motto "Plant Your Legacy." Click a photo entry below to learn more! 

Woodlands_Walking Stick_canopy

Aralia spinosa, Devil’s Walking Stick

Woodlands Garden
932 Scott Blvd
Decatur, GA 30030 
Height: 33.1 feet
Circumference: 15.8 inches

Spread: 10 feet
Diameter: 5.03 inches


The Devil’s Walking Stick, Aralia spinosa, located at Woodlands Garden is a Champion Tree of metro Atlanta. This tree is cared for by the staff of the public garden and can be visited any day of the year by visitors for free. The sharp thorns found on the trunk, branches, and leaves give Devil’s Walking Stick its common name. In summer, this Champion provides a unique canopy of the largest compound leaf of any native tree with each leaf growing up to 5 feet long! The large clusters of flowers rise above the foliage like a beacon enticing pollinators like native bees. Come visit and see this Champion Devil’s Walking Stick for yourself!

E-mail me when people leave their comments –

You need to be a member of American Grove to add comments!

Join American Grove


This reply was deleted.