Dawson County Government News

Dawson County Champion Tree Program Enters Third Season

10/18/11 (Dawson County, GA) The Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC), Dawson County Tree Preservation Committee, and Keep Dawson County Beautiful are continuing the Champion Tree program for Dawson County.

The first three years were very successful as 31 trees were nominated, 18 crowned Dawson County champions, and 3 state champions. The Dawson County Champion Tree program is associated with GFC’s state program and is designed to find the largest trees in the county by species and possibly become a state champion. The nomination period runs through November 30, 2011.

Upon receipt of the nomination form, a member of the GFC will come to the location and measure the tree's circumference at 4 1/2 feet above soil line, the tree's height, and the estimated crown. Points will be assigned to the tree based on the state Champion Tree Program.

The highest scoring tree by species will be crowned Dawson County Champion Tree if the tree outscores that species current champion or the species has no champion. Trees that appear to score higher than the current state champion will be submitted to the state office for consideration.

Any tree growing in Dawson County may be nominated. Provide as much tree measurement information as possible on the entry form. If you cannot provide measurement information, that's ok. Fill in the rest of the form, and mail it to the GFC office at 4500 Highway 53 E. Dawsonville, Ga. 30534. Entry forms may be obtained at the GFC office, Dawson County Extension office, City Hall and other public places throughout Dawson County.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please provide detail directions and location. Call the GFC office if you feel it is necessary. GPS coordinates are very helpful, and a photograph of the tree is desirable. Please identify the tree species on the back along with the names of any persons in the photo. The GFC Forester will not enter private property to measure the tree without the property owners consent. The Champion tree has created a lot of interest in Dawson County trees, and the importance of trees.

Designating a tree as a Champion tree, does not mean that tree is "untouchable". We certainly hope the tree will be around for many years and continue to grow. We realize that in a growing county like Dawson, some trees will be lost because of development and construction as well as natural causes. Some trees that are designated Champions may however be allowed to continue to grow rather than replaced by new trees, and provide benefits now and for future generations.

All 2011 Dawson County Champion trees and owners will be recognized February 17, 2012 during the annual Arbor Day celebration. For more information call Tony Page at the Georgia Forestry Commission, 706 265-3707.


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