Categorized | Environment, Featured

Wiliwili tree crowned largest for its species

(Photo courtesy of Nikiforos Delatolas | Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative)

(Photo courtesy of Nikiforos Delatolas | Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative)


The Department of Land and Natural Resources’ Division of Forestry and Wildlife announces that a wiliwili tree (Erythrina sandwicensis) from Hawaii Island has been selected as a national champion in American Forest’s Big Tree Program.

Location: Waikoloa Dry Forest

Nominated by: Jen Lawson – Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative

Trunk Circumference: 186.96 inches

Average Crownspread: 43.50 feet

Height: 40 feet

For more than 70 years the National Big Tree Program has invited arboreal enthusiasts to locate the largest trees of their species for the title of Big Tree Champion.

By calling attention to these iconic trees, the program raises awareness of the numerous ecosystem benefits they provide.

The pre-eminent catalogue of champions is the National Register of Big Trees, a biannual publication released by American Forests. The most recent edition included a wiliwili (Erythrina sandwicensis) from Waikoloa Dry Forest.

The Hawaii Big Tree Competition locates the largest native and culturally significant tree species in Hawaii. To be considered for nomination, the species must be included on the national list of eligible species.

Hawaii currently has 21 eligible species, but efforts are underway to increase that number.

The largest trees of each species are referred to as “National Champions,” an award which is based purely on the tree’s measurements.

Everyone is welcome to nominate a big tree. The champions are decided by a point system, determined by the following equation: circumference (inches) + height (feet) + 1/4th of the average crown spread (feet) = total points.

For a species to be included in the register, nominations must be given to state coordinators prior to Sept. 15.

— Find out more:

Hawai‘i in the National Big Tree Program

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