Tree Information

Common Name: sweet birch

Scientific Name: Betula lenta

Native/Naturalized: Native to Virginia

Database ID: 2379

Status: alive

National Champion: no

Virginia Champion: yes

Circumference: 109 in.

Height: 84 ft.

Crown: 64 ft.

Points: 209

Date Last Measured: 2021

Last Measured by: Brendan Fitzgerald

Date First Measured: 2015

Comments: The tree appears exceptionally healthy. It is a double-stemmed tree, and the stems physically diverge about 4' above ground, but there is bark inclusion between the stems down to about 2.5' above ground. At that height, the stems are completely fused (circumference=134""), and share a single root collar. Given the conformation of the root collar and the near identical size of the stems at 4.5' above ground (circumference=78"" and 76""), there is strong evidence that the tree originated from a single seed. However, the stems do not appear to have a common pith above ground line when applying the visual rule of pith line tracing.

The measurements and score presented here reflect that this is a single tree. However, using the fused trunk measurement unfairly inflates the score relative to single-stem specimens. Thus the score incorporates the composite functional circumference calculation using the two stem measurements above.

Tree was previously measured by Carmean, Kirwan, and Williamson in 2015 at 140"" (fused trunk measured 2' above ground), 91', 64', 247 points.

Declared national champion in 2018 and recognized as national co-champion in 2019, sharing the title with a tree in New Hampshire. Was not listed as national champ in 2020 due to lack of validation of trunk measurement.

More Photos

Top. Brendan Fitzgerald. 2021. Bottom. G. Williamson. 2015.

Location of Tree

Tree is located in: Giles

State Map

Land Owner: Mountain Lake Conservancy

GPS Coordinates: 37.36701, -80.53693

Owner Email:

Directions: Take Rt. 700 (Mountain Lake Road) past the hotel to the lower end of the lake. Pond Drain Road (gravel) goes left along drain. Tree is on uphill side of the road approximately 1/4 mile from Mountain Lake Road.

Owner Address: 115 HOTEL CIR

PEMBROKE, VA 24136-3055

Owner Phone: 540-626-7121

Contact Information

Contact Name: Eric Wiseman

Contact Email:

Contact Phone: 540-231-5148


Original Nominator(s): Byron Carmean, Jeff Kirwan, Gary Williamson

Additional Information

I.D. Fact Sheet

Print a QR Link to this big tree record

Our Partners