Detailed Findings & Methodology
Trees have long been the beloved subject of poets such as Joyce Kilmer, Robert Frost, and William Makepeace Thackeray, but they still needed a champion. Eventually, forest and tree preservation concerns prompted conservation efforts.
In the early part of the 20th century, states began to recognize trees indigenous to their state and started designating them official state trees. Virginia was the first state to name an official tree when it named the Flowering Dogwood in 1918. Alabama was the last to do so, designating the Southern Longleaf Pine as its official tree in 1997. Half of all the official trees were named in the 1930s and 1940s.
If you can’t get to all 50 states to see each state tree, you can see all 50 state trees in Washington, D.C., at The National Grove of State Trees, a 30-acre attraction at the United States National Arboretum.
Planting for the grove began in 1989 and was a collaboration of the National Association of State Foresters, the American Forest Foundation, the USDA Forest Service, and the U.S. National Arboretum.
Institutions such as the national arboretum raise awareness about tree population as concerns about deforestation persist. According to a study by Nature magazine three years ago, there are 3.04 trillion trees on our planet, or 422 trees for every person on Earth. In the U.S., there are 716 trees for every person. Those numbers were a pleasant surprise to scientists. But the study also found that there are 46% fewer trees since deforestation was begun by mankind.
24/7 Wall St. compiled a list of each state’s official tree from online sources, including state websites, media outlets, and information from United States National Arboretum and Nature magazine.