How are the leaflets arranged?
Some leaves have leaflets growing out of a central point, others have stalks.
The leaf is made up of many leaflets and they are arranged on both sides of a central stalk.
The leaf is made up of many leaflets and they come from one point. Think of it like your fingers coming out from the palm of your hand.
What type of tree is it?
Pick from the two types of trees below.
These trees have leaves and lose their leaves in the winter.
These trees have needles, and keep them throughout the winter.
How are the leaves grouped?
Take a look at the leaf. Is it simple, with just one leaf, or made up of many leaflets (compound).
Just one leaf, undivided.
The leaf is composed of many leaflets.
What does the edge of the leaf look like?
Take a look at the edge of the leaf.
The leaf edges are smooth or the lobes of the leaf are wavy.
The leaf edges are toothed or the lobes of the leaf are pointy.
Do the leaves have lobes?
Lobes are obvious indents in the leaf along the edge.
The leaves have lobes.
The leaves do not have lobes.
What is the blade structure?
Take a look at the leaf. What shape does it resemble?
Leaves wider at the base than the tip.
Leaves longer than they are wide.
What is the leaf base?
Take a look at the base of the leaf. The base of the leaf can be found at the bottom where the stem attaches to the branch.
The base of the leaf starts at the same spot on both sides of the stem.
One side of the base is lower than the other side.
How many times is the structure divided?
The leaf is composed of many leaflets.
The leaf has one central stem with leaflets.
Divided 2-3 Times
The leaflet is broken down into further leaflets.
How are the leaf buds arranged?
The leaf stems or branches are arranged in two different ways.
The leaves or branches are attached directly across from each other.
The leaves or branches are attached singly and alternate.
What shape are the leaves?
Take a look at the shape of the leaves. Pick the one that matches your leaf best.
The leaf shape is mostly oval.
The tip of the leaf is wider than the base.
The leaf base is mostly flat while the tip of the leaf forms a triangle.
The base of the leaf is rounded and the shape resembles a heart.
The leaf is long and narrow.
The leaf is shaped like the palm of your hand, spread open.
The leaf has strongly wavy edges.
Does the tree have needles or scales?
Coniferous trees have two types of leaves (or needles).
The needles are attached to the stem, either in bundles or singly.
The leaves are overlapping scales.
How are the needles bundled?
Count the number of needles in the bundle.
Just one needle, no bundles.
Two needles in the bundle.
Three needles in the bundle.
Five or more needles in the bundle.
What length are the needles?
Estimate the length of the needle. Don't know? Choose from the trees to the right.
Short (Less than 5cm)
Short needles, less than 5 cm.
Long (More than 5cm)
Long needles, over 5 cm.
What shape are the needles?
The needles are straight.
The needles slightly curve or twist.
What size is the fruit?
The size will vary.
Fruits under 1 cm.
Fruits between 1 cm - 5 cm.
Fruits over 5 cm.
What shape is the fruit?
Fruit shapes can vary. Pick a descriptor that best matches the shape of the fruit.
Round shaped fruit, like a berry or apple.
Longer fruit than it is wide.
Long fruit, or somewhat linear (like the key of a maple).
Heart shaped fruit like an acorn.
What colour is the fruit?
The colour of the fruit may vary throughout the year.
What colour is the flower?
Alaska Paper Birch
Alaska white birch, Alaska birch
White Elm, Water Elm, Grey Elm, Soft Elm
American Rowan-Tree, Dogberry, Pigberry
Wild plum or red plum
Balm Poplar, Balsam, Rough-Barked Poplar
Beaked willow, long-beaked willow and diamond willow
Swamp Ash, Basket Ash, Water Ash
Wild Black Cherry
Common Locust, False Acacia
Hard Maple, Rock Maple
Yellow-Barked Oak, Yellow Oak
Bog spruce, Swamp spruce, Water spruce
American Walnut, American Black Walnut
Colorado Spruce, Silver Spruce
Muscle Beech, American Hornbeam, Smooth Barked Ironwood
Mossycup Oak, Blue Oak
White Walnut; Lemon Walnut
Canadian Plum, Black Plum
Yellow Chestnut Oak, Chinkapin Oak
Wild Cherry, Common Chokecherry
Northern hackberry, American hackberry
Common Hop Tree
Brittle Willow, Snap Willow
Dwarf Chinquapin Oak
Dwarf Chestnut Oak
Eastern Flowering Dogwood
Great-flowered dogwood, arrow-wood, common dogwood
Eastern Red Cedar
Eastern White Cedar
Eastern White Pine
European Black Alder
European White Birch
European White Poplar
New England hawthorn
Northern Swamp Dogwood, Panicle Dogwood
Diamond willow, Narrow heartleaf willow, Missouri willow
Viburnum trilobum, Viburnum opulus var. americanum
American Cranberrybush, Cranberrybush Viburnum
Thorny Locust, Sweet Locust
Banksian Pine, Grey Pine, Scrub Pine
Kentucky Coffee Tree
American Cranberry; Bearberry
Big toothed aspen
Western Box-Elder, Ashleaf Maple
Dwarf maple, moose maple and white maple
Mountain Paper Birch
Mountain white birch, Eastern paper birch
Sweet Viburnum, Sheepberry
Western Catalpa, Cigar Tree
Northern Pin Oak
Hills Oak, Jack Oak
Common hawthorn, single-seeded hawthorn
Hedge Apple Tree
Salix lucida ssp. lasiandra
Common Pawpaw, False Banana
Fire Cherry, Bird Cherry, Red Cherry
Swamp Oak, Spanish Oak, Water Oak
Swamp-Sumac, Poison-Dogwood, Poison-Oak
Scarlet Maple, Soft Maple, Curled Maple
Northern Red Oak, Grey Oak
Red Osier Dogwood
Western Serviceberry, Mountain Juneberry, Shadbush
White Sassafras, Cinnamon-Wood, Mitten-Tree
Salix lucida ssp. lucida
Soft Maple, White Maple
Bog Cranberry, Swamp Cranberry
Tag alder, Gray alder, Hoary alder
Moosewood, Moose Maple, Whistlewood
Hard Maple, Curly Maple
Swamp White Oak
Swamp Oak, Blue Oak
American Larch; Eastern Larch
American Crabapple, Sweet Crabapple
Scotch elm, Scots elm
Approximate Age: 100 years
Historical/Cultural Significance: Wychwood Park is one of Toronto's unique neighbourhoods, and its natural landscape is a critical part of it. Named after Wychwood Forest in Oxfordshire, it was founded in 1874, and is well known for its Arts & Crafts houses, Taddle Creek and pond, and 800 or so significant trees, including several hundred large White and Red Oaks, as well as Black Locust, Bassword, Beech and Hemlock. The Park, with 60 houses on 50 acres, was named a Heritage Conservation District in 1985.
Approximate Age: 200 years
Height: 27.4 m
Circumference: 457 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: The tree is of Provincial significance, possibly National, through its association with the Blake family.
It is located on the headwaters of Garrison Creek in what was the parkland of the Blake Estate, known as "Humewood". William Hume Blake (1809 - 1872) was first professor of common and civil law at King's College and was elected to the Legislative Assembly in 1847. His son, the Honourable Edward Blake (1833-1912) was the second Premier of Ontario, 1871-1872, a Canadian Constitutional expert, and federal Liberal leader 1880-1887.
Following a Mission in 1911, the Anglican congregation of St Thomas determined to establish a maternity home for unwed mothers. They purchased the Blake property near St. Clair and Bathurst Streets in 1912. The "Humewood House" opened on April 23, 1912.
The Blake house burnt down and was replaced by the present building, which opened February 12, 1925. Partnered with the Board of Education the Agency is one of the oldest and most respected organizations in the country, helping pregnant and parenting young women, ages 13-21.
The tree is well known and loved in the community. It was on a list of significant trees compiled by the arborists in the former City of York. It is clearly visible from St. Clair Avenue. It also dominates the well-treed park site despite the fact that it is separated from the park by the width of the roadway.
Approximate Age: 260 years
Historical/Cultural Significance: This was a young tree when the French established their second trading fort, Fort Toronto in 1749 at the foot of the Portage on which the tree stands - the fort from which Toronto takes its name.
It was part of the forest canopy by 1764 when Alexander Henry passed by on June 19th with a group of Mississaugas on his way to Fort Niagara from Mackinac, where he had been taken prisoner the previous year in the Pontiac wars.
It was a mature tree when Benjamin Frobisher passed by, recommending in a 1784 report, that the Northwest Company use this as the preferred route to the West.
It witnessed the passage of Lieutenant Governor Simcoe on Wednesday September 25th, 1793, on his way to Penetanguishene.
The feet of the War Party dispatched by General Brock in 1812 to join Tecumseh and capture Fort Mackinac trod over the roots of this tree.
Chief of the Mississaugas, Peter Jones passed by with his people, the Mississaugas of the New Credit, on their way to a meeting regarding their Treaty, with the Inspector General, Jacques Baby on his estate in 1828.
In the spring of 1997 this was one of a hundred and fifty oak trees along the Toronto Carrying Place, all 125 years old, which was proclaimed by Metropolitan Toronto as an ancient oak grove and named in honour of Tuhbanahneequay, daughter of Wabanosay, Chief of the Mississaugas at the time of the Toronto Purchase.
David Orsini, a local landscape architect, has been propagating acorns from this tree. The continuation of a local gene pool with a pedigree of more than three centuries is both remarkable and essential. It reflects the integrity of our natural heritage as a living entity.
Approximate Age: 250 years
Historical/Cultural Significance: The Nicholas Family's red oak is probably one of the largest red oaks in Ontario if not Canada.
The tree is part of an ancient oak savannah and is an indigenous species of the Humber River Watershed. It is a remnant oak whose acorns can be used to propagate quercus rubra.
It is a pre-settlement tree from before 1793, it is located in the immediate vicinity of the historic Toronto Carrying Place Trail. One family that owned the red oak, had family members, that have received in total, four Orders of Canada for their various contributions to our country.
In the Year 2010, this red oak is to be featured in "Toronto Tree Portraits" calendar.
Photo courtesy of Mr. Glen Gauslin, Toronto and Region Conservation Authority - August 23, 2006.
Approximate Age: 90 years
Historical/Cultural Significance: This tree is a remnant of the original forest that once resided in this area. The tree has been a landmark rooted at the 18th hole at Cataraquai Golf and Country since its opening in 1917. In addition to this, the tree is a prominant figure on the organization's corporate logo and has been since 1933.
Approximate Age: 200 - 250 years
Historical/Cultural Significance: This Black Oak is amongst the earliest living examples of its species in Toronto. A remnant of the aboriginal forest and Black Oak Savannah, it is, with an estimated age of 200 - 250 years, one of the largest surviving Black Oaks.
It is within a hundred metres of the Toronto Carrying Place and is on the land acquired from the Mississaugas at the Gunshot Treaty agreement of 1787 for the militarily crucial Carrying Place lands.
It is located on the Estate of Jaques Baby, Inspector General of Upper Canada. He purchased the land in 1813, and it remained in his family until the Government of Canada purchased it c. 1909, for use as the New Garrison Common.
It was subsequently resold the following year to developer Robert Home Smith, who laid out the subdivision, building the impressive Humber Stone Entry Gates at Jane Street, with his own house at number one Baby Point Road (designated under the Ontario Heritage Act, Pt IV ) immediately inside the Gates.
Poet Raymond Souster (winner of the Governor General's Award for Poetry) has written poems about the Tree - one in 1968 and another in 1991.
Approximate Age: 90 years
Height: 42 m
Circumference: 613.9 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: This Eastern Cottonwood is very well-known locally. While it is not quite the largest Eastern Cottonwood in the area (probably second largest though) it is still quite an attraction. Unlike many large tree specimens, this tree is not growing in a park or along a roadside. This Cottonwood is located deep in the woods at Bakus Mill Heritage Park. The tree is quite the spectacle for any one wishing to go find it. A well laid out trail will take you to the tree. As you approach the tree it is easy to tell why it is so unique. Towering well over the canopy level, this 40 M tall, 6 M around giant dwarfs all other trees around it. It is likely 80-100+ years old, which is bordering ancient as far as Eastern Cottonwoods go. This pioneer tree has helped establish and has witnessed the developement of the forest that surrounds it.
Approximate Age: 130 years
Circumference: 370 cm
Height: 30 m
Historical/Cultural Significance: The house behind the tree was built in 1895. Originally, it was a retirement cottage for the director of Chalmers Church. The church is located in the neighbourhood of the site. The home was named the Mansfield Cottage. It is estimated that the tree existed before the home was built. The tree is now a spectacular focal point in this Elora neighbourhood and is greatly valued by all residents and visitors.
This tree received the first Community Heritage Tree plaque to be presented in Centre Wellington Township through their local Treasured Community Heritage Tree Program. This tree has now been nominated in the Ontario Heritage Tree Program.
Approximate Age: 200 years old
Height: 21.3 m
Circumference: 375 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: This sugar maple stands on a sand dune overlooking the eastern end of Lake Erie just west of the lakes confluence with the Niagara River. The tree overlooks a beach where the Neutral Indians are known to have camped and harvested chert with which they made stone tools. The tree is about a mile from Old Fort Erie and quite likely observed preparations of British and Hessian infantry to retake the fort from American forces during the War of 1812. The tree is a landmark to boaters and fishermen on the lake and holds together the sand dune on which it stands.
Approximate Age: 75 years old
Height: 25 m
Circumference: 331 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: Coronation Park was created in 1934 when the seawall was built from Strachan Avenue to Bathurst Street. A commemorative planting for the park was organized, inspired by war veterans.
The planting occurred on May 12, 1937. It was believed to be the largest ceremonial planting in Canada at the time. To provide a central focus to the park, a Royal Oak tree was planted in tribute to King George VI and surrounded by a ring of silver maples, symbolizing the countries of the British Empire.
A grove of maple trees was planted in memory of the many Canadian troops who fought overseas, one of which is being recognized here as a Heritage Tree.
The significance of this waterfront park was further enhanced when the World War II 50th Anniversary Memorial was unveiled at Coronation Park on November 14, 1995. The memorial is dedicated to the many Canadians who served their country at home and abroad. It was designed by John McEwen and features two pair of bronze gates in the shape of a ship's prow. The openings and vistas formed by their north-south orientation provide entranceways which symbolize the departure of troops and their return home.
Approximate Age: 130 years
Height: 28 m
Circumference: 333 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: Tree is in front of the Aurora Cultural Centre, also known as the Church Street School, opened in 1886. The building was designated under the Ontario Heritage Act in 1981 and an Ontario Heritage Foundation plaque was erected at the site indicating this is one of the finest examples of a public school in the High Victorian manner. The school was reportedly attended by Lester Pearson who later won the Nobel Peace Prize, became Prime Minister of Canada and oversaw the introduction of the Maple Leaf Flag.
Approximate Age: 150 years
Circumference: 225 cm
Height: 40 m
Historical/Cultural Significance: This White Elm was identified by Henry Kock from the University of Guelph - Fox Arboretum, as an excellent specimen. Long upper branches sweeping down to street level, which is reminiscent of how the old Elms grew prior to the introduction of Dutch Elm disease. The size and crown shape of this tree, indicate its resistance to the disease and should be noted as an ideal tree to collect seed from for future propogation.
Approximate Age: 350 years
Historical/Cultural Significance: Throughout this tree's 350 years, many changes have taken place to the land that it grows upon. For the last 35 years, it has been one of the focal points of the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority's maple syrup programs at Kortright Centre. This tree is known as "Grandpa Maple" and has been visited by approximately 1 million people.
Approximate Age: 225 years
Height: 40 m
Circumference: 136 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: Not only is this a SAR tree, and is of considerable size. Its location on the war of 1812 British Army encampment on the Thames River, gives it major historical significance. Early photos of this site, complete with tepees and barracks show the tree standing at approximately 30-40 feet. Tecumseh himself camped here for several days, before heading up the Thames River to be later killed only about 10 km from this site.
Approximate Age: 300 years
Height: 25 m
Circumference: 475 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: The Allviiew White Oak is significant in all four categories.
It is a distinguishable landmark marking the former border (before 1957) between Burlington and Aldershot; it is of unique age and size in Burlington; it is associated with the area’s first landowning settler, Joseph Brant (1742 - 1807). Finally, it is believed to be a surveyor’s benchmark for the Crown Grant of the 3450-acre parcel of land known at “Brant’s Block”, which for more than a century was the basis of subsequent development of Wellington Square and the Village of Burlington.
In 1797 the Crown signed a treaty with the Mississauga nation to acquire the same block of land, which was then granted to Brant. The western boundary ran 45º NW from what is now Allview Avenue near what is now North Shore Boulevard (then a trail) to a point just past the Niagara escarpment. That boundary formed part of an earlier survey of land to the west, previously purchased by the Crown.
It has long been believed that the White Oak was, or contained, the surveyor’s bench mark. A former resident of 552 Allview Avenue recalls that circa 1940 an arborist and work crew from Ottawa spent two or three days at work on the preservation of the great oak, cutting limbs and patching it with tar. They explained that the iron stake in or at this tree was a marker that lined up with a V-notch in the escarpment (which then could still be seen) to define a boundary of great historical significance. The north-west corner of Brants Block was used in the survey by Samuel Wilmot for the Mississauga Purchase in 1806 and the New Survey by Reuben Sherwood in 1817, north to the Derry Road and beyond. It is now the Flamborough - Halton Township Line, north of the escarpment.
The Burlington Historical Society Archives includes copies of maps from 1797 to the early 20th century, showing the significance of “Brant’s Block” to the early and continuing development of Burlington.
The Burlington Horticultural Society, in association with the City of Burlington and the Royal Botanical Gardens, began a project in 1975 to establish Burlington’s Honour Roll of Trees, which included the Allview Oak and a note about its significance for Brant’s Block. The City of Burlington’s Inventory of Heritage Resources includes the Allview Oak. The Honour Roll and the Inventory do not, however, include legal protection measures. The City’s urban forestry department has worked to protect and preserve the tree.
Approximate Age: 200 years
Circumference: 369.5 cm
Height: 31.2 m
Historical/Cultural Significance: This tree is likely greater than 200 years of age and is part of a remnant Carolinian Woodlot. The tree exists on a sand ridge once used by native indians as a travel cooridor all along Lake Erie. The tree itself is the largest in this woodlot but was once part of a group of large American Beech trees of which it is the only surviving member.
Approximate Age: 9 years
Height: 4.5 m
Circumference: 27 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: John and Mary moved to Lot 9 on Concession 1. Mary was sent a pear from Boston, MA and subsequently planted it's seeds on this lot. The tree grew successfully and was admired by many. In 1980 the tree was 165 years old and placed on the Ontario Honour Roll of Trees; but within the 1980's the tree became dangerous and was chopped down. However, scions were grafted from the original and the Oshawa Community Museum managed to acquire two of these scions. They were planted in the Museum's gardens in 2001 and continue to thrive there today.
Approximate Age: 150 years
Circumference: 154 cm
Height: 35 m
Historical/Cultural Significance: The large Tulip Tree (Liriodendron tulipifera) at 35 Cross Street in Dundas was the overall winner of the Heritage Tree Hunt held by the Dundas Valley Tree Keepers in 2009. Not only was it one of the few trees to receive multiple nominations by members of the public, it was also chosen as Best Tree Overall by a panel of four expert judges.
This tree is a fine example of a Carolinian species that is symbolic of the Deciduous Forest Region of Eastern North America. It is part of the most northern population of Tulip Trees in North America. According to local botanist Paul O’Hara, the Tulip Tree at 35 Cross is likely an original, rather than a planted tree. Based on examination of the tree.
The tree is in excellent health, according to criteria developed by the Faculty of Forestry at the University of Toronto. It flowers reliably. Tulip Tree seedlings appear regularly in surrounding gardens and many of these seedlings have found homes across the town of Dundas.
In addition to its importance to residents of the neighbourhood, the tree is something of a celebrity. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, Japanese officials would come from time to time to measure the height and girth of the tree. Apparently there was another Tulip Tree in Japan that was close in measurement to the Cross Street tree ... it was important to them to see which tree was the largest. Buses full of tourists visiting Canada and the nearby Royal Botanical Gardens have been known to stop for a look at the tree.
Approximate Age: 250 years
Historical/Cultural Significance: This special oak tree is located on a vista of land overlooking the Humber River, a Canadian Heritage River that had its' tenth anniversary in 2009. This indigenous species of the Humber River Watershed is also in the immediate vicinity of the Historic Toronto Carrying Place Trail. The first Nations of North America used this trail as their trade route. With the coming of the Europeans to North America, explorers, missionaries and mapmakers used and recorded this aboriginal "highway".
The Gardiner Family of Toronto owned the property, on which this tree is located, from 1933 to 1950 which they called their summer state, "Rivermede". Percy R. and Gertrude Gardiner's son, daughter and both their spouses, all became recipients of the Order of Canada for their various contributions to our country.
Photo courtesy of Ms. Edith George - 2010
- The bur oaks of Maryboro have lived to witness five empires - Huron, French, Iroquois, British and Ojibwa. The oldest and largest specimen, known to its admirers as the Grand Old Lady, has been estimated from a core at 380 years. For generations the Grove marked the head of the Fenelon Portage on the Trent River - on the fur trade route from Lake Ontario to Lake Huron. With colonization it became a focal point of James Wallis' 1837 Maryboro Lodge - then the finest home in the region, and the Estate from which Fenelon Falls was subdivided. For the village it has always been a place for community events, strawberry socials and afternoon teas. Born in the era of the canoe, saw the Victoria Railroad come and go, and oversaw the construction of the Trent-Severn Waterway, National Historic Site.
Approximate Age: over 225 years old
Height: 15.25 m
Circumference: 502 cm
Historical and Cultural Significance: This Black Cherry tree is located in Rose Cemetery, the oldest cemetery in Prince Edward County. Culturally and historically, this tree has great significance as it is the landmark around which the cemetery was formed in 1790, and around which the first Marysburgh settlers in the County buried their dead. This has been proven by the Rose Cemetery Project, Conduced by Queen's University, which uses Ground Penetrating Radar to confirm that the first burials emanate outward from the tree’s spokes. The original tree has been cut down but many smaller trees have grown out from this much older stump. This Black Cherry's will to live on and still stand as a natural marker within the centre of the Rose Cemetery, makes it one of the most significant trees in Prince Edward County.
- Approximate Age: 250+ years oldCircumference: 471cmHeight: 31.5mHistorical/Cultural Significance: This majestic white oak is a distinguishable landmark in the Westminster Ponds/Pond Mills Conservation Area. This site is the largest publicly-owned Environmentally Significant Area in London and has been designated as a Provincially Significant Wetland. Cherished by the community, this beautiful tree is well over 250 years old and may have been witness to the region’s pre-settlement history. In its early days, this tree likely watched over Lieutenant Governor John Graves Simcoe and his wife as they camped at the Westminster Ponds before hiking to the forks of the Thames in March of 1793. This tree also stood in close proximity to Swartz’s Tavern where the prominent Upper Canada Rebellion leader William Lyon MacKenzie stayed a guest in 1837.
Approximate Age (yrs): 150
Circumference (cm): 381
Height (m): 18
This magnificent tree has withstood changes to the local forest and has endured, original settlers/logging, pasturing, farming, and has returned to forest. This Shumard Oak is significant as a symbol for the stewardship efforts in South Western Ontario.
- This Silver Maple has survived decades of urban growth in the Roncesvalles Community. It is believed to be the oldest City/Sidewalk tree, in a commercial district.The tree, cherished by the neighbourhood, was safeguarded by both the community and the City Urban Planners, during the reconstruction of Roncesvalles Avenue, with the use of eco-flex pavers.
Circumference (cm): 137
Height (m): 27
Over its lifetime, this rare tree has been witness to many changes. In 1851, the Gore Grist Mill stood on sloping land above Spencer Creek to the north-west of this Chinquapin Oak tree. When the mill closed in the late 1920s, the Fisher family gave the entire mill property, including the land where the tree stands, to the Town of Dundas. The Fisher's Mill Park established in 2008 is now the spacious setting for the Chinquapin Oak, which continues to grow unimpeded and stands as a landmark near the western boundary of Dundas.
Height: 15.35 m
Circumference: 393.7 cm
Age: 200 years
This large Red Oak was once a part of a 5,000 acre parcel of land originally awarded to Major John Smith in 1792 for his loyal service to his Majesty's Forces, during the American Revolution. The Red Oak is inspiring, peaceful, strong and defiant having survived fierce storms such as Hurricane Hazel. Its large and beautiful crown provides habitat for squirrels, birds and insects alike and provides a wonderful source of shade for locals.
Approximate Age: 400 years old
Height: 21.3 m
Circumference: 518 cm
Historical/Cultural Significance: This white oak is the ofﬁcial boundary marker in the ﬁrst land deed in Upper Canada (now Ontario) signed in 1781 between the Chippawa and Mississauga Native Chiefs and the English Crown. The deed was for a four mile wide strip of land, paralleling the Niagara River, on the west side, running from Lake Ontario to Lake Erie. The land was transferred to King George III for 300 suites of clothing.
As described in the land deed, in order to mark the boundary of the said land, the four First Nations Chiefs chose a large white oak tree, forked 6 feet from the ground near Lake Ontario at a distance of 4 miles from the west bank of the Niagara River. In 1781 an indian trail now known as Lakeshore Road joined the mouth of the Niagara River with the indian encampment in the St. Catharines area. The indian trail passes beside the tree at street number 1300, just west of Four Mile Creek and the prior Lake Ontario/ Four Mile Creek swamp lands.
This deed also marked the ofﬁcial birth of Niagara on the Lake which held its 200th anniversary in 1981. This year, 2014, is the 233rd year since the recognition of this white oak. Across from the oak on the banks of Four Mile Creek, Captain Daniel Servos built the ﬁrst Niagara on the Lake homestead on Palatine Hill in 1783. The house was followed shortly, by a large barn, a grist mill, a saw mill, and the conversion of part of the house to a government store to sell supplies. The August 25 1782 ﬁrst census showed Niagara on the Lake consisted of 16 households numbering 84 people.
The white oak tree and its signiﬁcance was discovered in 2012 during an investigation of the history of the war of 1812-1814 by Dave Lee and Abe Epp, Niagara on the Lake residents. The assessment of the tree was done with the assistance of Andrew Hordyk, a certiﬁed arborist of Arborwood Tree Service. The actual hand drawn 1781 map with the distance, a scale and signatures which accompanied the land deed has also been located.
The tree is over 125 years old and was planted around the year 1887 on the Bull Family property.
The Regal Heights neighborhood's first settler of the land was Bartholomew Bull from Tipperary, Ireland. He came to this area in 1818. Bartholomew bull founded the Davenport Road Methodist Church. This church started in his house in 1830 and was called "Springmount". The first school of the area was also founded in Bull's home.
The tree is located in the SW part of the neighborhood in the immediate vicinity of the Davenport Road. This road was originally part of the Aboriginal trail that followed the ancient Lake Iroquois shoreline from the Don River to the Humber River.
The Bull family were founders of the Earlscourt district and prominent residents of the Junction area of Toronto.
The Bull farm was not sold and subdivided until the early 1900s.
This significant White Oak is more than 250 years old with a circumference of close to 4.5 meters. The current owners of the house, the Kerteszs', bought the property back in 1954 because the couple loved the tree. The land has an interesting history having been owned by a succession of enterprising people over the years, including the Montgomery Family - of Mongomery's Inn in Etobicoke (who owned it around 1880). Around 1950, Edmund Peachey, a progressive builder who developed Chestnut Hills where the tree is located. Peachey may have been the first builder to use double paned windows and an experimental product called drywall. This was Peachey's first major project. He went on to become the award-winning developer of the builder of the iconic, modernistic and very successful Valhalla Inn. And now we come to today - The Kertesz couple. The late Fred Kertesz was an importer and one of his accounts was the Canadian importation of the internationally known PEZ candy. We are lucky that Tilllie and her late husband chose to purchase this property and have been such defenders of this remarkable tree.
- Southern Ontario, at one point in our history, was so heavily forested that it was said a squirrel could travel from Toronto to Niagara and never touch the ground. Most of these trees felt the bite of the axe - but especially so, the American Beech. There are accounts of valleys for as far as the eye could see populated by just American Beech. These were the prime locations for settlers to start farming since Beech thrived on fertile, agricultural soil. Wherever Beech plantations were found, they were quickly chopped down to make way for farming. That is why we find it quite miraculous that we can nominate this particular tree. Puslinch Township was no different than any other part of Ontario for its land clearing - by the 1930's Puslinch was bare of trees. This American Beech tree is on the 100 acres of land originally purchased in 1833 by the John McDiarmid family. The land was heavily forested but soon was cleared for farmland, with the timber used to construct a log cabin along with other farm buildings. In 1864, the log cabin was replaced for the present stone house. For some reason, this American Beech Tree was again spared and stands to the side of the stone house. Colonel John Bayne Maclean, founder of Maclean Publications, was born in the manse and spent his early childhood in the village Crieff just nearby the McDiarmid farm. As a successful businessman with an interest in his rural roots, Maclean returned to Puslinch by 1930, buying three 100 acre farm properties. One of these farms was the original McDiarmid farm. While still living and working in Toronto, these properties became Col Maclean's 'Crieff Farm' where he would spend most weekends. Col Maclean was an early pioneer of many new concepts, including conservation. When he noted 'the absence of beneficial bird life because the natural woodland habitat had long disappeared,' he began a large reforestation project. In 1950, upon the death of Colonel Maclean, 250 acres of 'The Crieff Farm' was left to the Presbyterian Church of Canada. This gift included the buildings one of which was the original McDiarmid House with this proud American Beech still standing guard on the front lawn. Colonel Maclean's Will, stipulated that this stone house was to be available for use by his secretary, Miss Dove for as long as she wished. Until 1983 Miss Dove made use of this home as her weekend and summer place of retreat. Miss Dove was an avid gardener, was president of the Toronto Horticultural Society and took great care of the area surrounding the house. No doubt guests coming from Toronto for formal teas on the front lawn would take shade under this beautiful American Beech tree. Now in 2016, this American Beech tree still stands at the corner of the House of Dove and is visited by many people coming to the National Presbyterian Retreat and Conference Centre. It will become part of the growing environmental stewardship program being shared with the public at Crieff Hills Retreat and Conference Centre. 'The tree that would stand.'
- This tree has been described as a white oak, approximately 250 to 300 years in age. The tree sits on a designated heritage site known as the Charles Smith House, built in 1828. Charles Smith had purchased 200 acres from the Crown in 1826. Nepean Bylaw 81-83: Statement of Reason for Designation- James Smith House The James Smith House built circa 1830 by a New England millwright is an excellent example of early rural vernacular architecture. The site, in the Village of Fallowfield, is on an escarpment known locally as Piety Hill and fronts onto one of the earliest settlement roads in Carleton County. The Charles Smith House was designated under the Ontario Heritage Act in 1983 by Nepean City Council. Steeple Hill Crescent is lined by many majestic oaks, perhaps nurtured from acorns from this one larger nominated tree. The street was at one time the main road for travel between Richmond and Bells Corners and then on to Bytown. The last known descendant of James Smith who occupied this property was Doctor S. L. Everett Danby. Articles found in the historical archives make mention that Dr. Danby buried his first two wives at the base of this oak tree. Neighbors have indicated that there once were two head stone markers on the site but they have long since crumbled and no evidence remains of them.
- The Royal Oak, Arnprior This oak tree was planted as a sapling by the 19 year old Prince of Wales, eldest son of Queen Victoria who later became Edward VII, on his tour to New York & Canada in 1860. After laying the cornerstone of the new Parliament Buildings in Bytown the Prince travelled by steamboat & birch bark canoe, part of a race, to Arnprior, known for its lumber industry. He lunched at the home of Daniel McLachlin, one of the lumber barons of the area, named "The Hill". This stone home is now the Galilee Centre. After "an elaborate Luncheon" the oak sapling, prepared by the head gardener, was planted overlooking Lac Des Chats, on the Ottawa River. An addition was made to the house in 1963 but the oak tree has been protected. An identifying plaque has been placed at the base of the tree.
- The Coutnac Beach community within Tiny Township of Simcoe County, Ontario, comprises 161 properties and seven (7) held in-common private park lands which are home to a large number of healthy and old growth mature Ash trees. Located on the north shore of the Outer Harbour of Penetanguishene Bay, Coutnac Beach resides in an area with a rich and steep history of the early settlement and defence of Canada. As early as AD 800, the Huron settled in semi-permanent villages in the area with the young French translator, Étienne Brûlé, being the first European to set foot in the Penetanguishene area, some time between 1610 and 1614. A historic naval establishment on the opposing shore to Coutnac Beach, followed, being constructed in 1817 by the British Navy after the War of 1812 to protect the Upper Great Lakes. Later, the area of Coutnac Beach was logged extensively with a large sawmill (the Penetang Mill - o/o Charles Beck) operating from 1873 to circa 1930. Coutnac Beach, started being developed in 1958 upon land purchased from the Roman Catholic Church parishioned by Monsignor Jean Castex at the time and as the first planned cottage community in Canada under the newly instated (at the time) Ontario Planning Act of 1960. The community has a unique and one-of-a-kind layout/plan in Canada with the common park lands providing residences unencumbered vistas and access to beaches and shores of Georgian Bay, and, also vast common lands for picnics and community social events such as the Coutnac Beach Property Owner's Association annual summer beach picnic. Nonetheless, we are very fortunate our community exists as one of two founding developers - Mr. Gerome Gignac, passed on in a tragic accident shortly into the development of our community, leaving the other partner - Mr. Wilfred Coutu (passed in 2015 at age of 94) to complete development of the community which is aptly named a portmanteau of the developers last names. Mr. Coutu overcame many challenges to develop our community, including one unique accomplishment in which he engineered and developed a barge-mounted, winch-operated scraper with a large bulldozer blade to clean and restore the beaches and near shore waters of Coutnac Beach of discarded stumps, off cuts and debris from former logging operations. Interestingly, during that process the bones and riggings of an entire equestrian logging team were found that had fell through the ice during the logging period of the 1800s. All the while, through the years, many Ash trees in Coutnac Beach have continued to stand tall for over an estimated 130 years being spared the loggers' axes and saws and land development operations. In fact the trees were saved by residing within the unique planned common park lands (noted earlier) not having to be removed for subdivision grading and road and home construction. Of significant note, we have nine (9) White Ash trees alone that have diameters at breast height (DBHs) and heights at over 60cm and 70 feet tall, respectively, and eighteen (18) more White Ash trees with over 50cm DBHs. It is these significant white ashes, growing in this arboreal remnant that are being recognized as Ontario Heritage Trees.
- Our first Remembrance Day was marked on November 11, 1919 to makr the end of World War I. As a commemorative gesture for 12 very young soldiers (ages 16-18) from the Lambton community who lost their lives in the war, 6 trees were to be planted in front of Lambton Park Community School. Royal Princes of England- Albert and Edward- were invited to plant these trees, however were unable attend, so it was decided that the mothers of the fallen soldiers would plant the trees. Reginald Gage was an uncles to a young girl named Bonita Nelson. Bonita's grandmother, Emily Gage, Reginald's mother was sick on planting day, so Bonita's mother ( Reginald's sister) stepped in and, helped with the planting. A plaque commemorating the 12 fallen soldiers where on display in the school foyer. In 1993, the school was torn down and rebuilt. During construction, Madeleine McDowell, a well-known historian, and school trustee at the time, was aware of the importance of the six trees out front of the school, so she made sure they were protected. On September 24, 2016, the school celebrated its 100th anniversary at which time these 6 trees were formally recognized Ontario Heritage Trees, and a delighted and proud Bonita Nelson was a guest of honour at the ceremony.