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Big Trees to Appreciate Around Minneapolis Metro

If you’re living in one of the MN new homes in the Metro area of the Twin Cities, you know that there are plenty of outdoor activities that are both fun and educational. If you’re looking for something a little different that offers a nice day out communing with nature, then consider visiting some of the members of the state’s Big Tree Registry. You’ll be surprised by the variety and amazed by the age and size of many of these impressive specimens and you may just feel a little bit calmer and happier at the end of your outing.

Theodore Wirth Park is a lovely park to visit, regardless of your interest in trees, but you’ll find that a truly impressive tree has been calling this area home for around 300 years. The Rockwood Oak is actually a bur oak tree. It gets its name from a former park board attorney. For roughly 300 years, this big tree has weathered time and storms along the western edge of Wirth Lake. The tornado in 2011 almost took out this old timer, but despite the many burls on its trunk, it continues to survive and thrive, impressing visitors of all ages.

While you’re at Theodore Wirth Park — which is full of some beautiful trees, both on and off the registry — don’t miss the mini grove of eastern hemlocks. One, in particular, is a state co-champion eastern hemlock. This particular giant is a 75-foot-tall tree with a circumference of 87 inches and is located south of the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden.

While many of the Big Trees are located in idyllic settings or private yards, some manage to claim their space, regardless of location. One such tree is the state champion of box elder trees. This 50-foot-tall tree calls a narrow band of grass on the edge of a parking lot home. If you’re interested in visiting, look for the northern edge of the University of Minnesota parking lot located at the intersection of Como Avenue and 29th Avenue Southeast in Minneapolis.

On a sloping hill in Windom Park, in northeast Minneapolis, you’ll find a beautiful American basswood tree. Located about 100 feet southwest of the park building, this tree has earned the designation of “heritage tree”, adding to its overhanging appeal.

Finally, on a warm summer’s day, what better tree to visit than a huge shade tree like the butternut at Roseville’s Reservoir Woods Park. Considered the state’s largest butternut tree, it has a circumference of more than 17 feet. Plus, it has a nice story of how it ended up on the Big Tree Registry. A group of fifth graders wanted this tree to gain its rightful place on the registry and submitted it in 2004. Approval was granted, and while the kids may be adults now, the tree is still going strong and serving up a nice place to spend some peaceful moments.

These are just a handful of some of the state’s truly big trees located in and around the Metro area. Getting outdoors in the fresh air is a great way to enjoy a peaceful day. Plus, tree huggers may be on to something. It’s said that hugging a tree releases oxytocin in the body, which helps reduce stress and increase happiness. By end of your outing, you’ll return to your MN new homes feeling refreshed and impressed, especially when it takes multiple family members to properly hug some of these giants.

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