The Victorian Tree of the Year winner is...the Lollipop tree (Monterey Pine, Pinus radiata) at the Parks Victoria Mount Beckworth Scenic Reserve receiving a convincing 351 of the total 830 votes.
Victorian Tree of the Year (2018)
The National Trust of Australia (Victoria) is the state’s leading advocate for the protection of trees, celebrating the benefits they provide to our communities.
The Victorian Tree of the Year contest aims to raise awareness for the conservation of Victoria’s natural heritage, and the benefits that significant trees provide. Since 1982 the Trust has classified over 20,000 trees in 1,200 places across the state on the National Trust Significant Tree Register.
The contest continues to follow in the footsteps of an immensely popular winner in 2016, the Kalatha Giant, a symbol of bushfire survival to the locals in Toolangi.
The Victorian Tree of the Year winner will be a tree that has captured the hearts of Victorians; it could have a dramatic history, or a majestic canopy; it doesn’t have to be the biggest or the oldest of its kind, just the tree we love the most.
This year’s Victorian Tree of the Year winner is a Monterey Pine (Pinus radiata) at Mount Beckworth Scenic Reserve, managed by Parks Victoria. The full results for each tree are outlined below.
2018 Victorian Tree of the Year nominations
The ‘Big Tree’ is a majestic mature River Red Gum (Eucalyptus camaldulensis), and is one of the largest in Victoria! Located in Guilford, the tree is well-known and its direction has been signposted on the Midlands Highway. It contains a small amount of deadwood and several cavities but is generally in excellent condition. The tree has a large natural branch graft on its northern side.
This Morton Bay fig (Ficus macrophylla) makes a significant contribution to the historic garden of Noorilim Homestead. It is of outstanding aesthetic significance with an almost perfectly symmetrical canopy and extensive exposed radial roots around the single trunk measuring 18m N-S and 17.5m E-W. These roots are greater than another other known fig in Victoria and is similar to how the species grows in the wild.
Now this is a big tree. This magnificent Mountain Ash (Eucalyptus regnans), known as the ‘Ada Tree’ is outstanding for its large height, trunk circumference, and canopy spread. It is 76 metres high, 15 metres round the truck, and more than 300 years old. Located in the Ada River Valley off the Federal track, the path to find the Ada Tree is via an enchanting rainforest gully full of mosses, ferns and gnarled myrtle beeches and sassafras. It’s definitely worth the walk!
This Cork oak (Quercus suber) is located in the Dunolly Railway Station, constructed in 1874 for the Victorian Railways by ST Weeks on the Donald-Ballarat line. It makes a significant contribution to the historic railway precinct. It is an outstanding specimen for its large height at 13m, impressive canopy spread of 22.5m and trunk circumference of 3.85m at 1m and 4.68m at 1.4m.
These two Weeping Scotch Elm (Ulmus glabra ‘Camperdownii’) located on Eureka Street, Ballarat are significant due to their large physical dimensions and are an outstanding, mature examples of the species. These trees are estimated to be over 95 years old, and given the location and attributes of the trees, they likely have a long life ahead of them. The grandeur of these trees make a significant impact upon the Eureka Street landscape and provide the immediate area with a great sense of scale.
This magnificent Monterey Cypress (Hesperocyparis macrocarpa) is located on the Hopetoun lawn in the Royal Botanic Gardens. It is thought to be comparable to the largest examples of the species in the world, with a stretching canopy spread of 26-31m, a height of 33.9 and girth of 11.7m. Truly an awesome tree.
Located in the Mount Beckworth Scenic Reserve, and affectionately known as the "Lollipop Tree", this Monterey Pine (Pinus radiata) is a well-known landmark in the district as it can be seen from almost any direction for up to 50kms. Celebrating its centenary this year, the tree gets its unique lollipop shape following the removal of its lower branches during World War II when the site was used for bomb-aiming sorties by RAAF pilots based at the Ballarat aerodrome.
The Avenue of Honour, planted in 1920, consisted of fourteen Bunya Bunya Pine (Araucaria bidwillii) and was planted to commemorate World War I. The choice of species was actually quite for a commemorative planting as Australian natives are not commonly used. There are no other Avenues of Honour which use this species on the National Trust Register.