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What Is the State Tree of Georgia? How Was It Decided?

University of Georgia

When traveling through Georgia, it’s easy to spot the state tree. Not only is it everywhere in the Peach State, but it’s also pictured on postcards, films, and online travel sites.

The state tree of Georgia is the stately, majestic live Oak tree. The tree was adopted as the state tree in 1937. For many residents and tourists of the South, the Oak tree is a symbol of southern hospitality, deep-seated history, and even the ghosts that are said to roam places like Savannah and Charleston, SC.

Have you ever wondered how it was decided to make the Live Oak tree the state tree of Georgia? We’ll answer that question and more in the article below.

trees & plants divider

What Is the State Tree of Georgia?

The state tree of Georgia is the Quercus Virginiana, better known as the Live Oak tree. The tree has held the title since 1937.

Sawtooth Oak Tree_Picmin_Shutterstock
Image Credit: Picmin, Shutterstock

How Did the Live Oak Become Georgia’s State Tree?

The Live Oak was officially declared the state tree because of a request from the Edmund Burke Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The tree can be seen flourishing on the islands where the settlers of Georgia first lived and along the coastal plains.

Does the State of Georgia Have a Nickname?

Georgia is also known as the Peach State for its abundance of delicious peaches. However, the state is also the country’s top producer of peanuts, Vidalia onions, and pecans as well. Vidalia onions are considered to be some of the sweetest tasting onions in the world.

Swamp White Oak Tree_Sean Attilio Learn_Shutterstock
Image Credit: Sean Attilio Learn, Shutterstock

Are Live Oaks Male or Female?

You might be interested to know that Live Oaks have male and female flowers on the same tree. In the end, the male flowers fertilize the females, and then the females turn into the acorns you often see scattered under the Oak tree in your backyard.

Areas Where Oak Trees Grow the Best

As the scientific name suggests, the trees can be found in Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Texas, and even Oklahoma. The Live Oak trees grow best in the shade and soils that are salty.

Shingle Oak Tree_Peter Turner Photography_Shutterstock
Image Credit: Peter Turner Photography, Shutterstock

Is It Illegal to Cut Down an Oak Tree in Georgia?

While it’s not illegal to cut down an Oak tree in Georgia, some cities protect the trees, meaning you’ll need a permit if you want to chop down a large one. It’s usually okay to trim or cut down the smaller Oak trees, but to be on the safe side, it’s best to check with your city hall first.

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Final Thoughts

The official state tree of Georgia is the Live Oak tree, and you can see the majestic tree anywhere you go in the state. Although Georgia is full of beautiful trees and plants, you’re unlikely to forget the mighty Live Oak and its towering presence.


Featured Image Credit: paulbr75, Pixabay

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