Virginia's Big Tree Program has an updated database, thanks to Virginia Tech's Department of Forestry. In the past, the big tree database was a table of the most common species of champion trees. The new database allows users to search under different conditions a vast library of 500 to 1,000 champion trees.

Champion trees can be found through various searches such as common name, Latin name, and county. An advanced search helps anyone to search nominators, height, or if the tree is still alive and standing. "Through this new method of searching we found 16 national champion tree contenders with ease" says Jeff Kirwan, associate forestry professor at Virginia Tech and one of the developers of the Virginia Big Tree Program.

Kirwan hopes the new big tree database will help people to re-measure trees and check that they are still standing in order to keep the Virginia Big Tree Program updated accurately.

The Virginia Big Tree Program website is at www. fw.vt.edu/4h/bigtree. A click on Virginia Big Tree list begins the search.

Written by Hilary Fussell, Public Affairs Assistant