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Oldest Tree In North Texas Falls During Heavy Storms

The famously old and large Bur Oak before it succumbed to the storm.
The Plano Bob Woodruff Park Quadricentennial Bur Oak was believed to be over 400 years old when it failed October 26, 2023.

Published October 31, 2023, By SHERAH JANAY NDJONGO

A tragic event unfolded in Bob Woodruff Park in North Texas last Wednesday as the Plano Quadri/Quincentennial Bur Oak, believed to be the region's largest and oldest tree, succumbed to powerful storms.

The tree's demise revealed a substantial decay in its trunk, and even the four bolts installed in earlier years couldn't save it from splitting.

The Plano Quadri/Quincentennial Bur Oak, acknowledged by the Texas Historic Tree Coalition, holds a remarkable history. Estimated to be over 400 years old, it soared to a towering height of 90 feet and had a substantial 16.25-foot circumference — a reminder of its extraordinary longevity.

To put this size into perspective, the largest known Bur Oak in Texas, the Texas State Champion, located in Cooke County, stands at 75 feet tall with a 22.4-foot circumference.

This tree's significance transcended its age and size. It was deeply intertwined with Plano's history, having witnessed a transformation of land ownership and uses over the years.

The dedication of previous landowners, such as the Land Family, who utilized the property's timber for their farm while preserving the bur oak, added to its historical importance in the area.

In 2002, the residents of Plano honored the tree during Arbor Day Celebration, recognizing its role as a living witness to the city's evolving history.

The Plano Quadri/Quincentennial Bur Oak may have fallen, but its legacy and the memories it holds endure.

About the author

Ms. Sherah Janay Ndjongo

Ms. Ndjongo is a reporter for 104.5 Latino Hits, a local radio station in San Antonio, Texas.

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