Champion Tree Trail

Follow our Champion Tree Trail to find out more about some of the record-holding plants in our Living Collection!

The gardens at Mount Stuart were first planted 300 years ago with many successive plantings over the proceeding years. We currently have 14 National Champion trees at Mount Stuart and a further 66  Scottish and Argyll & Bute champions

Our Champions were first measured by Dr Owen Johnson of the Tree Register of the British Isles in 2007 and an update was completed in 2016 with Charles Henderson from TROBI.

Some of the areas where our Champion Trees live can get muddy so make sure you’re wearing suitable footwear!

Corsican Pine

An evergreen conifer from the Mediterranean region and North Africa the Corsican Pine or Pinus nigra ssp laricio grows to around 50m and can live for centuries. This tree is often grown commercially for timber. Our specimen is 46.5m in height and was planted around 1864.

Nootka Cypress

An evergreen conifer from western north America the Nootka Cypress or Xanthocyparis nootkatensis can reach around 30m in the wild and can live for thousands of years. The timber from this tree is durable and valuable for boat building and other outdoor construction. Our specimen is 34.8m high and was planted around 1864.

Image Credit: Charles Henderson

Japanese Yew

An evergreen conifer similar to our native yew Taxus cuspidata hales from Japan and the neighbouring Asian continent. This yew can grow to around 18m high with a potential girth of around 60cm diameter in its native habitat. The timber is used for furniture, carving and wood turning. The Mount Stuart specimen is 12.4m high and a girth of 2.2m.

Image Credit: Charles Henderson

Japanese Yew

An evergreen conifer similar to our native yew Taxus cuspidata hales from Japan and the neighbouring Asian continent. This yew can grow to around 18m high with a potential girth of around 60cm diameter in its native habitat. The timber is used for furniture, carving and wood turning. The Mount Stuart specimen is 12.4m high and a girth of 2.2m.

Image Credit: Charles Henderson

Rhododendron falconeri

An evergreen flowering shrub from the Eastern Himalayas, Rhododendron falconeri can reach 15m in the wild. This tree produces creamy yellow-white flowers in April. The beautiful orange brown covering of felt like hairs on the back of the leaves is called indumentum which helps the leaves control water loss and surface temperature. Our plant is 10.6m high and has a girth of 1.59m

Rhododendron falconeri

An evergreen flowering shrub from the Eastern Himalayas, Rhododendron falconeri can reach 15m in the wild. This tree produces creamy yellow-white flowers in April. The beautiful orange brown covering of felt like hairs on the back of the leaves is called indumentum which helps the leaves control water loss and surface temperature. Our plant is 10.6m high and has a girth of 1.59m

Hoheria glabra

A deciduous flowering tree from New Zealand Hoheria glabra can reach 10m in height. Its scented white flowers bloom in June and July. Our plant is 8.6m high and has a girth of 1.4m

Hoheria glabra

A deciduous flowering tree from New Zealand Hoheria glabra can reach 10m in height. Its scented white flowers bloom in June and July. Our plant is 8.6m high and has a girth of 1.4m

Hoheria glabra

A deciduous flowering tree from New Zealand Hoheria glabra can reach 10m in height. Its scented white flowers bloom in June and July. Our plant is 8.6m high and has a girth of 1.4m

Rhododendron arboreum alba

An evergreen flowering shrub from the Himalayas, China and India the Rhododendron arboreum alba can grow to around 12m high. White flowers are produced through March to April. The flowers can be used for jams, jellies and for brewing wine. The Mount Stuart specimen is 10.8m high and has a girth of 2.7m and was possibly planted as far back as 1863. There are pictures of this plant when the current Mount Stuart was being built already looking around 20 years old!

Image Credit: Charlotte Hems Rogers

Great White Rhododendron

The Great White Rhododendron or Rhododendron decorum is an evergreen flowering shrub from China and Myanmar. These trees can grow to 6m in height and produce fragrant white flowers in June and July. Our plant is 5.80m high and has a girth of 2.63m.

Image Credit: Charlotte Hems Rogers

Sargent’s Rowan

The Sargent’s Rowan or Sorbus sargentiana is a deciduous tree from China growing to 16m high which produces white flowers in May and red berries in autumn along with firey autumn leaves. Our plant is 9.6m high and has a girth of 1.25m

Tineo

This evergreen flowering tree, Weinmannia trichosperma, is native to Chile and Argentina. Growing to 30m high, panicles of fragrant white flowers are produced in May followed by coppery red seed heads. Grown in its native habitat bees produce a beautiful tasting honey from the flowers. Our tree is 8.8m tall and has a girth of 1.14m

Snowy Rhododendron

The Snowy Rhododendron or Rhododendron niveum is an Evergreen flowering shrub from India, Bhutan and China. Growing to 6m high, flowers are produced during April and are a deep magenta on opening fading to a creamy white over time. It is the state flower for the Sikkim region of India. Our plant is 11.5m high and has a girth of 1.05m

Lingue

Persea lingue is an Evergreen flowering tree from Chile and Argentina. Growing to a height of 25m the flowers are small and yellow. This plant is related to the avocado and chemical compounds from the plant are being trialled to help in the fight against antibiotics resistance. Our specimen is  5.8m high with a girth of 0.72m.

Variegated Tarata

Pittosporum eugenioides ‘Variegatum’ or Variegated Tarata is an evergreen flowering shrub. A cultivated form of a New Zealand native it can achieve heights of up to 12m. One of its common names is ‘lemon wood’ as the crushed leaves have a strong scent of lemon. The very fragrant yellow flowers are produced during April and May. Our specimen is 10.8m high and has a girth of 1.42m.

Variegated Tarata

Pittosporum eugenioides ‘Variegatum’ or Variegated Tarata is an evergreen flowering shrub. A cultivated form of a New Zealand native it can achieve heights of up to 12m. One of its common names is ‘lemon wood’ as the crushed leaves have a strong scent of lemon. The very fragrant yellow flowers are produced during April and May. Our specimen is 10.8m high and has a girth of 1.42m.

Daisy Bush

Olearia paniculata is an Evergreen flowering shrub from New Zealand growing to 7.5m high. It has attractive pealing bark and fragrant Vanilla scented flowers which are produced in late autumn. Our plant is 12.8m high and has a girth of 3.28m.

Image Credit: Charles Henderson

Daisy Bush

Olearia paniculata is an Evergreen flowering shrub from New Zealand growing to 7.5m high. It has attractive pealing bark and fragrant Vanilla scented flowers which are produced in late autumn. Our plant is 12.8m high and has a girth of 3.28m.

Image Credit: Charles Henderson

Sitka Alder

The Sitka Alder or Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata is a deciduous tree from North America growing to 12m high. Bark from the tree was used by native peoples to make a red dye for wool and animal hide clothing. Alders are beneficial trees for sites with poor soils as the trees fix nitrogen from the air and store it in nodules in the roots. The Mount Stuart tree is 6.8m high and has a girth of 3m.

Image Credit: Charles Henderson

Sitka Alder

The Sitka Alder or Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata is a deciduous tree from North America growing to 12m high. Bark from the tree was used by native peoples to make a red dye for wool and animal hide clothing. Alders are beneficial trees for sites with poor soils as the trees fix nitrogen from the air and store it in nodules in the roots. The Mount Stuart tree is 6.8m high and has a girth of 3m.

Image Credit: Charles Henderson