Today Bart Bouricius, Ryan LeClair and I looked at a stand of tuliptrees that Ryan had scouted out growing near his home in Trumbull. The site is on the Pequonnock River in a park that runs along the river. It took only seconds to realize that the site offers feast of tall tuliptree. The spot looks more like Virginia than Connecticut. I spent my time identifying the tallest trees in the stand and measuring and remeasuring them. N room for error. We put a push pin in each measured tree.
I’ll get right to the numbers.
Tree # Height Girth
4 138.8 7.8
6 145.7 11.4
2 150.7 9.6
1 152.0 10.5
3 155.0 8.9
Number 3 becomes the LeClair TT, and at this pint, it is Connecticut’s tallest accurately measured tree. Obviously this tree is named in honor or Ryan who found it and shared it with us. Thanks Ryan. Let's now have a look at Ryan's tree.
After leaving the area Bart and I found another grove of TTs on Route 108. There are several over 11 feet in girth. I measured one at 11.3 feet around and 121 feet in height. There may be a 130 or two. Still later we measured a big TT in Farmington. Its stats are girth 13.5 feet and height 118.5.
We saw many TTs. Most of the tall ones are between 120 and 130 feet. There are definitely lots more places to search, but much of the landscape is boulder strewn with very thin soils - lots of TTs, but none of real significance. Ryan really has a special spot on the Pequonnock. There may be another 150 there, but not more. There are probably a couple more 140s in the small stand. The TTs on the opposite side of the river drop dramatically in height. They’re younger trees. The tallest is around 135 feet.
Bart and I stopped in Simsbury on our return trip to check on the great Pinchot sycamore. It took a big hit in the Oct snowstorm. But it will make it fine. It measures 28.0 feet in girth and the highest spot is 99.1 feet now. Its average crown spread has probably dropped to a little under 140 feet. Still a formidable tree.