Learn about all the Colorado Tree Coalition programs with this narrated PowerPoint presentation created by Susan Hardin.
Colorado Tree Coalition CommuniTree Awards Program
“One tree at a time”
The purpose of the CommuniTree Awards Program is to recognize individuals and organizations that epito- mize the mission of the Colorado Tree Coalition through their efforts to ‘preserve, renew and enhance Colo- rado’s urban and community forests’. There are three categories of recognition:
⇒ Distinguished Service Awards are given to recognize a professional community forester and a citizen vol- unteer that have contributed to the health and sustainability of Colorado’s community forests.
⇒ Sustainable Urban Forestry Award is given to an individual, business or organization that has fostered a change in our historical use and appreciation of the value of trees within our communities to create a more sustainable relationship to our urban forests.
⇒ Lifetime Achievement Award is given to recognize an individual whose lifetime of work has unfailingly served to preserve, renew and enhance community forests.
If you know someone you feel meets one of these categories and deserves to be recognized and honored for their efforts please nominate them. Read on for information on the nomination and award process.
- Identify a project, group or individual
- Submit a nomination with contact information for both the nominee and yourself
- Attach a detailed description of contributions, accomplishments & impacts
- Include supplemental information — photos, newspaper clippings, videos or other media
Eligible nominations must be involved in tree-related themes that focus on CTC’s mission statement: preserving, renewing and enhancing Colorado’s valued urban and community forests.
Make a Nomination
Nominations can be made by completing and submitting the form below. Please email your supplemental information to Karen Duez at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CTC Scholarship Program
The Colorado Tree Coalition (CTC) provides scholarships to eligible members of the CTC to promote its mission of preserving, renewing and enhancing community forests.
The Colorado Tree Coalition (CTC) has a limited amount of funds to assist people with registering to attend conferences and workshops throughout the year. Because of the limited dollars available, it is required of all who request assistance to follow these guidelines:
- Must be an individual, family, business/community, or patron CTC member in good standing. Memberships available at the CTC Store.
- Scholarship requests will be limited to a maximum of $300, and can only be applied to cover registration costs of the event.
- To request a scholarship submit the form on the CTC website. At a minimum, the request should contain the name and location of the conference and what is hoped to be learned at the event, how it will be applied in your current position, and how it benefits the mission of the CTC.
- Requests will also be limited to one person per community/group/organization per workshop or conference. Many workshops and conferences now offer concurrent sessions and there is a value to sending more than one person. However, the CTC will not be able to fund more than one person.
- Scholarship requests will be reviewed and approved by a majority vote of the Executive Committee of CTC.
- Those receiving scholarships will be required to supply an article or notes to be used in a CTC publication, social media and/or website and/or in another electronic newsletter format so others can benefit from the workshop as well.
The board of the CTC is committed to education and is seeking additional funds to the scholarship program so that it can be expanded and more people throughout Colorado can benefit from the various educational opportunities available.
Colorado Tree Coalition Tree Grant
Please note these important criteria for the grant program:
- The application is electronic. All applications are emailed: Vince.Urbina@ColoState.edu
- The maximum grant amount is $1,500.
- Grant recipients are eligible for grants every other year. Grants will not be awarded to applicants who won a grant the previous year.
- Applications from communities serving populations of less than 8,000 people will receive 5 extra points in our grant evaluation process.
- Applications that address emerald ash borer preparation, education or management will receive 5 extra points in the grant evaluation process.
- Applications that include a new or updated tree inventory that is uploaded to CO-TreeView (www.cotreeview.com) will receive 5 extra points in the grant evaluation process.
Colorado Tree Coalition Tree Grant Documents
- CTC Grant Cover Letter 2021
- CTC Grant Application 2021
- Sample Grant Application
- CTC Grant Writing Tips
Xcel Energy Vegetation Management Grant
Please note these important details of the grant program:
- The application is electronic. All applications are emailed: Vince.Urbina@ColoState.edu
- The maximum grant amount is $3,000.
- A cash match of 25% of the request is required.
Xcel Vegetation Management Grant
- CTC-Xcel Veg Mgmt Grant Cover Letter 2021
- CTC-Xcel Veg Mgmt Grant Application-2021
- 2015 CO Communities Served
- Xcel Right Tree Selection
Colorado Tree Coalition Grant Recipients
The Colorado Tree Coalition awarded nearly $51,698 to 21 organizations in 2018 thanks to funding from the USFS, CSFS, CTC, the Xcel Energy Foundation and the Xcel Energy Vegetation Management Program. Along with matching funds provided by the grant recipients, this will help plant more than 220 trees in communities across Colorado. Each of these projects allowed residents the opportunity to make a difference in their community with a combined total of 3,117 hours of volunteer service. CTC grants are made possible through the support of the USDA Forest Service, the Colorado State Forest Service, Xcel Energy Foundation, Xcel Energy Vegetation Management, Colorado Public Radio and our Colorado Tree Coalition members and supporters. Since 1991 the Colorado Tree Coalition has awarded 501 grants totaling over $844,000. These grants have been matched with over $7.8 million in community money and/or time. As a result of these grants over 74,110 trees have been planted throughout the state.
Since 2004, Xcel Energy Vegetation Management Program has provided nearly $27,000 for utility tree planting demonstration projects. Since 2011, the Xcel Energy Foundation has provided $150,000 in funded projects.
Regular CTC Grants ($28,898)
- Town of Monument
- Town of La Veta
- Grand Junction Forestry Board
- Butterfly Pavilion
- Highlands Ranch Metro District
- City of Monte Vista Tree Board
- Town of Mancos
- Fort Lewis College
- Town of Estes Park
- Fort Garland Museum
- South Suburban PRD
- PLAY Boulder Foundation
- Kersey Tree Board
- The Park People
- Rocky Ford Tree Board
Xcel Energy Vegetation Management ($3,000)
City of Alamosa
Xcel Energy Foundation ($18,000)
City of Golden
City of Boulder
City of Littleton
ReForest Colorado ($1,800)
Pikes Peak Justice Center
Since 2004, Xcel Energy Vegetation Management Program has provided over $34,000 for utility tree planting demonstration projects. Since 2011, the Xcel Energy Foundation has provided $200,000 in funded projects
CTC Grant Recipients
Grand Junction Parks and Recreation Department, Aquaponic Grow Beds – 2020
Pikes Peak Justice and Pro Bono Center of the El Paso County Bar Association, Waldo Canyon Fire Tree Planting Service Project -2018
The Institute for Environmental Solutions (IES) , Our Trees Make a Difference-Greenbelt Restoration and Environmental Education Network (GREEN)-2017
The City of Alamosa Parks & Recreation and Alamosa Tree Board , Our Trees Make a Difference-Let’s Maintain Them Properly Project-2017
Yampa Valley Sustainability Council, ReTree Steamboat Project–2017
Needham Elementary School, “Trees are the Answer!” Project–2016
Fort Garland and Revitalization Committee, Tree Replacement and maintenance on Blanca/Fort Garland Cemetery Project–2016
City of Brighton, Tree City USA 30 year Anniversary/ Arbor Day Celebration–2016
Colorado has many large and beautiful trees and The CTC Champion Tree Program maintains records of the largest trees in the state. Each year we accept nominations from rural and urban areas all over the state. The annual deadline is December 1st, and after that the search begins again for even bigger trees.
You don’t need to be an expert or a forester to nominate a tree. If you know of a large tree you’d like to nominate, use the links below for more information on how to measure and nominate a tree.
Colorado State Tree — Colorado Blue Spruce
Currently Colorado has 4 first place state and national champion blue spruces (Picea pungens). Three are in La Plata County about 5 miles northwest of Hermosa, and one outside of Sawpit, Colorado. The tree scores are 323.65, 323.71, 319.62, and 315.23 points, The tallest is 180′, followed by 166′, 156′ and 154′, they are listed on the champion tree list.
The Colorado Tree Coalition Champion Tree Program maintains a database with records of over 700 trees. Trees are listed in the registry by their common names. The listing only includes the general location of the tree. Contact the Colorado Tree Coalition for specific information.
See the nine Colorado trees listed on the American Forests Register of Big Tree in the sidebar on this page.
National Champion Cottonwood Tree has died:
This stately tree, estimated to be over 145 years old, 105 feet tall and 11.5′ feet in diameter, has recently met its demise. Read here to find out how they are honoring this large cottonwood.
Our National Champions
The state of Colorado has nine (9) National Champion Trees, Visit the American Forests Register of National Big Trees for more information. Colorado’s two National champion trees are listed on the on the sidebar to the right.
Nominating a Potential Champion Tree The annual deadline for nominations is December 1. All tree owners must be contacted, and all nominations must be verified prior to nomination submission. Click on the map below to locate the Colorado State Forest Service forester in your area to verify your nomination.
Complete a nomination form and submit it to CTC:
Make sure to fill in the following information:
- Tree identification Identify the tree with both common and scientific name, including genus, species and variety or cultivar designation (if known).
- Tree measurement Take the circumference at 4.5 feet above ground level (in inches), the total height (in feet) and average crown spread (in feet.) For more information, see How to Measure a Tree.
- Exact location of treeIn urban areas, include the street address and the location of the tree on the property (backyard, street tree, etc.). In rural areas, include specific directions to the tree, GPS coordinates and location in reference to any highways, trails, campgrounds or geographic features. For all trees, include the county name and nearest municipality. All trees must include a detailed map with specific tree location marked.
- Photographs All nominations must include a color photograph of the tree. Try to place an item (camera case, etc.) next to the trunk as a reference for size. Digital image files of 100k or less may be emailed to Neil Bamesberger. By submitting photos you grant the Colorado Tree Coalition permission to post the images on the CTC website.
- Other information Names and addresses of nominator, owner, verifier, date of measurement, comments on the tree’s condition and any other relevant information known.
Your nomination will be reviewed after the annual deadline. If your tree’s total points tops the current champ tree for a particular species (according to the American Forests formula), you will receive champion tree certificate. If the tree is not the largest, but makes second or third place, the champion tree list will reflect those changes and be kept on file. If the tree is a national champion candidate, your nomination will be forwarded to American Forests for consideration the following spring.
State champion trees should be checked and re-measured at least every 10 years. If you’re re-measuring a tree, please send an email to Neal Bamesberger at email@example.com, listing the exact location of the tree, the new (verified) measurements and any other new information about the tree’s condition, owners, etc.
How to Measure a Tree
- Using a flexible tape measure, measure the distance around the trunk of the tree to the nearest inch. This measurement should be taken at 4.5 feet above ground level.
- If the tree is on a slope, use the mid-point of the tree base and measure the circumference at 4.5 feet above ground level. If the trunk is leaning take the measurement perpendicular to the trunk.
- If there is a branch or growth on the trunk at or below 4.5 feet, measure the circumference at the narrowest part of the trunk and report the height at which the measurement was taken.
- To determine if the tree is a multi-stem form or not, use the pith test. Visualize lines through the center of each of the stems. If they intersect above the root collar or ground level, it would be considered a single trunk tree. Report the height at which the measurement was taken.
- If the pith lines intersect below the root collar, then it would be considered a multi-stem tree and only the circumference of the largest stem can be used.
Height Measurement To measure a tree’s height, an Abney hand level, clinometer, or laser rangefinder is recommended. If none of these are available, you can estimate the height using a straight stick cut to the exact length of your arm. Walk away from the tree to a point where, by holding the stick vertically at arm’s length, the entire tree’s vertical center line is hidden behind the stick. This method works best when you are at the same elevation as the base of the tree. Measure the distance to the base of the tree — this distance will be approximately the same as the tree’s height
Crown Spread Measurement Measure both the widest spread of the crown and the narrowest spread of the crown. Add the two measurements together, and divide by two to obtain the average crown spread.
Total Point Value The Colorado Tree Coalition will calculate the official Total Points for each nominated tree.
The total point value for a tree, according to American Forests, is calculated as follows:
Circumference (in inches)
+ Height (in feet)
+ 1/4 Average Crown Spread (in feet)
= Total Points
List of Verifiers
All new nominations must be verified prior to submittal of the form. Visit the Colorado State Forest Service’s website for the forester in your area to verify your nomination, or contact your city forester.
National Champion Trees in Colorado
Colorado is proud to have seven trees on the American Forests Register of Big Trees
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The CTC Risk Management Program was created specifically for managers of large tree populations in urban and community settings. Using universally identified indicators such as target, defect, failure potential and species, this program can be modified with local concerns to prioritize trees needing individual assessment. The use of this program is not intended to determine which tree within a group will fail first, but to give the organization or community managing these trees a method to start their tree risk management program.
To request the tree risk management forms please contact Vince Urbina at Vince.Urbina@colostate.edu
Tree managers can’t plead ignorant when a tree failure causes property damage or personal injury.
Every tree will fail if exposed to the proper conditions!
A notable tree is one that is remarkable or distinguishable in some way, or related to a famous or historical person, place or event. A tree may also be notable if the surrounding community accepts it as being specially based on its species, uniqueness, or contribution to the community. Many of the trees in these tours are notable because they are among the largest of their species in Colorado and are called Champion Trees.
Notable Tree Tours
The CTC Tree Finder app is here!!
Many notable and champion tree locations in Colorado are now accessible on your smart phone. You can download the app for free by going to the Google Play store for android, or the Apple app store for iPhone. Just type in “CTC tree finder” or “CTC treefinder” (with no spaces) and download it for free. It should work on the i-pad as well.
- For both apps you should be able to pinch and drag with your fingers to zoom in and out of the map.
- Push on each tree icon to get details of the notable and champion trees
- You can select “satellite” if you prefer to view the map in the “real world”
- You can select how many miles you would like to see trees based on your location under “settings” when you open the map
Please remember this is the very first trial run of the app and there will surely be bugs/glitches that need to be worked out over time. We are already working on version 2.0 where we will add a “search” feature for specific species of trees, and add picture to each point/tree.
Please do not hesitate to express your opinions and thoughts on how we can improve this app for the future. We hope this turns out to be a fun and informative tool for the CTC for many years.
Becky Wegner received a Colorado Tree Coalition 2018 CommuniTree Award
Peter Schertz received a Colorado Tree Coalition 2017 CommuniTree Award
Tim Buchanan received a Colorado Tree Coalition 2017 CommuniTree Award
Scott Grimes received a Colorado Tree Coalition Lifetime Achievement Award-2016
Donna Davis, Kyle Sylvester, and Doug Schoch received a Colorado Tree Coalition Distinguished Service Award-2016
Ralph Zentz received a Colorado Tree Coalition Distinguished Service Award-2016
Toni Evans received a Colorado Tree Coalition Distinguished Service Award-2016
Trees Across Colorado (TAC), a program of The Colorado Tree Coalition, provided shade trees for the twelfth year to communities to involve volunteers in tree planting this past April. Communities that participate in TAC have the opportunity for outreach with information about the benefits of trees, good species selection and proper tree planting and maintenance practices.
This year, in spite of the recession and budget cut backs, twelve communities picked up almost 700 shade trees on Tuesday April 15th, including bare root, balled and burlaped and container trees grown in a patented root-pruning pot. The groups came to Windsor, Arvada or Littleton to get their trees. The groups from Colorado Springs took their trees home from Littleton in a U-Haul.
Many of the trees distributed through this program are low water-demand and, at 5-12 feet tall and 1 to 1.5 inches in caliper, are a good size for volunteers to plant. Low water demand trees offered this year included ‘Hot Wings’ Tatarian Maple, Skyline Honeylocust, Catalpa, Bur Oak, Goldenraintree and Turkish Filbert. Less common trees included Bigtooth Maple and Ginkgo. Organizers included city arborists, Tree Boards, and neighborhood organizations.
Trees Across Colorado continues to be a successful program in distributing low cost, high quality trees to communities and groups all over Colorado and has been a successful fundraiser for CTC as well, bringing in almost $7,000 in 2014, thanks to volunteer time contributed to the CTC! For information about the Trees Across Colorado program, please call CTC’s Trees Across Colorado Coordinator Gertie Grant at 303-744-3882 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information about the Trees Across Colorado program, please call CTC’s Trees Across Colorado Coordinator Gertie Grant at 303-744-3882, email her at email@example.com or see the documents below.
Trees Across Colorado
The Colorado Tree Coalition is a volunteer, non-profit organization whose mission is “leading statewide efforts to preserve, renew, and enhance community forests.” Part of meeting that mission includes assisting communities grow and enrich their community urban forestry programs.
The CTC does this by providing grant money that communities are able to apply for to complete planned projects. Donations from individuals corporations and philanthropic organizations to either the Colorado Tree Trust or the ReForest Colorado funds are directly used to provide these grants. For more information on each fund, please read below.
Colorado Tree Trust:
The Colorado Tree Trust was created in March 1998 to endow the Colorado Tree Coalition and assure the future success of our grants program and other focus areas. A percentage of all memberships and merchandise sales are dedicated to the Trust. The Colorado Tree Trust grows through the financial gifts of individuals, corporations and philanthropic organizations.
In 2002, Colorado experienced its most severe drought in more than 300 years, triggering the most destructive wildfire season in the state’s history. The 137,760-acre Hayman fire demolished hundreds of structures and killed thousands of trees. To help reforest areas devastated by the Hayman and other fires that year, the Colorado Department of Natural Resources, the Colorado State Forest Service and Shell Oil Company pooled funds to help replant trees in wildfire-affected areas, helping Colorado communities replant more than 41,000 trees in 2003 alone.
Since then, the program has come to be known as “Reforest Colorado,” and has been expanded to help community forests recover from all kinds of natural disasters, including wildfires, storms, floods, drought and insect/disease epidemics. In recent years, Reforest funds distributed by the Colorado Tree Coalition have helped the Town of Lyons recover from the devastating 2013 floods and have helped restore the forests of Cañon City following the 3,800-acre Royal Gorge fire.
While reestablishing housing is always a priority following a natural disaster, rebuilding a feeling of community is equally vital to a city’s full recovery. Tree planting is an important part of this restoration process, helping communities to restore valuable green infrastructure and recreate welcoming community gathering spaces.
All contributions to the Reforest Colorado fund go directly to affected communities for new trees and planting-related expenses. Funds are managed under the direction of the Colorado Tree Coalition Executive Committee and Board of Directors. To donate to the fund, visit the “Donations” area on the Colorado Tree Coalition store page.
Need Help Recovering From a Disaster in Your Own Community?
Eligible applicants include state and local governments, school districts, community and neighborhood organizations, and private non-profit groups that have the ability to provide a 100% funding match in the form of private/public monetary and/or in-kind contributions.
To apply, please email your completed application form (Click here) along with any supporting documents to Colorado Tree Coalition Administrator Assistant at firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications are accepted year-round.
If your application is approved, funding will be set aside for the project and distributed to you once we receive your completed check request form (to be provided in your award packet).
An expense report detailing actual costs as well as additional documentation of your project’s success must be received within 30 days of project completion. Your contribution of this report – along with project photos, news clips, etc. – will preserve your eligibility status for future grant funding through the CTC. It will also help us to secure additional funding for the Reforest Colorado program through our outreach and marketing efforts.
Reforest Colorado grants are made possible by the support and funding of partners including Colorado Public Radio, Aspen Mortuary, BKI Woodworks, Peaks N Pines Brewing Company and individual donors and members of the Colorado Tree Coalition. Please highlight these organizations, along with the Colorado Tree Coalition, in your promotional materials.
Colorado State Forest Service- Grand Junction
The Tour de Poudre is a one-day bike ride, we offer 35 and 60 mile routes, you choose! The bike ride starts and finishes at Swingle Lawn, Tree and Landscape Care’s office in Fort Collins, Colorado. This ride will raise money for tree planting and tree research.
Tree loving cyclists enjoyed a beautiful fall ride October 8th, 2017 on the 18th annual CTC bike ride ‘Tour de Poudre’. A beautiful sunshine day with 46 riders that have pedaled 1,500 miles and raised a little over $ 4,000 for trees.
Thanks to donations, and our host sponsor Swingle Tree, a light breakfast, lunch and trail snacks kept the riders and volunteers nourished and refreshed. A special thanks to Scott Grimes who acquired a ‘Gambel Oak’ sponsorship of $500 from The Rocky Mountain Chapter of ISA , Phelan Gardens donated $250 and Little Valley Nursery $150 donations to help cover expenses.
Fort Collins Wholesale Nursery (FCWN) stepped up and provided trees for planting in Greeley, Windsor and at Odell Brewing in Fort Collins. Louis Linn and Ross Shrigley from FCWN even delivered and helped plant the Sensation Boxelder at Odell’s. Speaking of Odell’s, they were great hosts after the ride and treated all our riders and volunteers to a refreshing beverage. What’s better than bikes, beer and trees?
The support team was led by Jannieth Lewis who helped with all aspects of ride preparation and support. Other volunteers included CTC Board member Nancy Biekarck and her son Matt, as well as Alison O’Connor, Gertie Grant, Eric Dixon, Danielle Grimes and Susan Hardin. These folks really made a great impression on the riders with their encouragement, smiles and the award-winning banana bread Alison provided in Windsor. Fresh cookies from Susan Hardin were devoured by the riders upon their return to Fort Collins. Without the many volunteer hours these folks give we would not have this great fundraising ride. Thanks to all of you!
HUGE THANK YOU TO OUR 2018 SPONSORS!
Tour de Poudre
2017 Tour de Poudre Bike Ride
2016 Tour de Poudre Bike Ride
2015 Tour de Poudre Bike Ride
2014 Tour de Poudre Bike Ride
The 2018 theme is: Celebrate Trees in Our Community.
Colorado tree coalition sends 2018 ARBOR DAY POSTER CONTEST WINNER to the state capitol
Adelaide Krabbenhoeft, a fifth grader from Creativity Challenge Community School in Denver, CO was selected as the winner of the 2018 Colorado Arbor Day Poster Contest. Adelaide’s poster, in accordance with the contest selection criteria, depicted the importance of trees and a variety of ways they benefit our communities.
Adelaide’s poster was on display at the State Capitol from April 16th through April 23rd along with the posters of the other 26 state finalists. A panel of judges from the Colorado Tree Coalition (CTC) selected the winning poster from dozens of quality entries submitted by fifth-graders throughout Colorado.
Adelaide was recognized by the CTC and State Senator Irene Aguilar alongside her family and 5th grade art teacher, on Monday, April 23rd in a presentation at the display of the state finalists’ posters in the foyer of the State Capitol. Additionally, she was recognized on the floor of the Colorado House of Representatives by Representative Alec Garnett and enjoyed a tour of the Capitol.
The Colorado Arbor Day Poster Contest is sponsored by Arborscape Services, Denver’s “Be a Smart Ash” emerald ash borer campaign, the Colorado Tree Coalition and the Colorado State Forest Service.
Watch for 2019 Poster Contest information to come up soon!!!!
Colorado Arbor Day Poster Contest Past Winners
2018 Arbor Day Poster Contest Winner
Adelaide Krabbenhoeft-Creativity Challebge Community School
2015 Arbor Day Poster Contest Winner