It’s not often that a single tree warrants the creation of an entire park, but the Angel Oak is no regular vegetable. This venerable giant sprouted before Columbus arrived to this New World. The City of Charleston in South Carolina acquired the property in 1991 and has since been protecting it through it’s public park.
Incredibly, it is not the trees’ age that makes it such a truly impressive feat.
The Angel Oak, with it’s massive labyrinthine limbs and wide spreading canopy, produces shade that covers 17,200 square feet (1,600 meter squared)! In this land of ancient giants, The Tree is a God amongst them.
Thick tangles of branches serpentine out from the enormous trunk, some even dipping below the earth and re-emerging several feet later. The single longest branch, from tip-to-tip is a mind-numbing 187ft!
The Angel Oak is a Southern LIVE oak (scientific name is Quercus Virginiana). It is a native species that grows throughout the Lowcountry (coastal Carolinas) on the eastern coast.
Despite its’ large aura, the Angel Oak actually derives its name from the estate of Justis and Martha Angel. Local folklore also tells stories of ghosts of former slaves appearing as angels around the tree.
There is no charge to visit the Angel Oak, but be aware the tree is not actually in Charleston. ‘The Tree’, as it is simply called here, is serenely tucked away amongst the woods of John’s Island, some 12 miles beyond the Ashley River.
Angel Oak Park
Hours 9-5 Mon- Sat, 1-5 Sunday
3688 Angel Oak Rd.
Johns Island, SC
~ An Extraordinary Story by Karina Noriega ~
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