Top 9 Oldest Living Trees

Llangernyw Yew

Photo Credit: Emgaol/Wikimedia Commons 

This ancient yew is located on the churchyard of St. Digain’s Church in the village of Llangernyw, Conwy, North Wales. The tree is estimated to be over 4,500 years old, it is one of the 50 Great British Trees. The tree was planted in the prehistoric Bronze Age, so it is remarkable that to this day it is still growing.

Olive tree of Vouves

This olive tree in the village of Ano Vouves, Crete, Greece. Is likely one of the oldest olive trees in the world, it still produces olives today.

Photo Credit: Johan Wieland

The exact age of the tree cannot be determined. The use of radioisotopes is not possible, as its heartwood has been lost down the centuries,while tree ring analysis demonstrated the tree to be at least 2000 years old,and on the other end of the scale, scientists from the University of Crete have estimated it to be 4,000 years old.

Branches from the tree were used to weave victors’ wreaths for the winners of the 2004 Athens Olympics and the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

General Sherman

Photo Credit: Famartin/Wikimedia Commons

General Sherman is located in Sequoia National Park in California. By volume, it is the largest known living single stem tree on Earth. The General Sherman was named after the American Civil War general William Tecumseh Sherman, in 1879 by naturalist James Wolverton, who had served as a lieutenant in the 9th Indiana Cavalry under Sherman. It is believed to be around 2,500 years old.

Jōmon Sugi

Photo Credit: Chris 73/Wikimedia Commons

Jōmon Sugi is both the largest and oldest cryptomeria tree in Yakushima, Japan.

It is estimated to be between 2,170 and 7,200 years old. Other estimates of the tree’s age include “at least 5,000 years”,”more than 6,000 years”, and “up to 7,000 years old” making it potentially the oldest tree in the world.

The tree has a height of 25.3 m (83 ft) and a trunk circumference of 16.4 m (54 ft). It has a volume of approximately 300 m3 (11,000 cu ft), making it the largest conifer in Japan.



Photo Credit: Haplochromis/Wikimedia Commons

Alerce or Fitzroya cupressoides is a towering tree species native to the Andes Mountains. No one could determine how old these trees are. Many botanists believe they are the second-longest living trees on earth. They normally grow to 40–60 m, but occasionally more than 70 m in Argentina, and up to 5 m in trunk diameter.

The largest known living specimen is Alerce Milenario in Alerce Costero National Park, Chile. It is more than 60 m tall, with a trunk diameter of 4.26 m. Much larger specimens existed before the species was heavily logged in the 19th and 20th centuries; Charles Darwin reported finding a specimen 12.6 m in diameter.



Note this is not the Methuselah Tree, this is a similar tree in the area, to demonstrate what the tree might look like.
This Great Basin bristlecone pine known as the world’s oldest tree until 2012/2013, this 4,4848 year old tree still stands firmly in Inyo National Forest, California. Another bristlecone pine in the same area was discovered to be 5,066 years old. Both the pines’ exact locations are kept secret to protect them.


Hundred Horse Chestnut

Photo Credit: LuckyLisp/Wikimedia Commons

The largest and oldest known chestnut tree in the world. Guinness World Records has listed it for the record of “Greatest Tree Girth Ever”, noting that it had a circumference of 57.9 m (190 ft) when it was measured in 1780. Above-ground the tree has since split into multiple large trunks, but below-ground these trunks still share the same roots.

The tree’s name originated from a legend in which a queen of Aragon and her company of one hundred knights, during a trip to Mount Etna, were caught in a severe thunderstorm. The entire company is said to have taken shelter under the tree.

The tree is located just five miles away from active volcano Etna’s crater.



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