Tree Trails in Union County Parks

Visit the Tree Trails to learn more about the ecosystems in Union County parks. Tree Trails are paved pathways that meander past distinctive trees, which have been marked with green and white identification tags. A QR code on each tag provides more details.

Master Tree Steward volunteers created the Tree Trails in Union County parks, including this one at Oak Ridge Park, in Clark.

The Tree Trails in Union County parks were created by the Master Tree Stewards of Union County, a community volunteer program run by the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County with support from the Commissioner Board.

Any Union County resident can apply to become a Master Tree Steward volunteer. For more information call Union County 4-H Agent Jim Nichnadowicz at 908-654-9854 (ext. 3) or email

Tree trails can be found in the following Union County parks (visit for a complete list of all Union County parks with maps):

  • Oak Ridge Park in Clark (trail starts near the east end of the parking lot)
  • Briant Park in Summit
  • Cedar Brook in Plainfield
  • Conant Park in Hillside
  • Echo Lake Park in Mountainside
  • Echo Lake Extension (trail starts behind the Mountainside municipal building)
  • Meisel Park in Springfield
  • Nomahegan Park in Cranford
  • Phil Rizzuto Park in Elizabeth
  • Rahway River Park in Rahway
  • Sensory Friendly Trail in Mountainside
  • Warinanco Park in Elizabeth

A Master Tree Stewards video about distinctive trees in Fanwood can be viewed on YouTube at

Trees play an essential role in the ecosystem of our parks and in the quality of life in our neighborhoods.

  • Removing tons of pollution from the air each year 
  • Combating climate change by removing carbon dioxide
  • Lowering electric bills up to 50% by providing shade
  • Reducing the heat-island effect 
  • Preventing, flooding, erosion, and water pollution 
  • Filtering groundwater by absorbing nutrients and toxins 
  • Providing wildlife habitat 
  • Unifying communities around natural landmarks 
  • Potentially increasing property values up to 15% 
  • Slowing water evaporation through shading
  • Creating aesthetic screens and sound barriers
  • Increasing patronage for local businesses 
  • Marking historical and cultural events 
  • Making memories: backyard swings, climbing, hide-and-seek games, picnics and more

Notable Trees of Union County

The following chart was created by Master Tree Steward Dean Talcott. It includes distinctive trees located in public parks and other properties open to public view. This chart was created in 2019 and may not reflect tree loss due to storm damage, old age and other circumstances.

For more details about notable trees in New Jersey visit the Big and Heritage Tree database of the New Jersey Forest Service at

Click here for mobile version of the charts.

Latin NameCommon NameTotal pointsUnion Co. RankN.J.
Circum. (inches)Height (feet)Crown (feet)Location
Acer palmatumJapanese Maple (Red)20311134
@ 2’
5748Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Acer rubrumRed Maple216121257467.5Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Acer platanoidesNorway Maple16312856647Fanwood Borough Hall
150238060401st  Presbyterian Church, Elizabeth
Norway ‘Crimson King’ Maple16511886452
11722683845Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Acer saccharinumSilver Maple285121947754Lincoln Ave. East, Cranford
Acer saccharumSugar Maple263151549076Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit
Aesculus flavaYellow Buckeye246111468754Liberty Hall, Union
Aesculus hippocastanumAmerican Horsechestnut250111795563
17523927532.5Fanwood Borough Hall
14835835542Liberty Hall, Union
Carpinus betulusEuropean Hornbeam9312464123Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Carya cordiformisBitternut Hickory18211907664Meisel Ave. Park, Springfield
Carya glabraPignut Hickory19912889853.5Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Catalpa speciosaNorthern Catalpa205131069035Kent Place Blvd., Summit
Cedrus atlanticaBlue Atlas Cedar1891 (tie)2 (tie)1066955Evergreen School, Plainfield
Cedrus atlanticaBlue Atlas Cedar1891 (tie)2 (tie)1155578Oak Ridge Park, Clark
Chamaecyparis lawsonianaFalsecypress17311887636Fairview Cemetery.
Chamaecyparis obtusaHinoki Falsecypress12311655031.5
Chamaecyparis pisiferaSawara Falsecypress248111487843.5
Cercidiphullum japonicumKatsura Tree16612906641.5Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit
@ 2’
3635Sandmeier School, Springfield
Cladrastis kentuckeaYellowwood6011272725.5Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Fagus grandifoliaAmerican Beech254141349696Echo Lake Park, Mountainside
Fagus sylvaticaEuropean Beech33311199107107Liberty Hall, Union
320232098894Echo Lake Park, Mountainside
287461729482Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit
270571777381Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
2496815280701st  Presbyterian Church, Elizabeth
Fraxinus americanaWhite Ash3151218510599Summit Village Green
301231859775Oak Ridge Park, Clark
278351689078.5Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Fraxinus pennsylvanicaGreen Ash2611212312070.51st  Presbyterian Church, Elizabeth
Gleditsia trichanthosHoney Locust2631214110472Fanwood Borough Hall
18723977462Warinanco Park, Elizabeth
Gleditsia trichanthos inermisThornless Honey Locust257111538864
18222986769Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Gymnocladus diolcusKentucky Coffee Tree211121069058Liberty Hall, Union
Ilez opacaAmerican Holly13714725730Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Juglans nigraBlack Walnut2321411310266Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Juglans nigraBlack Walnut221251218080Woodland Rd., Fanwood
15323816433Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Liquidambar styracifluaSweetgum2921216810864Rahway River Park, Rahway (River Rd.)
2492313310062.5McConnell Park, Cranford
2333411310271.5Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Liriodendron tulipiferaTuliptree3331420610586McConnell Park, Cranford
281211140122751st  Presbyterian Church, Elizabeth
228231407361Caldwell Parsonage, Union
Magnolia grandifloraSouthern Magnolia12611684934Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Magnolia grandifloraSouthern Magnolia9322503626Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit
Magnolia stellataStar Magnolia228111773950Cedar Brook Park, Plainfield
222221565544Liberty Hall, Union
Magnolia x soulangianaSaucer Magnolia140111102232Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Magnolia virginianaSweetbay Magnolia12611803736.5Warinanco Park, Elizabeth
Metasequoia glyptostroboidesDawn Redwood205139410237.5Briant Park, Summit
17124877441Fanwood Borough Hall
Morus albaWhite Mulberry15511984645.5Trailside Museum
Nyssa sylvaticaBlack Gum2821214511588Hanson Park, Cranford
Oxydendrum arboreumSourwood9212444031.5Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit
Paulownia tomentosaEmpress Tree257121578657Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Picea pungens glaucaColorado Blue Spruce13711646915Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Pinus densiflora “Umbraculfera”Tanyosho Red Pine170111114938
Pinus strobusEastern White Pine232141309046Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Pinus sylvestrisScotch Pine10711663524.5
Pinus thunbergiiJapanese Black Pine161111005141.5
228341328161Mindowaskin Park, Westfield
Platanus occidentalisSycamore298191809974Echo Lake Park, Mountainside
Prunus aviumSweet Cherry15211756738
Prunus serotinaBlack Cherry2991119095561st  Presbyterian Church, Elizabeth
Pseudotsuga menziesiiDouglas Fir8712404221Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Pyrus calleranaCallery Rear16511976030Fanwood Borough Hall
Quercus albaWhite Oak2921 (tie)15 (tie)16698111Kean University, Union
2822181769063.5Passaic St., New Providence
Quercus bicolorSwamp White Oak31612182103123Lenape Park, Westfield
278231718491Kawameeh Park, Union
2643415385102Kean University, Union
235451338279Hehnly School, Clark
Quercus coccineaScarlet Oak2821315410497Cedar Brook Park, Plainfield
2442412410272.5Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
239351229683Briant Park, Summit
Quercus macrocarpaBur Oak2911116310591Cleveland Plaza, Cranford
Quercus palustrisPin Oak3181119796101New England Dr., Westfield
3092318210876Hannah Caldwell School, Union
2943516111091Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
275461599680Oak Ridge Park, Clark
Quercus phellosWillow Oak18113927458.5Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Quercus rubraNorthern Red Oak345132339189Summit Ave., Summit
3332420011476Unami Park, Garwood
3313520211557Warinanco Park, Elizabeth
3254719510889Tamaques Park, Westfield
3185921380101Echo Lake Park, Mountainside
Quercus rubraNorthern Red Oak294610166108801st  Presbyterian Church, Elizabeth
2867111808583Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
27381215210274Mindowaskin Park, Westfield
Quercus velutinaBlack Oak290131917694Union Municipal Bldg.
Quercus velutinaBlack Oak2692414210780LaGrande Park, Fanwood
256351399684.5Briant Pak, Summit
Sassafras albidumSassafras256121746953Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Sophora japonicaJapanese Pagoda Tree201111008371
Taxus x mediaYew183121244842Liberty Hall, Union
Thuga occidentalisAmerican Arborvitae167121144628Oak Ridge Park, Clark
Tilia americanaAmerican Linden17814996556Fanwood Borough Hall
Tilia cordataLittle Leaf Linden187121066469Rahway River Park, Rahway
178231095650Oak Ridge Park, Clark
15534796447Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Tilia x euchloraCrimean Linden224111376870
Tsuga canadensisEastern Hemlock16913946445.5
Ulmus americanaAmerican Elm2061612259100Cedar Brook Park, Plainfield
Ulmus parvifolia “Alee”Chinese Elm5711262621Fairview Cemetery, Westfield
Zelkova serrataJapanese Zelkova15812866046Baker Ave., Westfield
13323813950Hurden-Looker Elem.
School, Hillside
The point grading method is per the NJ Forest service.

Union County residents can help educate the public on tree conservation, by joining the Master Tree Stewards volunteer program. No experience is needed. Tree Steward volunteers are trained by experts from the Rutgers New Jersey Agriculture Experiment Station.

For more information about the Tree Stewards program, and to obtain an application form, click here.

One person can make a difference!

Union County resident Dean Talcott has been a Master Tree Steward since 2003. In that time he has: Recruited and mentored many new Tree Stewards; taught approximately 200 4th grade classroom lessons on trees (about 5,000 students); organized the creation of educational “Tree Trails” in Union County parks; made two educational films about trees in Union County; staffed the Master Tree Steward tree display at many public events and environmental fairs…and much, much more!

Join Dean and the Master Tree Stewards to share the wonders of trees with the Union County community, and beyond.