It seems like it would be a lot of fun to feature a Big and/or Famous Alpharetta Tree on this blog from time to time. And there's no better place to start than with....
The Haynes Bridge Road White Oak
At 1950 Rock Mill Road, just off of Haynes Bridge Road and parallel to Georgia 400, on the property occupied by the Extended Stay America Hotel, grows a fine - and very old - white oak (Quercus alba). Most estimates place this oak at 250-300 years old. This may be Alpharetta's oldest tree. The estimated diameter is over 5 feet.
Google Earth historical imagery will show this oak quite apparent from satellite in a January 26, 1993 image. Looking at this image, one can imagine the dairy farm that Cousins Development had bought all those many years ago and that is the present day site of North Point Mall. The Haynes Bridge Oak stands to the northeast of the Mall and, as is the case with so many old trees, was probably a front or backyard fixture at some old home place in the distant past.
In 1996, the property on which the oak stands was up for re-zoning and the late Aubrey Morris wrote about it in the November 8, 1996 edition of The Revue and News. At that time the fate of the oak was uncertain, indeed, was in the hands of Alpharetta Mayor and Council. Then arborist Jennifer Teates and the Alpharetta Tree Commission may have had a role in saving it. I do not know. I do know that the oak survived and is still there today. Fewer and fewer people know about it, but I am here to tell you about it. It is magnificent.