The linden tree of Leliceni, a place in Harghita County (north-west of Bucharest), won the European Tree of the Year contest and got the award during a ceremony, part of a Green Week event, that was held at the central headquarters of the International Union for Conservation of Nature in Brussels, reads a press release issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The event occurred on May 25 in the context of the series of events devoted to the Environment Protection Week in Brussels, which is observed over May 24-27. The award the Harghita tree won consists in a trophy made by a Czech artist.
The linden tree of Leliceni was designated the European Tree of the Year in March after reaping the most numerous votes, over 20,000, during the European Tree of the Year contest, which was organized by the Czech Environmental Partnership Foundation. The linden tree of Leliceni competed against plane trees from Hungary and Bulgaria and oak trees from the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
This linden tree is 500 years old, 20 metres high and has a 390 centimetres circumference of its trunk. It was planted in the early 1500. The tree witnessed the Tartar invasion and other important events, surviving the natural disasters that marked the place. It also survived a terrible drought in 1717 and a terrible hail storm in 1854. This tree is an important symbol of the region. In 1992 it was declared a natural monument, according to the register of monuments in Harghita County.