CRCCD – Pin Oak EcoR



Quercus palustris


Mature Height:  60 to 70 feet
Mature Width:  40 to 60 feet
Soil:  Acidic loam
Moisture:  Average to Wet
Light:  Full Sun
Landscape Value:  Great as a shade tree or street tree. Also supports a variety of wildlife, including birds, mammals, and pollinators like butterfly and moth caterpillars.

Fast-growing, slender deciduous tree with a broad pyramidal crown, straight trunk, and unique branching pattern.  Upper branches are ascending, middle branches are nearly horizontal, and lower branches are descending.  Glossy, dark green leaves have 5 bristle-tipped lobes with deeply cut, U-shaped sinuses (spaces between the lobes).  Foliage turns bronze-red in autumn and often persists through winter.  Smooth gray-brown bark usually develops ridges with age.  Yellowish-green flowers appear in mid-to-late spring on separate male and female catkins.  Female flowers give rise to small, rounded acorns (nuts) with shallow caps.  Abundant acorn crops may not occur until the tree reaches 20 years old.  Chlorosis (yellowing of leaves while veins remain green) is common in alkaline soils and can kill the tree.   Tolerates heat, air pollution, poorly-drained soil, and some flooding during the dormant season.  Acorns attract many songbirds, ground birds, water birds, and mammals.  Leaves are a food source for dozens of butterfly and moth caterpillars as well as leaf beetles, treehoppers, leafhoppers, and gall wasp larvae that produce galls on leaves and twigs.  Caterpillars supported by the trees are also an important food source for birds, especially when adults are feeding their nestlings. Larval host to Gray Hairstreak butterflies.

2 gallon pot, 2-3 feet tall

Photo credits:
Lady Bird Wildflower Center (photo by Norman Flaigg)
Missouri Botanical Garden
Native Plant Trust (photos by Glenn Dreyer, Arieh Tal)