Quercus alba L.

  • Family: Fagaceae (oaks and beeches)
  • Common name: white oak
  • Synonyms: no synonyms

    Tree to 25 m (80 ft) tall and 1 m (3 ft) diameter, with rounded crown. Bark light gray scaly plates and ridges. Twigs slender, gray, ending in a cluster of small eggshaped brown buds. Leaves alternate, elliptical, 5-9 lobed, tapering to base, 10-25 cm (4-10 in) long, dark green above, whitish below, turning red to brown in fall. Fruits are acorns maturing in the first year, 1-3 cm (0.4-1.2 in) long, with light gray cup covering about 1/4.

    Distribution: Native to about the eastern half of the United States.
    Habitat: well-drained bottomland forests, mesic upland forests.
    Comment: White oak is an important timber tree, furnishing high-quality wood for whiskey barrels and furniture. Quercus is the ancient classical name for the European oaks; alba means "white" and may refer to the pale bark.
    NWI status: FACU+

    Distribution in Oklahoma:

    Last update: 9/16/99
    Go to Oklahoma Biological Survey Home Page