A very large, slow growing tree. When grown in the open has rugged, irregular crowns that are wide spreading. In forests, crowns are upright and oval with trees reaching up to 80’. A member of the Beech Family, also known as the Stave Oak, Forkleaf Oak and Ridge White Oak. Acorns are preferred food for deer, bears, turkeys, squirrels and others. Native Americans used the acorns for bread making. Vessels in the wood are plugged with balloon like outgrowths (tyloses) that make it water-tight. This makes it valuable for whiskey and wine barrels and ship building. Keels of WWII Navy patrol boats were partially made with trees from Hyde Park. Historically known for manufacture of wagons, railroad ties and agricultural implements.
Oblong 4-7” long with 7-10, rounded lobes. Apex is rounded and base is wedged. Green above, paler below.
Whitish or ashy gray. On young trees seen in strips peeling from one side. Older trees present peeling ridges or blocks.
Red-brown to gray, even purple cast. Hairless and shiny, multiple terminal buds are red-brown, small, rounded.
Ovoid acorn with bowl-shaped warty cap covering ¼ of fruit. Cap detaches at maturity.
Species is unisexual – male flowers are yellow-green in 2-4” catkins. Female flowers are reddish-green single spikes, appearing with leaves in spring.