Oak, Northern Red Quercus rubra
Bristle-tipped leaves turn red in the fall. The leaves have 7 to 11 waxy lobes. A good street tree, tolerates pollution and compacted soil. Grows as much as two feet a year for 10 years. Grows to 60' to 75', 45' spread. (zones 3-8)Pricing Information
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Hardiness Zones 3 - 8The Northern Red Oak can be expected to grow in the zones shown in color in the arborday.org zone map. View Map
Type of treeShade Trees
Mature HeightThe Northern Red Oak grows to be 60' - 75' feet in height.
Mature SpreadThe Northern Red Oak has a spread of about 45' at full maturity.
SunThis oak does well in full sun.
SoilThe Northern Red Oak grows in acidic, drought tolerant, loamy, moist, sandy, well drained, clay soils.
ShapeThis oak has rounded shape.
The Red Oak is an American treasure, and one easy to own. One of its many special features is that it is easier than most trees to transplant and it can tolerate the conditions of cities and towns amazingly well. In parks, along streets and in home landscapes, the tree provides cool shade from its dense crown, brilliant fall colors and a high degree of safety thanks to the superior strength of its wood.
Bristle-tipped leaves turn red in the fall. The leaves have 7 to 11 waxy lobes. A good street tree, tolerates pollution and compacted soil. Grows as much as two feet a year for 10 years. Grows to 60' to 75', 45' spread. (zones 3-8)
Red oak acorns are at the top of the food preference list for blue jays, wild turkeys, squirrels, small rodents, whitetail deer, raccoons, and black bears. Deer also browse the buds and twigs in wintertime.
The Red Oak has been a favorite of both lumbermen and landscapers since colonial times. The tree has also found favor when transplanted in Europe. It is believed that Bishop Compton's garden, near Fulham in England, received the first Red Oak transplant abroad in the late 17th century. In 1924, there were over 450 acres of Red Oak plantations in Baden, Germany.
Normal moisture with some drought tolerance.
The leaves alternate, simple, 4 to 8 inches long with pointed, spine-tipped lobes. Dark green color turning russet-red to bright red in autumn.
Pale, yellow-green catkins appear at about the same time new foliage is expanding.
The Acorn is round, 3/4 to 1 inch long, flat, thick, saucer like cap, brown.
Rate of growth refers to the vertical increase in growth unless specified differently. Rate, as is true for size, is influenced by numerous variables such as soil, drainage, water, fertility, light, exposure, ad infinitum. The designation slow means the plant grows 12” or less per year; medium refers to 13 to 24” of growth per year; and fast to 25” or greater.Manual of Woody Landscape Plants, by Michael Dirr.