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Sawtooth OakQuercus acutissima

  • Sawtooth Oak - Quercus acutissima
As one of the fastest growing trees in its youth, the Sawtooth Oak is an attractive shade tree with dark lustrous summer foliage and clear yellow to golden brown fall leaves. Adaptable to any soil condition except alkaline. One inch acorns are quite popular with wildlife. Grows 40'-60' with a 40' to 60' spread. (Zones 5-9)

Hardiness Zones

The sawtooth oak can be expected to grow in Hardiness Zones 5–9. View Map

Tree Type

Mature Size

The sawtooth oak grows to a height of 40–60' and a spread of 40–60' at maturity.

Growth Speed Medium to Fast Growth Rate

This tree grows at a medium to fast rate, with height increases of anywhere from 13" to more than 24" per year.

Sun Preference

Full sun is the ideal condition for this tree, meaning it should get at least six hours of direct, unfiltered sunlight each day.

Soil Preference

The sawtooth oak grows in acidic, loamy, moist, sandy, well-drained and clay soils. It has some drought tolerance.


This tree:
  • Transplants easily.
  • Features simple, obovate-oblong to oblong leaves that are 3½–7½" long with bristle-like teeth terminating the 12–16 parallel veins. They open a brilliant yellow to golden yellow color in the spring, turning dark lustrous green in summer and yellow to golden brown in the fall.
  • Produces slender golden catkins that are 3¬–4" long and typically appear with the emerging leaves in late march or early April.
  • Yields oval acorns that are 1" long and quite popular with wildlife.
  • Grows in a pyramidal shape that rounds out over time.

Wildlife Value

Sawtooth oaks produce acorns at a very young age, providing food for many kinds of wildlife, especially wild turkeys.


The native habitat of the sawtooth oak tree is Japan, Korea, China, and the Himalayan Mountain range. The tree was introduced to America in 1862. This oak probably derives its name from the distinctive sawtooth-edged leaves it produces.