The tree won’t develop strong roots in dry soil. You might think you are collecting a lot more than you need, but the germination rates for acorns is low, so you need lots of extras. Even then, only use fertilizer if the leaves are pale, or the tree is not growing as it should. View Map. Seeds can be collected after they fall to the ground. The leaves are handsome throughout the year, emerging pinkish-red, turning lustrous dark green in summer, and changing to russet-red to bright red in autumn. Northern red oak is the state tree of New Jersey. Find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: Keep up to date with all that's happening in and around the garden. It is common to find weevils in acorns and they can destroy the ability of the seed to germinate. The leaves of the Northern Red Oak are the classic oak leaf with multiple lobes and pointed ends. Northern Red Oak Trees are easy to grow and extremely adaptable. All you need is an acorn and a gallon (4 l.) pot filled with soil. Quercus rubra L.. Northern Red Oak. Seed collection: Northern red oak fruit is a nut commonly called an acorn. Northern Red Oak is a fast growing shade tree. Yes, you read that right—an oak that’s fast growing! How to Grow. Red Oak prefers moist, deep, rich, well-drained soils of slightly acidic pH. The lustrous dark green leaves in summer turn brilliant shades of bronze, red and maroon in the autumn. Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Dec 9, 2017 11:14 AM. The northern red oak ( Quercus rubra ) is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones 4 to 8 and reaches a height of 50 to 75 feet.The growth rate is moderate to fast, so expect them to grow taller by an average of 24 inches per year They form along the branches. Where To Grow. Visually examine your acorns and throw away any that have small holes where an insect may have bored in, as well as those that are off colored or moldy. Place cages over newly planted saplings and replace them with chicken wire fences as the sapling grows. The northern red oak can be expected to grow in Hardiness Zones 3–8. Ivan L. Sander. of Natural Resources. Seed collection: Northern red oak fruit is a nut commonly called an acorn. Check the leaves to determine whether you are collecting white oak or red oak acorns, and label the containers if you collect some of each. The main cause of the decline is the value of acorns and young saplings as a food source for wildlife. For graduate student information, contact Dr. Doug Archbold at 859-257-3352, or 2005). Feeding the tree to encourage fast growth weakens the wood. It is also associated with species like white ash, green ash, big-toothed aspen, American elm, slippery elm, the hickories, scarlet oak, and more (Braun 1950, Eyre 1980). This moderately fast-growing oak tree reaches mature heights of 60 to 75 feet, with a spread of 45 to 50 feet. Northern red oak grows best on fertile soils, but will grow on a broad range of soils with adequate moisture. Quercus rubra, commonly called red oak or northern red oak, is a medium sized, deciduous tree with a rounded to broad-spreading, often irregular crown.Typically grows at a moderate-to-fast rate to a height of 50-75' (often larger in the wild). The leaves of red oak are alternate, moderately shiny, and have seven to eleven lobes with bristles terminating each tooth. Twigs are straight, slender and dark brown. The Northern Red Oak thrives in full sun and is adaptable to any soil, even tolerating wet areas. Throughout Wisconsin’s history, oak trees have provided shelter, enjoyment and food to humans and wildlife species. The bark is smooth and silver-grey when young, and develops warts or ridges with age. You can determine if the acorns have weevils by placing them in water. Red oak is a deciduous broadleaf tree which can grow to 25m and develops a rounded crown. If you are interested in planting a northern red oak tree, don’t forget about our … Following stratification, sow seeds in a nursery container to produce a seedling or sow them in a plastic container in the classroom to observe germination. It turns out that not all oaks are created alike. It turns out that not all oaks are created alike. Within 3 days of planting and following instruction, the newly sprouted tree has grown to 6 - 8 inches. Growing oak trees from seed is a practical and fun way to learn about seedling germination and the life cycle of a tree. How to Grow. The cup is usually removed from the acorn prior to storage or germination. Keep the area surrounding young oak trees free of weeds and water the soil around the tree in the absence of rain. Small sprouted trees should be given a planting space of at least 8.5 square meters. It grows from the north end of the Great Lakes, east to Nova Scotia, south as far as Georgia, Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana, and west to Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, and Minnesota. Scientific name: Quercus rubra. Red oak leaves have pointed lobes with little bristles at the tips, while the lobes on white oak leaves are rounded. Keep the tree protected until it is at least 5 feet tall. Learn more about Monrovia plants and best practices for best possible plant performance. Wait until the second flush begins to fall, and then collect several handfuls. Plant the acorns an inch deep. Place the red oak acorns in a zipper bag with moist sawdust or peat moss. It typically achieves a height of between 60 and 75 feet, so the red oak requires approximately 30 years to reach its full height potential. For convenience, the many species of oak are divided into two main groups: red oaks and white oaks. Send mail to with questions about this site. Leaves are alternate, simple, 5–9 inches long, with 7–11 bristle-tipped lobes cut halfway to the midrib. Red oak trees native to the United States are the northern red oak, the southern red oak and the Texas red oak. I also thank Jay Hewett, manager of Fox Forest located in Hillsborough, NH, for coming up with this ideain the first place. You can plant several acorns in each pot. Spring and Fall are ideal times to plant. Don’t gather the first acorns that fall. Northern red oaks can be found occasionally in pure stands but most frequently they grow in mixed forests often with white pine, red maple, and white and black oaks. They form along the branches. ... but perhaps the most important one is to work within your zone. Red oak's specific epithet, rubra, Latin for "red," refers to the color of its wood. 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Northern Red Oak is one of the common climax forest trees, as it is the most tolerant oak in growing in shade when a young forest tree, in a large native range from southeast Canada & Nova Scotia down to southern Alabama to east Oklahoma up to northern Minnesota, widespread in many places. An Equal Opportunity University. The bark is shallowly grooved and rather plated in appearance. For general undergraduate student information, contact Dr. Rick Durham at (859) 257-3249, or Prepare a mixture with equal parts of peat and perlite in a small pot for planting the cuttings. Northern red oak is widely distributed throughout much of the eastern United States and southeastern Canada. Origin: non-native. The Northern Red Oak is a beloved tree. It’s also easier to transplant than many oaks, though new nursery production methods are making all oaks more plantable. With the honor of being the state tree of New Jersey, this tree is well loved across the country. Fill pots that are at least 12 inches deep with potting soil. Don’t fertilize the tree until its second year after planting. Harvest the fruit in the fall after the acorn becomes brown or tan. A red oak is not a particular species of tree but a term used to describe a type of oak with bristly or pointy leaves, and acorns that mature over two growing seasons, sprouting when they mature in the spring. If you only have one seedling in the pot, you can keep it indoors in a sunny window for up to three months. The toothed lobe is a characteristic that separates the red oak family from the white oak family. Here are the steps for growing oak trees from acorns. The caps of mature acorns come off easily. Yes, you read that right—an oak that’s fast growing! Seeds can be collected after they fall to the ground. Make … Propagating oak trees is good for the environment and it’s an easy, fun project for kids. Only save the acorns that sink. Seed germination: Stratify seeds using moist chilling for 60 days to satisfy physiological dormancy. Harvest the fruit in the fall after the acorn becomes brown or tan. Early on, oak tree saplings are in danger of being consumed by wildlife. This site was last updated on November 30, 2020. The trees grow quickly and can reach a maximum size of 80 feet tall with a trunk 2 feet to 3 feet in diameter. Family: Fagaceae. The tree’s hard, durable wood is valued for flooring, furniture and timbers. Ja… I thank Dick for giving me a long leash on this project and providingme with periodic reviews of the paper, enthusiasm and endless encouragement. Northern red oak is a large tree with a tall, straight trunk; large, spreading branches; and a rounded crown. Learn More. The university does not review, control or take responsibility for the contents of those sites. The first question we had was whether to 'top' the growth at the top to encourage branching out. Buds from 4 mature NRO ortets and juvenile seedlings were grafted onto juvenile and mature rootstock. N-318 Ag Sciences Center University of Kentucky Lexington, KY 40546-0091, Fax (Lexington): 859-257-2859       (Princeton): 270-365-2667, For questions about home gardening, landscaping or commercial horticulture production, please contact your county extension agent. Northern red oak (Quercus rubra) grows throughout the Midwest and is a major tree in the Midwestern timber industry. Oak trees (Quercus) are among the most common tree species found in forests, but their number are declining. You don’t want the sawdust or peat moss soaking wet, just lightly damp. Under optimal conditions, northern red oak is fast growing and trees may live up to 500 Northern Red Oak is a fast growing shade tree. Nurture. One of the most prolific lumber producing trees and often used in cabinetry and hard word flooring, homes across the United States are filled with products made from the Northern Red Oak. The Northern red oak (Quercus rubra) is considered to be a fast grower which, according to the Arbor Day Foundation, denotes a tree that grows in excess of 24 inches annually. Choosing plants that grow and thrive in your particular climate is the very first step toward having a beautiful garden. Click here, then click on your county either on the map or from the list of counties below it. Its tolerance of salt and air pollution makes it a good tree for more exposed areas. Northern red oak is native to the Midwest and is one of the faster growing oaks for the home landscape. Keep in mind that oak trees grow very slowly at first. For undergraduate student information regarding the Sustainable Agriculture program, contact Dr. Krista Jacobsen at (859) 257-3921, or "We were gifted a northern red oak acorn, complete with planting material and container after my mom passed away. It has a rounded growth habit throughout life - often broader than tall. Red oak is planted regularly in Iowa and Nebraska and may be the easiest of the oaks to propagate. They can be stored for short periods (~ 1 year) in air tight containers in the refrigerator if the seeds are not permitted to dry out. It grows from Quebec, Ontario, Nova ... more than a few years or grow to more than 15–20 cm in height. In vitro and conventional vegetative propagation methods will be Transplant the seedlings to a permanent location when the first leaves unfurl.