Black Oak

All about the Black Oak:

Scientific Nomenclature: Quercus velutina

Common Names: black oak, Eastern black oak

                         Previously known as: yellow oak

Mature Height: 50–100 feet

Mature Spread: 35–60 feet

Growth Rate: Moderate

Attracts Wildlife: Pollinators, select moth species, birds, small mammals

Messiness: May be semi-evergreen in select locations, but leaves will turn and drop in most places in autumn. Drooping catkins bloom in spring and drop shortly after. A mast of ½ to 1-inch nearly black acorns will mature and drop every other autumn, as the acorns require 2 years to mature fully.

Shape: Rounded/Spreading

Native to Kentucky: No

Preferred Soils: Prefers sandy, acidic (<6.0pH) soils but is tolerant of other soil types as long as they are well-drained.

Screening: Not useful as a screening/ privacy tree.

Drought Tolerance: Tolerant of drought, heat, and dry soils.

Coniferous or Deciduous: Deciduous

Pruning: Rarely needs to be pruned, if ever. This tree often retains numerous small dead branches throughout its crown though, if those become problematic they can be removed.

Climate Quick Facts:

Following being planted as a sapling, over 20 years one black oak will:

  • Sequester ~983 pounds of CO2. 
  • Reduce stormwater runoff by 223 gallons.