Alphabetical Plant Listing

Quercus phellos (Willow Oak)

Willow Oak, Swamp Willow Oak, Pin Oak, Peach Oak


A handsome and popular shade tree, Quercus phellos (Willow Oak) is a medium to large, deciduous tree with a straight trunk and an oval to rounded crown with upswept branches. It is noted for its long, fine-textured, willow-like leaves, up to 5 in. long (12 cm). Bright green in summer, the foliage turns yellow or russet in the fall. The gray to dark brown bark is smooth when young, becoming rough and fissured with maturity. The nearly round acorns, 1/2 in. long (1 cm), with thin, saucer-like cap, are striated with brown and black bands. They are a valuable source of food for many species of mammals and birds. A fast grower, Willow Oak tolerates urban conditions very well and is appreciated as a street tree, shade tree in lawns, in reclamation sites, and in rain gardens. It is also incredibly tolerant of heat, drought, and stress once established. Long-lived (200 years), it is excellent for wildlife.

  • Grows up to 40-60 ft. tall (12-184 m) and 30-40 ft. wide (9-12 m).
  • A full sun lover, this tree is easily grown in average, slightly acidic, medium to wet, well-drained soils. Adaptable to a wide range of soil conditions including clay. Wet soil tolerant.
  • Perfect as a specimen plant.
  • Generally resistant to pest issues. Keep an eye out for oak wilt, chestnut blight, shoestring root rot, anthracnose, oak leaf blister, cankers, leaf spots and powdery mildew.
  • Willow Oak is strong and resists breakage from wind and heavy loads of ice and snow.
  • Prune to maintain shape. Fertilize 3 times a year with lawn fertilizer 3:1:2 ratio. Readily transplanted because of shallow roots. Transplant in late winter, when dormant.
  • Propagate by seed. Stratify or plant immediately outdoors or in deep containers.
  • Native to the southeastern United States.

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Requirements

Hardiness 6 – 9
Heat Zones 3 – 9
Climate Zones 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20, 21
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Quercus - Oaks
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 40' – 60' (12m – 18m)
Spread 30' – 40' (9m – 12m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Missouri, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Southwest, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Clay Soil, Drought, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow

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Bruce Kirchoff, Katja Schulz, Flickr, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 6 – 9
Heat Zones 3 – 9
Climate Zones 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20, 21
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Quercus - Oaks
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 40' – 60' (12m – 18m)
Spread 30' – 40' (9m – 12m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Missouri, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Southwest, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Clay Soil, Drought, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow

Guides with Quercus - Oaks

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