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Editor's Picks

Piers Trehane
Last March marked the 10 years since the death of Piers...
Roderick Cameron | Apr 13, 2021
Quercus Propagation Manual Cover
A new publication fills a void.
Roderick Cameron | Feb 13, 2021
Emory oak near Young, Arizona © Nanebah Lyndon
Emory oak acorns are a critically important commodity for...
Website Editor | Feb 12, 2021

Plant Focus

Quercus stenophylloides is a medium-sized evergreen oak (15–18 m tall) restricted to central and northern Taiwan.

Hybrid Highlight: Quercus ×heterophylla F. Michx.

Named in honor of one of America’s first botanists, John Bartram, Quercus ×heterophylla is known by many as Bartram’s oak. This interesting hybrid can be found in the US where the parent species of Q. rubra and Q. phellos overlap (essentially most of the midwestern to southeastern states) and in collections. This hybrid can also be found in Europe in arboreta and private collections. One of the largest European specimens stands in the Garden Kingdom of Dessau-Wörlitz, Germany. It measures over 15 ft in circumference and is 65 ft tall.  A noteworthy specimen in the US is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and has nearly identical dimensions of the grand European tree (16 ft circumference, 61 ft tall). This tree is believed to be a direct descendant of a Q. ×heterophylla grown by John Bartram on his property.

Quercus ×heterophylla in the Garden Kingdom of Dessau-Wörlitz, Germany © Andreas Gomolka
Detail of the leaves on the tree in Dessau-Wörlitz  © Andreas Gomolka

This is an attractive hybrid typically characterized by long, slender leaves with 6-8 shallow lobes. Acorns are typically small (3/8 to 1/2 inch diameter) with shallow, flattened cups. The acorns are usually light to medium brown with dark striations. Seedling trees will vary of course, some having larger leaves or lager acorns. This hybrid makes a pleasing street tree and there exists a great opportunity to make superior selections. 

A young Quercus ×heterophylla in central Missouri, USA © Ryan Russell
Detail of leaves © Ryan Russell