Tall branches and narrow leaves of Quercus nigra (Water Oak)
Close-up of the uniquely shaped foliage of Quercus nigra (Water Oak)

Quercus nigra (Water Oak) Unity Grown

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Qualifies for Marylanders Plant Trees Coupon ($25 Off) - see below for more info

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Quercus nigra, commonly called water oak, is a medium-sized, relatively short-lived but fast-growing oak, noted for its interesting leaf shape, with leaves that are more narrow and less lobed than other oaks. Although water oaks typically only live to 30 to 50 years old, they can grow to a height of 50-80' tall and up to 70' wide; in that short time, the trunk may get as wide as three and a half feet in diameter! Water oak is typically planted for shade or naturalization purposes, and works great for mitigation or rehabilitation; occasionally used as a specimen tree in parks or yards, care should be taken with choosing the right planting location for water oak, as they are more subject to breakage in storms or with heavy ice. Found in nature in lower, wetter areas, Quercus nigra is tolerant of wet soil and occasional flooding.

As an oak, Quercus nigra produces acorns which, for this species, are rounded (occasionally nearly spherical) with small, woolly caps that barely cover the base of the acorn. Water oak acorns are ecologically valuable to a large number of species, white-tailed deer, black bear, and other smaller mammals as well as a number of bird species, including ducks, woodpeckers, and blue jays. In addition to acorn value, many oak species are regarded as important keystone plants for their support of larval butterflies and moths, and Quercus nigra is no different, acting as a host to several species of hairstreak butterfly and duskywing moth, among others.

Native to Eastern Shore, Native to Maryland, Native to U.S., and Straight Species
Mature Tree Height: Large: over 30 feet
Sun (6+ hours)
Soil Moisture: Medium to Wet and Well-drained
Soil Type: Wide Tolerance
Bloom Time: Spring
Flower Color: Yellow and Green
Foliage Color: Green
Features: Attracts Birds, Attracts Wildlife, Attracts Butterflies, Attracts Pollinators, Host Plant for Butterflies or Moths, Keystone Plant, and Erosion Control
Tolerances: Black Walnut Tolerant, Clay Soil Tolerant, Deer Tolerant, Wet Soil Tolerant, and Flood Tolerant
Garden Type: Meadow, Rain Garden, Specimen Tree, and Shade Tree

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From the Maryland Department of Natural Resources:

"We launched Marylanders Plant Trees in 2009 to encourage citizens and organizations to partner with the State to plant new trees. Today, citizens can still take advantage of our coupon program to receive $25 off the purchase of a native tree at 86 participating nurseries across the State. The State cost of $20 per coupon is funded through a settlement from a major power generator for Clean Air Act violations, in partnership with the Office of the Attorney General, and Maryland’s participating tree vendors are generously absorbing the remaining $5.

Trees must be planted in the state of Maryland to qualify for $25 off coupon.
Wholesale customers do not qualify.