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Women's Day Circle

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Easton Rivera
Easton Rivera

Black Oak



Black oak (Quercus velutina) is a member of the broad red oak group (red, black, blackjack, pin, northern pin, and shingle). This group is characterized by having bristles or points on the leaf lobes and acorns which mature in two growing seasons and sprout in the spring after maturity.




black oak


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Black oak leaves are alternate, simple, 5 to 9 inches long and have 5 to 7 irregular bristle tipped lobes. The lobes extend 2/3 to 7/8 of the way to the midrib of the leaf and have broad U-shaped or circular sinuses. The leaves are lustrous and dark green in color on the upper surface and paler or coppery below with more or less scurfy pubescence and prominent tufts in the axils of the leaf veins. Buds are 1/4 to 1/2 inch in length, sharp pointed, angled in cross section and have gray-woolly bud scales. Twigs are stout and red-brown in color. The bark is thick, nearly black in color and deeply furrowed with narrow scaly ridges; the inner bark is orange-yellow in color. The acorns are 1/2 to 3/4 inch in length, red-brown in color, and enclosed for 1/3 to 1/2 its length by the acorn cup. Red oak has shallower and more evenly lobed leaves, reddish inner bark, smaller buds and a larger acorn enclosed less than 1/4 of its length by the acorn cup.


Black oak provides a problem often encountered in the identification of oaks according to "Forest and Shade Trees of Iowa" by Peter van der Linden and Donald Farrar. "Most trees in southern and east central Iowa are quite typical of the species, having large, strongly angled, densely hairy buds and acorn cups with loosely attached scales. However, some of the trees called 'black oak' along the edge of this species' range in northeast and north central Iowa have small, slightly angled buds that are incompletely hairy and acorn cups with tighter fitting scales. These may be geographical variants or hybrids between black and red or Hill's oak.


The wood of black oak hard, heavy and strong. The wood is usually of less value than red oak because the trees are often more open grown and tend to develop more branches. It is used in furniture, flooring, pallets, boxes, railroad ties, and mine timbers.


It looks like a species from the red oak grouping, which black oak is a part of. Whether it is specifically black oak is not something I can say for sure. It could be any number of species. -database.com/wood-articles/distinguishing-red-oak-from-white-oak/


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  • Pay attention to the bark color and texture as well as the details of the leaves. They can be up to 9 inches long and feature distinctive lobes with bristled tips."}},"@type": "Question","name": "Where are black oaks found?","acceptedAnswer": "@type": "Answer","text": "Black oaks range along the East Coast and in many states on the eastern half of the United States, as well as the southern parts of Ontario. They are often found in upland areas with moderate climates."]}]}] .st0fill:none;stroke:#333;stroke-width:2;stroke-linecap:round .st0fill:none;stroke:#000;stroke-width:2 MenuHomeSustainability for All. Facebook Twitter Instagram Pinterest SubscribeSearchCloseSearch the siteGO News Environment Business & Policy Science Animals Home & Design Current Events Treehugger Voices News Archive Environment Planet Earth Climate Crisis Pollution Recycling & Waste Natural Disasters Transportation Eco Terms A to Z Home & Garden Home Natural Cleaning Green Living Sustainable Eating Garden Planting Guides Indoor Gardening Urban Farms Science Space Natural Science Technology Agriculture Energy Policy Corporate Responsibility Environmental Policy Economics Food Issues Eco-Design Tiny Homes Architecture Interior Design Green Design Urban Design Animals Wildlife Pets Animal Rights Endangered Species More Clean Beauty Culture About UsNewsEnvironment

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Contact UsEditorial GuidelinesPrivacy PolicyEnvironmentPlanet EarthIdentifying the Black Oak TreeLearn about this tree's identifying characteristics, where to find it, and more.


Black oak can sometimes be confused with red oak. The difference is that red oak trees have more severely lobed leaves and larger acorns. Plus, the inner bark is reddish rather than black oak's yellowish color.


black oak. CT, MA, ME, NH, RI, VT; absent from much of northern and eastern ME. Dry-mesic forests and woodlands. This species is very similar to Quercus rubra. In addition to the characters mentioned in the key, Q. velutina has slightly darker, more furrowed bark and often has shallower leaf blade sinues (relative to the blade width) than Q. rubra.


Our classic folding pocket knife with black blade for modern look. This is the perfect knife for a more technical aesthetic, great for every day carry (EDC) and collectors alike! The blade and Virobloc locking ring have been anodized for a matte black finish. The process leaves you with a knife that is still food and re-sharpening safe!


Historically, Native Americans played an integral role in fire regimes of oak savanna and barrens ecosystems, intentionally and/or accidentally setting fires. Oak barrens have been cleared for sand mining, agriculture, and residential and urban development. Alteration of historic fire regimes has shifted most barrens types into woodlands and forest. Wildfire suppression policies instituted in the 1920s in concert with road construction, expansion of towns, and increased agriculture caused a dramatic decrease in fire frequency and intensity. The reduction of fire in the landscape resulted in the succession of open oak barrens to closed-canopy forests dominated by black and white oaks with little advanced regeneration of oaks and a vanishing graminoid component. In addition, timber exploitation of oaks in the 1920s destroyed or degraded oak barrens across Michigan. Many oak barrens fragments are currently completely dominated by black oak as the result of selective harvest of canopy white oak. In addition to simplified overstory structure, these communities are often depauperate in floristic diversity as the result of fire suppression and subsequent woody encroachment, livestock grazing, off-road vehicle activity, and the invasion of non-native species. Ground layer vegetation of barrens remnants has been inhibited by low levels of light filtering through the dense overstories and impenetrable understories (often dominated by invasive shrubs) and by the thick litter layers that have accumulated from nearly a century of fire suppression. 041b061a72


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