Northern Red Oak

Quercus rubra

Red Oak: Full Tree - Click for larger image
  • Family: Fagaceae

  • Large tree with rounded crown

  • Height ranges between 18-27m (60-90')

Twigs & Fruiting Structures
Distribution and Uses


  • Simple and alternate; hairless

  • 10-23cm (4-9") in length; 7.5-15cm (3-6") in width

  • Elliptical shape

  • Between 7 and 11 shallow lobes; some have bristles

  • Dull green coloring from above

  • Tufts of hair along underside of midvein angles

  • Click here for image of leaf underside


Red Oak: Leaves - Click for larger image
Red Oak: Buds - Click for larger image

Twigs & Fruiting Structures

  • Twigs reddish-brown and smooth; hairless; for picture of twig detail Click Here

  • Terminal buds are large, cone-shaped

  • Buds are reddish-brown, covered with hairless, non-angled scales


Red Oak: Acorn - Click for larger image
  • Acorns 1.5-2.8cm (5/8 to 1 and 1/8") in length

  • Acorns are egg-shaped

  • Broad caps cover less than 1/3 of acorn

  • Caps are reddish-brown; composed of tight overlapping scales

  • Caps are flat, look like berets or saucers



  • Dark grey to blackish; inner bark is reddish in color

  • Rough to the touch; narrow depressions resemble ski markings

Distribution & Uses

  • Inhabits rocky, sandy, and moist areas

  • Found inside western Ontario, Cape Brenton Island, Georgia, easter Oklahoma, and Minnesota

  • Popularly utilized in lumber: flooring, furniture, fence-posts, and railroad ties


Red Oak: Bark - Click for larger image