Strong, sturdy, and beautiful, oak trees sprout up across the Show-Me State in more than a dozen varieties. As spring is right around the corner and many homeowners are starting to plan for the planting season ahead, today Nixa Lawn Service explores some of the most popular types of oak trees in Missouri. Whether the black, the blackjack, the pin, or the post, you’re sure to love one of these gorgeous, promising trees.
Related Post: Best Fruit Trees for Missouri
Types of Oak Trees in Missouri
The black oak is in the red oak group (like the blackjack below), and it typically reaches 20-25 meters in height. Its shiny green leaves have 5-7 bristle-tipped lobes, and there are stellate hairs on the underside of the leaf, growing in small clumps. You might be surprised to learn that the black oak’s bark contains quercitron, a yellow pigment that was once sold commercially in Europe.
The blackjack is a small variety of oak, growing to be about 15 meters tall. The bark is black and cracked with orange fissures, and the leaves are a three-lobed bell shape. Sometimes these leaves remain attached to the tree through winter, though they do turn dry and brown. Blackjack oaks take about 18 months to mature.
The pin oak is a very common choice for landscaping because it grows quickly and easily. Topping out at about 18-22 meters, this medium-sized oak begins with smooth bark that develops into rougher and looser bark over time (much like the wrinkles and sags of skin). As it ages, the pin oak also develops a loose canopy wherein the upper branches stand up, the middle branches shoot out, and the lower branches droop downward.
A variety of the white oak group, the post oak is only 10-15 meters tall. It has distinctive three-lobed leaves, shaped somewhat like a Maltese Cross. As you might have guessed from the name, post oak wood is often used to create fence posts because it is tough and resists rot.
Although commonly mistaken for a pin oak or black oak, the scarlet oak is a unique variety of the red oak group. It grows 20-30 meters tall and has seven-lobed, glossy green leaves. The tree became known as “scarlet” due to the bright red color of the foliage in autumn (which is one way to differentiate it from the pin oak, which typically turns bronze). Cherished for its color, the scarlet oak is often planted for ornamentation.
The white oak lives a long, long time. In fact, some white oaks have been documented at over 450 years old (though a more common age estimate is 200-300 years)! Although its name specifies a white color, most white oaks are actually light gray. These trees typically reach 25-30 meters, and they are often as wide as they are tall. The leaves are usually seven-lobed and they turn red or brown in the autumn.
Related Post: Choose These Trees for Your Next Landscaping Project
Professional Tree Services in Springfield, MO
Although these are some of the most popular Missouri oaks, you might also want to investigate the bur oak, chestnut oak, dwarf chestnut oak, chinquapin oak, northern red oak, overcup oak, and water oak. If you live in southwest Missouri and you want to add an oak tree to your yard this spring, give Nixa Lawn Service a call. In addition to full-service lawn care, we also plant trees, trim trees, and provide care for sick trees. To learn more about our tree services, give us a call at 417-724-0318 or request a quote online. We look forward to hearing from you!