ENH-698/ST540: Quercus acutissima: Sawtooth Oak

ENH-698/ST540: Quercus acutissima: Sawtooth Oak

Edward F. Gilman and Dennis G. Watson2


Sawtooth oak is a pretty, giant, deciduous tree, 50 toes in top or taller with a rounded, broad, pyramidal form. The leaves are just like chestnut (Castanea) and have small bristles on the edges. New spring leaves are a pretty vivid yellow-green and fall colour varies from uninteresting yellow to brown. Brown leaves hold onto the tree into the winter which makes the tree unattractive to some individuals. The trunk and bark of sawtooth oak are gray-brown and deeply furrowed. The trunk flares out on the base lifting sidewalks and curbing if planted in tree lawns lower than eight toes large or too near walks.

Determine 1. 

Mature Quercus acutissima: sawtooth oak

Credit score:

Ed Gilman, UF/IFAS

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Basic Info

Scientific identify: Quercus acutissima

Pronunciation: KWERK-us ack-yoo-TISS-ih-muh

Widespread identify(s): Sawtooth oak

Household: Fagaceae

USDA hardiness zones: 5B by means of 9A (Fig. 2)

Origin: not native to North America

Invasive potential: little invasive potential

Makes use of: specimen; shade; avenue with out sidewalk; parking zone island > 200 sq ft; tree garden > 6 ft large; city tolerant; freeway median

Availability: considerably obtainable, could need to exit of the area to search out the tree

Determine 2. 


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Top: 35 to 45 toes

Unfold: 35 to 50 toes

Crown uniformity: symmetrical

Crown form: pyramidal, spherical

Crown density: reasonable

Progress price: reasonable

Texture: coarse


Leaf association: alternate (Fig. 3)

Leaf sort: easy

Leaf margin: serrate, pectinate

Leaf form: obovate, rectangular, ovate

Leaf venation: pinnate

Leaf sort and persistence: deciduous

Leaf blade size: 2 to four inches, four to eight inches

Leaf colour: inexperienced

Fall colour: yellow

Fall attribute: showy

Determine 3. 


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Flower colour: brown

Flower traits: not showy


Fruit form: oval

Fruit size: .5 to 1 inch

Fruit protecting: dry or exhausting

Fruit colour: brown

Fruit traits: attracts squirrels/mammals; showy; fruit/leaves a litter downside

Trunk and Branches

Trunk/bark/branches: branches droop; not showy; sometimes one trunk; thorns

Pruning requirement: wanted for robust construction

Breakage: resistant

Present yr twig colour: brown

Present yr twig thickness: medium

Wooden particular gravity: unknown


Gentle requirement: full solar

Soil tolerances: clay; sand; loam; acidic; barely alkaline; well-drained; often moist

Drought tolerance: excessive

Aerosol salt tolerance: reasonable


Roots: not an issue

Winter curiosity: no

Excellent tree: sure

Ozone sensitivity: unknown

Verticillium wilt susceptibility: resistant

Pest resistance: proof against pests/illnesses

Use and Administration

Sawtooth oak prefers a well-drained, acid soil however will adapt to most soils besides extremely alkaline. The trunk stays straight and often dominant over the lateral branches forming a pyramidal form within the early years making this tree very appropriate for city planting. Progress is quickly including three toes in top every year after planting. Because it ages, it grows right into a broad, rounded cover that might make it helpful as a shade tree, avenue or parking zone tree or a garden tree specimen. It’s largely untested as a avenue tree however deserves an opportunity to indicate its city adaptability. Decrease branches should be shortened then eliminated early when planting this as a avenue or parking zone tree since they are going to droop towards the bottom because the tree grows older, requiring removing to permit for vehicular visitors. Depart the extra upright, spreading branches to create extra clearance beneath. Decrease branches could be left on bushes grown in additional open areas to permit for full growth of the picturesque, low branching, open type. Multi-trunked specimens can reportedly break up at about 25-years-old resulting from embedded bark and poor attachment so preserve the central chief.

The acorns of sawtooth oak are giant (1-inch-long) and are produced in giant portions within the fall. They’re fairly widespread with wildlife. The acorns could trigger a litter downside for some if the tree is positioned close to walkways, driveways or home gutters. However squirrels and different wildlife love the acorns. Timber develop greatest in well-drained soil within the full solar. Irrigation helps bushes turn out to be established however as soon as established, they develop very quick with out irrigation. This is without doubt one of the quickest rising bushes in Auburn’ shade tree trials.

Propagation of Oaks by seed is the most typical. Propagate by stratifying acorns in fall. Acorns will germinate in spring. Some seeds could germinate close to current crops.


No pests of main concern though the potential checklist is lengthy. It’s often pest-free.

Galls trigger householders a lot concern. There are a lot of sorts and galls could be on the leaves or twigs. Most galls are innocent so chemical controls are usually not recommended.

Scales of a number of sorts can often be managed with sprays of horticultural oil.

Aphids trigger distorted development and deposits of honeydew on decrease leaves. On giant bushes, naturally-occurring predatory bugs will usually convey the aphid inhabitants underneath management.

Boring bugs are more than likely to assault weakened or harassed bushes. Newly planted younger bushes may be attacked. Hold bushes as wholesome as doable with common fertilization and water throughout dry climate.

Many caterpillars feed on oak. Giant bushes tolerate some feeding damage with out hurt. Timber repeatedly attacked, or having another downside, might have spraying. Tent caterpillars type nests in bushes then eat the foliage. The nests could be pruned out when small. The place they happen, gypsy moth caterpillars are extraordinarily harmful on oaks. Fall cankerworm has been an issue in some years.

Twig pruner causes twigs to drop off in the summertime. The larvae experience the twig to the bottom. Rake up and destroy fallen twigs.

Lace bugs often suck juices from leaves inflicting them to look dusty or whitish grey.

Leaf miners trigger brown areas in leaves. To determine leaf miner damage tear the leaf in two throughout the damage. If the damage is because of leaf miner, the higher and decrease leaf surfaces are separate and black insect excrement will likely be seen.


No illnesses are of main concern though the checklist of potential issues is lengthy. Normally this oak is disease-free.

Anthracnose could also be a major problem in moist climate. Contaminated leaves have lifeless areas following the midrib or bigger veins. These mild brown blotches could run collectively and, in extreme circumstances, trigger leaf drop. Timber of low vigor, repeatedly defoliated, could die. Timber defoliated a number of years in a row might have spraying, to permit the tree to recuperate.

Canker illnesses assault the trunk and branches. Hold bushes wholesome by common fertilization. Prune out diseased or lifeless branches.

Leaf blister signs are spherical raised areas on the higher leaf surfaces inflicting depressions of the identical form and dimension on decrease leaf surfaces. Contaminated areas are yellowish-white to yellowish-brown. The illness is most critical in moist seasons within the spring however it often doesn’t should be handled.

A lot of fungi trigger leaf spots however are often not critical. Rake up and eliminate contaminated leaves.

Powdery mildew coats leaves with white powdery development and is mostly innocent.

Shoestring root rot assaults the roots and as soon as inside strikes upward, killing the cambium. The leaves on contaminated bushes are small, pale or yellowed and fall early. There isn’t any sensible management. Wholesome bushes could also be extra resistant than bushes of low vigor.

Chlorosis resulting from micronutrient-deficiency happens on excessive pH soil.

U.S. Division of Agriculture, UF/IFAS Extension Service, College of Florida, IFAS, Florida A & M College Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Nick T. Place, dean for UF/IFAS Extension.

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