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Sawtooth OakQuercus acutissima

  • Sawtooth Oak - Quercus acutissima
  • Sawtooth Oak - Quercus acutissima
  • Sawtooth Oak - Quercus acutissima
  • Sawtooth Oak - Quercus acutissima
  • Sawtooth Oak - Quercus acutissima

The sawtooth oak is an attractive and durable shade tree that adapts to a wide range of soil and climate conditions. The leaves add to the visual interest—opening a brilliant yellow to golden yellow color in the spring, turning dark lustrous green in summer and yellow to golden brown in the fall. Its wide-spreading habit also provides great shade.

Add in the fact that it grows at a fairly fast rate, and you have a truly valuable landscape tree for almost any yard.


Hardiness Zones

The sawtooth oak can be expected to grow in Hardiness Zones 5–9. View Map

Tree Type

This is a shade tree, featuring a spreading canopy capable of blocking sunlight.

Mature Size

The sawtooth oak grows to a height of 40–60' and a spread of 40–60' at maturity.

Growth Speed Medium to Fast Growth Rate

This tree grows at a medium to fast rate, with height increases of anywhere from 13" to more than 24" per year.

Sun Preference

Full sun is the ideal condition for this tree, meaning it should get at least 6 hours of direct, unfiltered sunlight each day.

Soil Preference

The sawtooth oak grows in acidic, loamy, moist, sandy, well-drained and clay soils. It has some drought tolerance.

Attributes

This tree:
  • Transplants easily.
  • Features simple, obovate-oblong to oblong leaves that are 3½–7½" long with bristle-like teeth terminating the 12–16 parallel veins. They open a brilliant yellow to golden yellow color in the spring, turning dark lustrous green in summer and yellow to golden brown in the fall.
  • Produces slender golden catkins that are 3¬–4" long and typically appear with the emerging leaves in late march or early April.
  • Yields oval acorns that are 1" long and quite popular with wildlife.
  • Grows in a pyramidal shape that rounds out over time.

Wildlife Value

Sawtooth oaks produce acorns at a very young age, providing food for many kinds of wildlife, especially wild turkeys.

History/Lore

The native habitat of the sawtooth oak tree is Japan, Korea, China and the Himalayan Mountain range. The tree was introduced to America in 1862. This oak probably derives its name from the distinctive sawtooth-edged leaves it produces.