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Audubon® Chestnut Oak
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A beautiful, bountiful shade tree that pleases people and wildlife alike! You’ll love Chestnut Oak for its glossy, wavy-edged leaves; its rugged, widely furrowed bark; and its elegant, upright form. Squirrels, Jays, and Woodpeckers will love it for its large, sweet acorns. (Unlike other acorns, they are sweet enough for even humans to eat right off the tree!) Birds will also enjoy the wealth of insect food they’ll find in Chestnut Oak’s canopy—a diverse array of caterpillars, leafhoppers, aphids, beetles, and plant bugs that nourish native songbirds and their chicks. A very fine landscape tree and wildlife café.
May Benefit or Attract: Thrushes, waxwings, wood warblers, finches, mockingbirds & thrashers, chickadees & titmice, orioles, cardinals & grosbeaks, crows & jays, sparrows, nuthatches, vireos, hummingbirds, woodpeckers, and wrens.
Take Birds Under Your Wing
New! Introducing our bird-friendly collection of Audubon® Native Plants & Trees
- Better for Birds, 100% Neonic-Free
- Not Available in non-native regions, states or counties (see Native Regions map)
Bower & Branch is proud to grow Audubon® Native Plants for Birds in partnership with the National Audubon Society to help birds and other wildlife thrive.
- The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow
- This bird-friendly native plant provides food and shelter for local and migrating birds and other wildlife
- Your purchase and planting of this native flora directly supports Audubon’s conservation mission and impact
- Learn how you can help birds in your home and community through Audubon’s Plants for Birds program
- Audubon Native Plants & Trees are free of neonicotinoids and exclusively grown by Bower & Branch
Audubon® is a licensed and registered trademark of the National Audubon Society. All rights reserved.
Size AA (2-3' tall) container grown
- Hardiness Zone: 4-8
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Recommended by Our Growers
Chestnut Oak is a mountain-dwelling tree, a tough, durable, drought-tolerant denizen of the Appalachians and its foothills. It grows on rocky soil (another name for it is “Rock Oak”), from southern Maine to Georgia; its range also extends into the neighboring states. Older specimens are instantly recognizable by their striking, deeply furrowed, dark-colored bark. Because their leaves are so similar, Chestnut Oak is often confused with Swamp Chestnut Oak, but there are distinctions. Swamp Chestnut Oak has light-colored bark, and it prefers wetter habitats. Also, Chestnut Oak is a smaller-growing tree.
Chestnut Oak thrives in challenging conditions—even on the mean streets of the city! The Society of Municipal Arborists named Chestnut Oak its “Urban Tree of the Year” in 2017 for its ability to show grace under pressure.
How to Grow
Plant your Chestnut Oak in an area where it will have lots of elbow room and will receive full sun all day. It is not fussy about soil and will be quite drought tolerant once it’s established. Water regularly during the first couple of years while it is putting down roots. Little pruning will be necessary, but if you must prune, do so only between December and February. The fungal disease Oak Wilt can strike when Oaks are pruned during active growth.
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