Audubon® Dwarf Chestnut Oak
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If you’re a bird lover, you may know that planting an oak tree is probably the best thing you can do to support your feathered friends. Oak Trees host literally hundreds of species of caterpillars and other insects, which in turn make up a vital part of many birds’ diets. The problem is, most oaks become massive in time—what do you do if you have a small yard? Enter Dwarf Chinkapin Oak, a charming species that stays petite! This unusual, shrubby oak will give birds what they want, but it won’t take over your whole garden. Perfect!
May Benefit & Attract: cardinals & grosbeaks, wrens, woodpeckers, sparrows, thrushes, orioles, waxwings, nuthatches, finches, mockingbirds & thrashers, crows & jays, vireos
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
Dwarf Chinkapin Oak is a tenacious little survivor that thrives in sunny, dry, poor, rocky sites. It’s found over a vast range stretching from Oklahoma to New Hampshire, though it is rarely found in the middle of that range—in the Ohio Valley, where soils are too alkaline for its liking. Typically staying short and shrubby, Dwarf Chinkapin Oak will make a thicket in time, which provides good nesting habitat for many songbirds. If suckers are removed promptly, it will become a tree, but not a very large one. The national champion, in New York State, is only 34 feet tall!
Acorns, too! Dwarf Chinkapin Oak serves up acorns to hungry wildlife, like squirrels, blue jays, nuthatches, and woodpeckers. Its acorns are more palatable than those of most other species, and they are produced at a young age. Trees may start bearing them in only three to five years.
How to Grow
Plant your Dwarf Chinkapin Oak in an area that will receive full sun—this tree does not like shade at all. It also struggles in alkaline soils, and the leaves will become chlorotic (yellow) there. Choose this tree only if your soil is naturally acidic. Good drainage is important as well. If your soil stays soggy after a rain, you should select another type of Oak, such as Swamp White Oak or Overcup Oak. 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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