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Having trouble choosing which oak is the best choice for your design? Then keep reading for a run-down of our favorite oaks. With good color, ample acorns and strong roots and branches, these three are our top Oak choices for shade and street trees.

 

 

 

Quercus nuttallii: Nutall Oak, Red Oak, Red River Oak

Height: 60-100 feet

Width: 20-40 feet

A native North American deciduous tree, the Nutall Oak grows naturally along stream banks and other well-hydrated habitats. In landscaping, it’s often used as a shade tree and as a specimen tree. It fits easily into any residential or commercial design and, due to its tolerance for water, is a great tree for areas with poor drainage. Its dark green leaves provide ample canopy in the summer and give way to rich red color in the fall. Favored for its abundant acorns, divided branching structure and strong root systems, the Nutall Oak is an easy choice for most any landscape.

 

 

 

 

Palustris rubra: Pin Oak

Height: 70-80 feet

Width: 25-45 feet

The Pin oak is a great choice as a street tree and a shade tree. It grows quickly, usually reaching full maturity in 15-20 years, making it all the more appealing for landscape design. It’s green, lobed leaves turn a rusty red-brown in the fall and often persist into early winter: a superior choice for autumn color. It’s large crops of acorns make it attractive to squirrels, deer and other wildlife, while its strong branches and abundant, thick leaves make ideal nesting places for local birds.

 

 

 

 

 

Quercus shumardii, Shumard red Oak

Height: 80-100 feet

Width: 40-60 feet

The Shumard red Oak is valued as a shade tree in all types of landscapes. It is particularly resistant to drought and loves full sun, making it a great choice for a particularly dry setting or sunny spot. Its fall color display has an extra interest: in addition to the reds and browns, hues of yellow also appear. Fall colors appear fairly late in the season, making it ideal to pair with trees that turn earlier. This oak also provides ample acorns for wild life.