Post Oak – Quercus stellata
Tree with dense, rounded crown and distinctive leaves suggesting a Maltese cross; sometimes a shrub.
Height: 30-70’ / Diameter: 1-2’
Leaves: 3-6” long, 2-4” wide. Obovate; with 5-7 deep broad rounded lobes; 2 middle lobes largest; with short-pointed base and rounded tip. Shiny dark green and slightly rough above; gray-green with tiny hairs beneath; turning brown in autumn. Bark: light gray; fissured into scaly ridges. Acorns: ½ to 1” long; elliptical; green becoming brown; usually stalkless; maturing first year.
Habitat: Sandy, gravelly, and rocky ridges, also moist loamy soils of flood plains along streams. Range: Massachusetts south to central Florida, west to Texas, and north to Iowa.
The wood is marketed as White Oak and used for railroad cross-ties, posts and construction timbers. Of large size in the lower Mississippi Valley where it is known as “Delta Post Oak.”