Landscaping Ground Maintenance
3675 Africa Rd, Galena,Ohio
Mon-Fri: 8am - 6pm /
Sat-Sun - 10am - 5pm
02 Jun 2020
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Scarlet Oak

Tree or Plant Type: 
  • Tree


  • Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
Landscape Uses: 
  • Shade tree, 
  • Specimen

Size Range: 

  • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

Mature Height: 

40-75 feet

Mature Width: 

40-75 feet

Light Exposure: 

  • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

Hardiness Zones: 

  • Zone 5, 
  • Zone 6, 
  • Zone 7, 
  • Zone 8

Soil Preference: 

  • Acid soil, 
  • Moist, well-drained soil


  • Dry sites

Acid Soils: 

  • Prefers

Alkaline Soils: 

  • Intolerant

Salt Spray: 

  • Intolerant

Soil Salt: 

  • Tolerant
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By Famartin – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Drought Conditions: 

  • Moderately Tolerant

Poor Drainage: 

  • Intolerant

Planting Considerations: 

  • Messy fruit/plant parts

Ornamental Interest

  • Fall color

Season of Interest: 

  • Mid fall, 
  • Late fall

Flower Color & Fragrance: 

  • Inconspicuous

Shape or Form: 

  • Oval, 
  • Pyramidal

Growth Rate: 

  • Moderate

Transplants Well: 

  • Yes


  • Mammals, 
  • Migrant birds

True to its name, the scarlet oak produces wonderful scarlet fall color. This tree is best used in residential yards rather than as a street tree.

Field Observations: 

Scarlet oak is a member of the red oak group with lobed leaves and is valued for its ornamental attributes as well as its fine wood. It is considered an excellent alternative to the overplanted pin oak because it is beautiful throughout the year and tolerates alkaline soil.

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22 May 2020
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Height: about 50 m (164 ft)
Leaf: The leaves of Bitternut are 30 cm long, odd pinnate, up to 17 cm (6.7 in) long with 7 -11 lanceolate leaflets. The leaf margin is serrated.
Leaf Shape:  imparipinnate
Leaf margin: serrated
Leaf position: alternate
Fall foliage: bright yellow – brown
Flowering: May
Blossom color: yellow-green
Blossom description: The flowers are small green-yellow catkins.
Gender distribution: monoecious
Fruit: The nuts are in a nutshell. The nut is large up to 3 cm (1.2 in). The nut has a bitter taste.
Branches: The branches are first brown and hairy, later smooth and gray. The buds are yellowish with glandular scales.
Bark: The bark is brownish and scaly.
Root: Deep-rooting plant, root suckering
Location: Sun to half-shade
Soil: humid and tolerates poor soils
ph value: slightly acidic – slightly alkaline
Usage: single tree

Bitternut is used for lumber and pulpwood. Because bitternut hickory wood is hard and durable, it is used for furniture, paneling, dowels, tool handles and ladders. Like other hickories, the wood is used for smoking meat, and by Native Americans for making bows. Bitternut hickory seeds are eaten by rabbits, and both its seeds and bark are eaten by other wildlife.

Field Observations: 

Easily recognized by the sulfur yellow terminal buds.  Nuts are sheathed by a thin, papery husk.

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