At Native Forest Nursery we grow bare root seedlings and #3 container trees. Our container trees are grown in a #3 air pruned pot. This root making container eliminates nearly all potential for root wrapping. This allows for an excellent root structure and delivers an extremely healthy tree. The bare root seedlings at our nursery are grown in a sandy loam soil with high organic matter content, which provides an extremely healthy environment for our seedlings. Our bare root liners and seedlings are hand lifted, packaged, and kept in cold storage until you are ready to plant. Conservation uses for our products include reclamation, mitigation, reforestation, restoration, wildlife habitat improvement and wetland uses. Horticultural uses for our products include field liners, container liners, landscape plantings, budding stock, grafting stock and ornamental uses.

Family: Fagaceae
Latin Name: Quercus prinus
Foliage: Dark green
Fall Foliage: Yellow-brown
Bloom: Yellowish-green
Bloom Time: April to May
Shape: Irregular to round
Bark: Dark brown to black and coarsely furrowed
Sun: Full sun
Zone: Zone 4 to Zone 8
Size: 50 to 70 feet
Spread: 50 to 70 feet
Care: Medium to dry, well drained soil

Native to the eastern United States, Quercus Prinus—commonly known as the Chestnut Oak—is one of the most significant ridgetop trees in its inherent region. This species is widespread from Maine to Mississippi, and can be found as far northwest as Michigan. Due to its frequent occurrence in rocky environments and hilly outcrops, the Chestnut Oak also goes by the epithet “Rock Oak”.

The Chestnut Oak is nothing if not resilient. With a 4-8 hardiness zone rating, it is irrepressible and adaptable to difficult conditions, in part due to a very strong and well-developed taproot. This specimen is easily identified by its bark: intensely ridged with a big blocky pattern, colored brownish-black with occasional silvery undertones, and wrapping the thickest trunk of all the nation’s eastern oak varieties. This species’ foliage strongly resembles that of the Chinkapin Oak; the Chestnut Oak’s leaves are similarly dark green, long, and broad with shallow rounded lobes. The canopy culminates in an irregular or rounded peak, and its leaves lighten to buttery yellow and coffee-toned hues in the autumn. Like most other members of the Fagaceae family, the Chestnut Oak’s yellowish-green catkins appear from April to May, later giving way to the tree’s annual production of large, lightly fringed, brownish-tan nuts.

Imperial and hardy, the Chestnut Oak is prized as an enduring shade tree and an attractive ornamental specimen. To reach its optimal growth and wellbeing, this tree is best cultivated in environments that enable access to full sun and contain medium to dry, well-drained soils. It is not typically considered among the tallest oak varieties, since it grows to a height of approximately 50-70 ft. with a respective spread, but any growth stunt is typically attributed to the buffeting winds and the dry conditions of the montane grounds which this species favors. Given the most optimal conditions, however, the Chestnut Oak can in fact match the heights of its taller oak counterparts; the current national champion can be found in Tennessee’s Great Smoky Mountains National Park, rearing up to a tremendous height of 144 ft.

Native Forest Nursery Photos:

Mature Tree Photos: