Quercus suber
KWER-kus SOO-ber

Cork Oak
Fagaceae (Beech family)
Origin: Mediterranean Europe, 1699

 

 

 

 

©Street Tree Division
City of Los Angeles - Department of Public Works
Bureau of Street Services

Species characteristics:
Form - Evergreen. Moderate growth, compact to open, reaching 60' and a spread of 40'. The irregular branches form a broad, slightly asymmetrical crown.

Trunk - Whitish trunk and major limbs are covered with thick deeply fissured, corky bark. This tree is the source of commercial cork.

Foliage - Leaves are lanceolate, 3" long, 3/4 - 1 1/4" wide, with toothed margins, shiny dark green above, white or gray, downy on the underside.

Flowers/fruit - Flowers that appear in April or May are of separate sexes; males in long pendulous catkins; females in erect spikes with 2 - 5 flowers. Fruit is a typical acorn, with a cup of gray, fringed scales enclosing one third to one half of the 1/2 - 1" long nut.

Significant pest problems are California oak worm, oak anthracnose and Armillaria root rot.

Site suitability:

Sunset zones - 5 - 7 (with possible winter damage), 8 - 16, and 18 - 23.

Clearances - Suitable for 7' minimum parkways, medians or cutouts.

Good for street sides, medians, parks and lawns.

Culture considerations:
Will tolerate most soil types and acid conditions. Will tend to yellow in alkaline soils. Very tolerant of drought conditions and heat, once established. Prefers well drained soil.

Comments, notes:
One of the best oaks for desert use.