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Quercus Virginiana

Southern Live Oak

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Southern live oak tree description

Quercus Virginiana (Southern live oak) is one of more than 600 species of deciduous and evergreen oak trees spread across the Northern Hemisphere; it is a large, sprawling, scenic, long-lived evergreen tree, typically reaching 60 feet (18.29 m), and often with a spread greater than its height. The canopy is dense, and it has dark, thick furrowed bark and large branches. The branches typically support clumps of Spanish moss. The leaves are alternate, simple, stiff, oval, leathery, shiny, dark green, and 3/4 – 6 x 1/2 – 2 inches. Flowers are yellowish-green and inconspicuous.

Furthermore, the fruits are small acorns, oblong, 1/2 – 1 inch long with a cup. Acorns are used for propagation. The wood is hard and heavy and used for frames in shipbuilding. Traditional uses include edible oil from the acorns, bark for dye, and various tree parts for medicine. The tree is hardy, and develops a deep tap root; it can grow in a range of well-drained soils and has no serious pest or disease problems.

Quercus Virginiana tree cultivation

In cultivation, young southern live oak trees need pruning to form a desirable shape. Because of its spreading growth form and height, Quercus Virginiana tree is best grown on large lawns or in parks for shade; with management, it can also be a street tree. Throughout the southwestern US, there are more than a dozen famous specimen live oaks estimated to be hundreds of years old.

Quercus Virginiana (Southern live oak) is a signature tree of the traditional southern plantation house.

🌳More popular and beautiful plants: Silky oak tree

Additional information


25 gal., 45 gal., 65 gal., 100 gal., 200 gal., 300 gal.

Common Name

Southern Live Oak


Southwest Asia

Flowering Season


Salt Tolerance

Moderate Salt Tolerance

Drought Tolerance

High Drought Tolerance

Growth Rate

Slow Growth Rate

Light Requirements

Full Sun to Partial Shade

Flower Color




Plant Type