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Island Oak

Quercus tomentella

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Island Oak (Quercus tomentella) at Roger's Gardens

Island Oak foliage

Island Oak foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  60 feet

Spread:  30 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  7a

Other Names:  Island Live Oak, Channel Island Oak


A conical evergreen tree when young that takes on a broader mature form; attractive foliage is leathery, dark green and glossy, with blue-green undersides; suitable as a windbreak or large screen, making it valuable in urban and garden settings

Ornamental Features

Island Oak has attractive dark green foliage with bluish-green undersides on a tree with a pyramidal habit of growth. The glossy oval leaves are highly ornamental and remain dark green throughout the winter. However, the fruit can be messy in the landscape and may require occasional clean-up.

Landscape Attributes

Island Oak is a dense multi-stemmed evergreen tree with a distinctive and refined pyramidal form. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This tree will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. It is a good choice for attracting birds and squirrels to your yard. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;

  • Messy

Island Oak is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Shade
  • Vertical Accent
  • Windbreaks and Shelterbelts

Planting & Growing

Island Oak will grow to be about 60 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 30 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 2 feet from the ground, and should not be planted underneath power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live to a ripe old age of 150 years or more; think of this as a heritage tree for future generations!

This tree should only be grown in full sunlight. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under average home landscape conditions. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This species is native to parts of North America.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Shade  Articulation  Windbreak 
Foliage Color  Winter Value  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features