Our Native trees – English Oak (Quercus Robur)

The much loved English Oak (Quercus Robur) or Pendunculate Oak as it is now known is abundant and widespread in our in our countryside. When mature it is a very large tree (up to 36m or 120ft tall) and can reach a ripe old 800 years old in very mature specimens. A mature oak can absorb up to 450 Litres or 100 gallons of water a day in summer. The Pendunculate Oak  differs from sessile oak (Quercus petraea) in the fact that it has acorns on stalks. The oak doesn’t start to produce acorns until it reaches 40 years of age. The wood of the Oak tree is immensely strong and was the timber of choice for traditional timber framed buildings. It was also used for the construction of ships in a time when Britannia still ruled the waves.

New oak trees are best planted with at least 25m of space around them and they are not suited to a garden environment.  This allows the tree to grow naturally and not be subject to pruning operations, which ruin its true character.  The oak is under attack in the UK from diseases such as Sudden Oak Death (Phytophthora ramorum). Also the pest species the Oak Processionary Moth (OPM) The caterpillars of this moth are particularly hazardous and cause very nasty skin irritation if touched.

For further information or advice on oak trees, their care and planting please feel free to give us a call or drop us a line via e mail

Some useful links to Oak diseases can be found here

Sudden Oak Death:    http://www.forestry.gov.uk/pdf/EPAversion3.pdf/$FILE/EPAversion3.pdf

OPM:http://www.forestry.gov.uk/pdf/fr_advice_note_oak_processionary_moth.pdf/$FILE/fr_advice_note_oak_processionary_moth.pdf