Common Trees of the North Carolina Piedmont

Stephen M. Seiberling, Alan S. Weakley, and Peter S. White

Quercus stellata Wangenh. Post oak. Synonyms Quercus villosa Walt. Family Fagaceae. ITIS Taxonomic Serial Number 19422. USDA PLANTS Symbol QUST. TROPICOS # 13100132.

Images • Branchlet with leaves. • Individual leaf. • Branchlet with buds. • Close-up of buds. • Herbarium sheet 1. • Herbarium sheet 2. • Herbarium sheet 3. • Herbarium sheet 4.

Detailed Description:

Plant habit and life style. Plants Angiosperms, monoecious, (5–)10–20(–30) m tall.

Stems. Pith continuous. Young twigs (1-year-old or less) brown or gray or orange or reddish-brown or yellow, (2–)3–5 mm wide, pubescent, stellate or tomentose. Twigs (2–4 years old) glabrous or pubescent. Leaf scars half-round, bundle scars numerous, stipule scars inconspicuous, stipule scars not circumferential. Bark of mature trunks checkered or furrowed or ridged.

Buds. Buds axillary or terminal, bud clusters at ends of twigs present, brown or reddish-brown, (2–)3–4(–6) mm long, globose or ovoid or ovoid-conic, blunt or sharp, glabrate or pubescent, bud scales imbricate.

Leaves. Leaves deciduous, simple, petiolate, alternate or spiral, 4–15(–20) cm long, 2–10(–12) cm wide, elliptic or obdeltoid or obovate, leaf margins entire, shallowly lobed or moderately lobed or deeply lobed, pinnately lobed, leaf lobes (3–)5 per leaf, leaf apices rounded, leaf bases attenuate or cordate or cuneate or obtuse. Leaf upper surface green or yellow-green, glabrate or pubescent, stellate. Leaf lower surface brown or gray or yellow-green, pubescent, stellate or stipitate glandular. Leaf venation pinnate, secondary veins on either side of the midvein 3–5. Petioles 0.3–1.5(–3) cm long, pubescent. Stipules present, caducous, not circumferential.

Flowers. Flowering March or April or May or June. Inflorescences axillary, catkins or flowers solitary or spikes, flowers sessile. Flowers unisexual, epigynous. Perianth. Calyx radially symmetric, synsepalous. Sepals (2–)6(–8) per flower, caducous. Corolla absent. Androecium. Stamens (2–)6(–12) per flower, separate. Gynoecium. Ovaries inferior, pistils 1 per flower. Gynoecium syncarpous, 3 carpels per flower, styles 3 per pistil, placentation axile. Other floral features. Hypanthia present, involucres present.

Fruits. Fruits accessory fruits or acorns or nuts, 1–3 cm long, brown, fruit maturation 1 years.

Habitat. Habitat dry-mesic upland forests or mesic upland forests or mixed forest edges or suburban plantings.

Special Diagnostic Characters. Staminate flowers in pendent catkins, pistillate flowers solitary or in few- to many-flowered spikes; pistillate flowers enclosed by a scaly involucre which develops into the acorn cup.

Cite this publication as: ‘Stephen M. Seiberling, Alan S. Weakley, and Peter S. White (2005 onwards). Common Trees of the North Carolina Piedmont: Identification, Descriptions, Illustrations, and Glossary. Version: March 7, 2006. <>’.

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