Red Oak - Quercus rubra


It is a tall fast growing tree with leaves that can be up to 22 cm long. They have a few lobes each with several teeth which have pointed whiskery tips. In summer the leaves are dark green, but paler underneath. In autumn the leaves turn a spectacular red colour. Like other oaks the flower is a catkin and the fruiting body or seed is an acorn. The trunk is smooth in young specimens and may stay smooth, but can develop a rougher texture with age.

Identification difficulty

Often planted in parks and gardens with a few examples in wooded areas.

When to see it

All year round, but the display of red leaves occurs in autumn.

Life History


UK Status

Widespread and fairly frequent in Britain, though mainly as a planted species.

VC55 Status

Occasional in Leicestershire and Rutland where it occurs mainly as a planted species. It was not recorded in the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map