Sessile Oak - Quercus petraea

    Alt Name
    Durmast Oak

    The Sessile Oak is a large deciduous tree up to 20-40 m tall, and similar to the Pedunculate Oak, with which it overlaps extensively in range. The leaves are 7-14 cm long and 4-8 cm broad, evenly lobed with five to six lobes on each side, and a 1 cm petiole. The flowers are catkins, produced in the spring. The fruit is an acorn which is stalkless 2-3 cm long and 1-2 cm broad.

    Similar Species

    The Sessile Oak is a smaller tree than Pedunculate Oak the stalked leaves and stalkless acorns are good identification characters, as is the absence of distinct lobes at the junction of the lamina and petiole; the presence of stellate leaf hairs confirm an id. The number of lobes on a leaf is too variable to be of any use as an id character.

    The two species hybridise - Quercus x rosacea

    Identification difficulty

    Found in a variety of habitats, and is often seen in upland areas of high rainfall, but will also tolerate dry soils.

    When to see it

    Flowers with young leaves in April & May.

    Life History


    UK Status

    Fairly common and widespread in Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Occasional in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 17 of the 617 tetrads.

    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

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

    UK Map