Post Oak

Kurt Elieson

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First Class requirement #6: Identify or show evidence of at least 10 kinds of native plants found in your community.

When you think of a typical oak tree out in the country around Dallas-Fort Worth, you are thinking about a post oak. If you are looking at a field with some cows sitting under the shade of a large tree, it is probably a post oak. The story is that the name comes from commonly using the branches as fence posts. From a distance post oaks can look like broccoli bunches with thick stalks and clumps of green (the effect is best in live 3-D at driving speed). Around town you will generally see post oaks only where they are left over from pre-development. They are rarely planted in yards and parks.

Click on the pictures to see them up close.

Most oak trees have leaves with rounded wobbles that make the leaf wider in some places and thinner in others. The shape of a post oak leaf is often compared to a cross plus an extra pair of rounded lobes near the stem. Do not expect that shape to always be as well defined as in these pictures. Like other oak trees, post oaks grow acorns in late summer.

The last picture on this page is of a bell oak. Bell oaks are very similar to post oaks, except that the leaves are shaped like a bell with a ringer at the bottom.

Page last updated 2011.02.05