California Gardens - The Year Round Gardening Site

Quercus lobata - Valley Oak

Quercus lobata can attain a height and spread of nearly 100 feet. The deeply lobed leaves, large acorns and cobbled bark are prime characteristics of the Valley Oak. Quercus lobata can be found on the valley floor where it has access to groundwater. Quercus lobata produces its acorns from late Summer into Fall. The Valley Oak is more threatened than the other species as the flat area in most valleys where it resides is so frequently used for agriculture and houses. The new foliage of the Valley Oak is a pale dusty pink. Quercus lobata is one of the most stately of our California native trees. The root zone of the Valley Oak extends well beyond the reach of its branches. Care should be taken when planting or constructing under Quercus lobata to avoid damaging the root system. On the hottest days oaks suck up so much water that they can destabilize large branches which in turn come crashing down. Quercus lobata is a host plant for the Mournful Duskywing butterfly.

High resolution photos of Quercus lobata are part of our garden image collection.

Quercus lobata, Valley Oak