Shumard Oak

Quercus Shumardii

Description:


The Shumard oak is considered a late-dropping oak, with some trees dropping acorns in November or December. However, some trees may drop very early, making it an important early season food source for deer. Acorn production is fairly reliable from one year to the next, with the occasional bumper crop. Because of this, Shumard oak may be a valuable food source for wildlife throughout the entire fall and winter. Acorns are bitter, but not as bitter as some other red oaks.

Distribution:


Central and eastern US and southern Canada. West to Texas, north to Canada, south to northern Florida.


Distribution Map

Habitat:


Uplands and bottomlands. Can tolerate a wide range of habitat, but is often found near streams and rivers. Prefers rich soil; often found in areas with limestone.

Leaf:


Shiny green; 5 to 9 lobes, with deep, rounded sinuses. Leaf is often as wide as it is long. Underside of leaf has tufts of brown hairs between the midvein and side veins. 

Shumard Oak

Bark:


Gray, fissured or furrowed, ranging from somewhat smooth to deeply furrowed on older trees. Bark of young trees is very smooth and becomes fissured with age.

Shumard Oak

Acorn:


Medium to large, 3/4" to 1 1/4" with a scaly cap covering 1/4 to 1/3 of the nut.

Shumard Oak

Gallery

Look-alike oaks:


Scarlet Oak - leaves are similar; however, scarlet oak leaves are usually longer with larger sinuses than those of Shumard oak. Underside of Shumard oak leaves have tufts of brown hairs between the veins, while scarlet oak may only have a few light hairs. Bark of Shumard oak is lighter gray and smoother.


Black Oak - Bark of black oak is usually darker and more deeply fissured. Leaves of Shumard oak usually have deeper sinuses than those of black oak. Black oak leaves do not have the tufts of brown hairs between the veins on the underside, and are usually larger.


Northern Red Oak - Acorns may be similar in appearance, but bark and leaves are not. Northern red oak bark is usually darker, with pale gray flat ridges resembling ski tracks. Northern red oak leaves have much shallower sinuses than those of Shumard oak.