Also known as the mossy-cup oak or blue oak.
Family: Fagaceae [beech], part of the fagoid group [with birches].
Form: large, long-lived tree with lobed leaves, big nuts (acorns); makes open canopy with huge, spreading, knarly limbs; thick bark.
Range: central North America, from eastern Great Plains to Great Lakes region; in Ky., mostly Ohio River lowlands and Bluegrass.
Habitat: woods, wood-pastures and fencerows on deep, moist to damp, base-rich soils (not shallow or rocky); regenerating in edges or openings, saplings survive decades in thickets, but not deep shade.
Consumers: acorns sought by deer, squirrels, turkeys, weevils; plants sometimes browsed but recovery rapid; various pests and diseases damage; older trunks, roots tend to rot on damper sites.
Growing notes: acorns germinate fall or spring; seedlings make large taproot, but readily transplanted; saplings grow fast in full sun.