The Maryland Native Plant Society


From tiny acorn to bountiful tree, perhaps no other woody plant has inspired humanity like the oak. Join the Maryland Native Plant Society this year as we explore the diversity and wonder of oaks. Throughout 2012, MNPS field trips, workshops, and lectures will focus on oak identification, the importance of oaks in the Mid-Atlantic ecosystem, and their value for humans and wildlife. The native white oak (Quercus alba), Maryland’s official tree, is just one of 21 species of oaks native to Maryland. These 21 oaks are essential components of Maryland’s forests, rural open spaces, cities and towns, from the sandy Coastal Plain in the east, through the hilly Piedmont provinces to the summits of the western mountains. Please join us as we focus on learning all we can about the remarkable oaks of Maryland!

Native Oaks of Maryland

White Oak Group

  • White Oak (Quercus alba)
  • Chestnut Oak (Quercus prinus; syn. Q. montana)
  • Post Oak (Quercus stellata)
  • Bur Oak (Mossycup Oak) (Quercus macrocarpa)
  • Swamp White Oak (Quercus bicolor)
  • Chinquapin or Chinkapin Oak (Yellow Oak) (Quercus muehlenbergii)
  • Dwarf Chinquapin Oak (Quercus prinoides)
  • Swamp Chestnut Oak (Basket Oak) (Quercus michauxii)
  • Overcup Oak (Quercus lyrata)

Red or Black Oak Group

  • Red Oak (Northern Red Oak) (Quercus rubra)
  • Black Oak (Quercus velutina)
  • Southern Red Oak (Quercus falcata)
  • Scarlet Oak (Quercus coccinea)
  • Pin Oak (Quercus palustris)
  • Blackjack Oak (Quercus marilandica)
  • Bear Oak (Scrub Oak) (Quercus ilicifolia)
  • Willow Oak (Quercus phellos)
  • Shingle Oak (Quercus imbricaria)
  • Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
  • Water Oak (Quercus nigra)
  • Cherry Bark Oak (Pagoda Oak) (Quercus pagoda)
Native Oaks of Maryland (PDF, ~66 KB)

The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

A village is not complete, unless it have these trees to mark the season in it.  They are important, like the town clock . . . . .  Let us have willows for spring, elms for summer, maples and walnuts and tupelos for autumn, evergreens for winter, and oaks for all seasons.   --Henry David Thoreau

Swamp Chestnut Oak (Quercus michauxii), River Trail, Great Falls Park, Montgomery County, MD, April 21, 2017.

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