Tree Blog

Quercus gravesii | Coastal Southern California

Here are a set of Q. gravesii saplings growing in a southern California nursery. In that warm Mediterranean climate, color on this particular strain of Q. gravesii occurs in the winter, in this case in mid-January. This kind of late coloration is typical of trees that are neither truly evergreen, nor truly deciduous. In this case, a practical way to describe this leafing habit is to call it a late deciduous species. In California, it is possible to grow oak trees which have their leaf coloration occur as early as September, and as late as April. For California native deciduous trees, coloration typically occurs in November and December, later than much of the continental US, simply because California native oaks are evolved to a longer growing season than most of the US.

Dave Muffly