Oaktopia

Tree Blog

Quercus hypoleucoides | Portland

The Silverleaf Oak is one of the most widely distributed and widely adapted oaks of the American Southwest. Typically small to medium in size, with tiny acorns, an upright growth habit, and excellent drought tolerance, it seems a tree worthy of consideration for use in urban California. One of the oldest known urban specimens on the west coast of the US is in Portland, at Hoyt Arboretum as shown here in a photo taken in 2010. Finding a tree from the arid Southwest growing in notoriously soggy Portland was certainly a surprise. To see it thriving was a further surprise. If the tree proves sustainable over the decades in Portland, it will be a testament to a stunning range of adaptability for a relatively homogenous oak species.

Dave Muffly