The Shumard or Southern Red Oak is native to the bottomland areas of the southeastern U. S. It can be found from North Carolina down to Florida and Texas, as far west as Missouri and eastern Kansas, and north into southern Illinois and Kentucky. A few individual specimens have been seen in southwestern Ontario and into the eastern Niagara peninsula.
While the Shumard Oak is relatively drought tolerant and deals well in urban settings, it seems best suited for clay soils in poorly drained areas. asically a bottomland hardwood tree. Prefers full sun.
Can grow to a mature height of 75 – 90 ft. with a spread of about 35 – 60 ft. The tree takes on a symmetrical shape with a relatively open crown area.
Points of Interest
- Its closed-grain, hard and heavy wood if generally marketed for furniture, flooring, interior trim and veneer, lumber and especially valuable for cabinetry.
- A wide variety of songbirds, wild turkey, squirrels, deer and other mammals eat the acorns from this tree.
- The bitter, yet edible acorns are useful if you take steps to remove the tannin. They have been ground to make flour, roasted to make coffee and can be eaten whole.
- It is a long lived tree, with the oldest known being about 480 years old. Older trees have long since been cut for lumber.