Pedunculate oak (POK)

Quercus robur

Native range

Native to the British Isles except the far north, and to much of Europe. Has been planted in parts of western Britain where sessile oak might be better suited.

Provenance choice

Material from selected British or north-west European seed stands are to be preferred.

Site requirements

Considered to be more light demanding than sessile oak. Windfirm, and cold hardy but is susceptible to damage by late spring frost at young age. Prefers soils in the medium to rich nutrient status; prefers heavy and moist soils and can tolerate some waterlogging provided such soils do not dry out in summer. Its ability to root in to heavier soils is ecologically valuable for its structure-improving and drainage effects.

Pests and pathogens

Oak dieback frequently affects pedunculate oak, causing chronic decline that may extend over decades. One of diseases that may play a role in oak decline is mildew, which varies in intensity from year to year. More recently, a disorder known as Acute Oak Decline which results rapid dieback and mortality, has become apparent on mature trees in mid and south east England.

Acorns of pedunculate oak are often affected by knopper gall, leading to acorn deformation and abortion. Oak processionary moth, a major defoliator, is a native species of central and southern Europe, where it is widely distributed and is a significant threat. Its range has been expanding northwards, presumably in response to climate change. It is now firmly established in northern France and the Netherlands, and has been reported from southern Sweden, and more recently, colonies of larvae have been found in parts of London.

Use

A species likely to benefit from climate change in terms of greater productivity and more frequent seed years, but which may suffer on sites prone to summer drought.