Dwarf Post Oak
The Quercus Stellata
is commonly known as Bottom-land Post Oak
, Bottomland Post Oak
, Boynton Post Oak
, Cross Oak
, Delta Post Oak
, Drummond Post Oak
, Dwarf Post Oak
, Iron Oak
, Mississippi Valley Oak
, Post Oak
, Runner Oak
, Sand Post Oak
, Sandhill Post Oak
, Scrubby Post Oak
, as well as Yellow Oak< Go Back
Post oak is widespread in the eastern and central United States from
southeastern Massachusetts, Rhode Island, southern Connecticut, and
extreme southeastern New York; south to central Florida; and west to
southeastern Kansas, western Oklahoma, and central Texas. In the
Midwest, it grows as far north as southeastern Iowa, central Illinois,
and southern Indiana. It is an abundant tree in coastal plains and the
Piedmont and extends into the lower slopes of the Appalachian Mountains
Sand post oak occurs from southeastern Virginia south to central Florida
and west to Missouri, eastern Oklahoma, and south and central Texas
]. It is most common on coastal plains and is scattered in the
Delta post oak occurs in bottomlands in eastern Texas and in the
Mississippi River valley in western Mississippi, southeastern Arkansas,
and Louisiana [47
The currently accepted scientific name of post oak is Quercus stellata
]. Post oak has been placed within the subgenus
Lepidobalanus, or white oak group [59
The following three varieties are recognized [30
Quercus stellata var. margaretta (Ashe) Sarg., sand post oak
Quercus stellata var. paludosa Sarg., Delta post oak
Quercus stellata var. stellata, post oak
Identification of post oak is difficult because of its many growth
forms. At times, local populations have been given species or varietal
status. A rhizomatous dwarf post oak that grows near Lufkin, Texas, is
called Boynton post oak (Q. boyntonii). Drummond post oak, which grows
in deep sands of Texas, is thought to be a hybrid between post oak and
sand post oak [46
]. It has also been considered a species (Q.
drummondii) by some authors [13
Post oak hybridizes with the following species [30
x Q. alba (white oak): Q. X fernowii Trel.
x Q. bicolor (swamp white oak): Q. X substellata Trel.
x Q. durandii (Durand oak): Q. X macnabiana Sudw.
x Q. havardii (Havard oak)
x Q. lyrata (overcup oak): Q. X sterrettii Trel.
x Q. macrocarpa (bur oak): Q. X guadalupensis Sarg.
x Q. minima (dwarf live oak): Q. X neo-tharpii A. Camus
x Q. mohriana (Mohr oak)
x Q. prinoides (dwarf chinkapin oak): Q. X stelloides Palmer
x Q. prinus (chestnut oak): Q. X bernardiensis W. Wolf
x Q. virginiana (live oak): Q. X harbisonii Sarg.
Post oak occurs as a dominant tree in savannas and in forests adjacent
to grasslands. It forms pure stands or mixed stands with blackjack oak
(Quercus marilandica) in the prairie transition area of central Oklahoma
and Texas, where the eastern deciduous forests grade into the drier
western grasslands [43,47].
Sand post oak codominates with bluejack oak (Q. incana) and blackjack
oak on the slightly more mesic midslopes of sandhills, downslope from
the xeric ridges that support turkey oak (Q. laevis) .
The following published classifications list post oak as a dominant or
Forest vegetation of the lower Alabama Piedmont 
The natural communitites of South Carolina 
Forest vegetation of the Big thicket, southeast Texas 
Eastern Deciduous Forest 
Old-growth forests within the Piedmont of South Carolina 
The natural forests of Maryland: an explanation of the vegetation map of
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Much of the information presented here is attributed to:
Carey, Jennifer H. 1992. Quercus stellata. In: Fire Effects Information System, [Online].
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service,
Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). Available at USDA Forest Service.