Monday, May 21, 2018

Quercus robur or European oak

Although not widely-used in the United States, the tree appears to be very drought-tolerant and could be used more extensively, particularly in climates such as west Texas with low humidity where powdery mildew may not be a big problem. It also grows well in a wide range of soil from acid to alkaline.

Quercus robur is commonly seen throughout British woodlands, parks and gardens and is native to Europe and parts of Northern Africa. It is a large, deciduous tree with a broad crown of strong branches.

Also called pedunculate or common oak, it is a deciduous tree which can grow to 40 meters in height and can live for more than a thousand years.

Flowering occurs mid spring in the form of catkins and the acorns following this are borne on long stems, called penduncles, ripening in the autumn. The leaves have 4-5 deep, smooth edged lobes on either side with two smaller ones where it joins the stalk. The fruit, acorns, are produced in autumn; they are 2-2.5cm long and sit on stalks.

Wood, bark and leaves of Quercus robur are known to accumulate high quantities of polyphenols, which are mainly hexahydroxydiphenoylesters (ellagitannms) and proanthocyanidins (condensed tannins).

Climate change, as well as biotic and abiotic stress environmental factors and the exploitation of oak forests have the greatest impact in reducing the Quercus robur areas. These factors on one side reduce the Quercus robur living area, while on the other side they create unfavorable conditions for its renewal.
Quercus robur or European oak
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