Quercus wislizeni A. DC. var. wislizeni

Interior Live Oak
Fagaceae (Oak Family)


Interior live oak, var. wislizeni, is the tree form of Quercus wislizeni, evergreen, with a rounded top and smooth bark aging to broadly ridged, and growing to some 60' tall. The leaf blade is from 3/4" to 2" long, rather firm, entire-margined to spiny-toothed, mostly oblong to elliptic or lanceolate, and glabrous and shining both above and below but lighter yellow-green on the undersurface.  The petioles are 1/4" to 1/2" long.  The male flowers are in catkins about 1" to 2-1/4" long and the pistillate flowers are solitary in many-bracted involucres in the upper leaf axils.  The fruit is an acorn with a cup 1/2" to 11/16" wide and an ovoid to obconic nut that is tapered to the tip and 3/4" to 1-1/2" long, maturing the second year.  This live oak may be found in interior canyons, slopes and valleys in chaparral and foothill woodland to 6000', blooming March to May. I am doubtful of the validity of the distinction between var. wislizenii and var. frutescens. It seems more likely to me that they are merely forms reflecting a different life stage..

Click here for Latin name derivations: 1) Quercus 2) wislizeni.
Pronunciation: KWER-kus wis-liz-EN-ee-eye.
Click here for Botanical Term Meanings.