“Stately and upright, Skyrocket English oak has strong, dense branches on its narrowed, tight canopy. A deciduous tree native to Europe and western Asia, it has bark that is ridged and furrowed, rich brown to gray-black in color and demonstrates better resistance to the mildew that negatively affects other English oaks.
The wavy-edged leaves are oblong with very short stems with few to many lobes. They are glossy dark green with a lighter green underside, first emerging very downy in late spring. As the leave emerge, the pendent male flower spikes, called catkins, line the ends of branches. Soon after the pollen shedding ends, the small rounded female blossoms open at the bases of new leaves on new twig growth. Once pollinated, the female flowers develop into oblong oval fruits called acorns, singly or in clusters up to five in number. The leaves in autumn are held very late on the branches, and rarely create any display of impressive color by simply turning yellowish brown. Large birds, such as ducks, crows and quail, will use the acorns as food, as well as many rodents and small mammals.
Plant Skyrocket English oak in a moist, well-drained soil that is quite fertile for most robust growth. Amazingly, this species is very tolerant of both dry and very alkaline soils, too. The narrow growth form is well-suited to average landscapes, but can still slowly grow into an impressive tower, perhaps out of scale with many residential buildings. Nonetheless, it can be grown as a very tall and imposing screen or street tree to create an allée, or as a specimen. Very cold winters result in young branch dieback. This selections is highly resistant to mildew that normally plagues this tree species in warm climates.”
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