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Dwarf live oak
Quercus minima
Fagaceae


General Landscape Uses:

Primarily recommended for natural landscapes and habitat restorations.

Ecological Restoration Notes:

A frequent but somewhat uncommon understory shrub in pine rocklands, mesic flatwoods, scrubby flatwoods, sandhill and dry prairie.
Availability:
Grown by enthusiasts and occasionally by native plant nurseries.
Description:
Small woody groundcover with branches usually to 3 feet or less and numerous underground stems. Leaves are 1-4 inches long.
Dimensions:
Typically 6-18 inches in height; to about 3 feet in South Florida. Spreading and forming patches broader than tall.
Growth Rate:
Slow.
Range:
Southeastern United States south to Miami-Dade and Collier counties.
Habitats:
Pinelands.
Soils:
Moist, well-drained sandy or limestone soils, without humusy top layer.
Nutritional Requirements:
Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.
Salt Water Tolerance:
Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.
Salt Wind Tolerance:
Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.
Drought Tolerance:
High; does not require any supplemental water once established.
Light Requirements:
Full sun.
Flower Color:
Green.
Flower Characteristics:
Inconspicuous. Pollination is by wind.
Flowering Season:
Early spring, before the emergence of new leaves.
Fruit:
Pale brown acorn about 2/3" long. Edible.
Wildlife and Ecology:
Provides food and cover for wildlife. Larval host plant for red-banded hairstreak (Calycopis cecrops) and white-M hairstreak (Parrhasius m-album) butterflies; possible larval host for Horace's duskywing (Erynnis horatius), Juvenal's duskywing (Erynnis juvenalis) and oak hairstreak (Fixsenia favonius) butterflies. The acorns are utilized by squirrels.
Horticultural Notes:
Can be grown from seed.
Comments:
This miniature oak makes an excellent groundcover but has not received much attention in the native plant trade.


 


Steven W. Woodmansee
Steven W. Woodmansee
Shirley Denton
Shirley Denton
Shirley Denton
Shirley Denton