Chinquapin Oak

Quercus muhlenbergii

Native to eastern North America the chinquapin (or chinkapin) oak is a medium to large sized tree reaching up to 80’ in the wild. The chinquapin oak is a white oak and has very similar bicolor leaves like the swamp white oak. As with all white oak species the leaf tips do not have a bristled tip, but chinquapin leaves do have a gland like structure on the leaf tips, a unique characteristic. Also unique to the chinquapin oak is the flaky bark, similar in appearance to chestnut oak bark but when you rub the bark it will start to flake off, unlike chestnut oaks. Early pioneers used its straight wood to make thousands of miles of fences in the states of Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. Later, the trees were used to fuel the steamships that ran from Pittsburgh to New Orleans. They were also used as railroad ties for the new railroads that crisscrossed the Midwest. Chinquapin oak acorns are the preferred food for wild turkeys, grouse, white-tailed deer, black bears, chipmunks, squirrels.


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