Leaves and Trees: Water Oak

Leaves and Trees contributor, Kathryn Kolb took this photograph of Water Oak leaves in her own backyard. She was drawn by the pretty placement and design of the leaves. In her own words, "The very clean, graceful forms and strong sunlight portrayed a warm and bright spirit." Her photographs always entice you to stare a little longer and this lovely moment in time is no exception.  

It's the winter here in the South and although most leaves are long gone, many of you may have noticed these leaves under foot. The Water Oak, which is truly a southeastern tree, loses its leaves later than most other trees, so their colorful "fall" can best be seen in December and January. The spatula-like leaves are fairly easy to identify- rounded at the top and narrow at the base. (some refer to them as 'duck feet') One of my favorites, the Sweetgum tree is often found in the same vicinity as a Water Oak. They're friends...

The Water Oak is plentiful in the South as it finds root in wet areas such as swamps and lakes, yet also likes well drained, even compact soils from Texas all the way to Virginia. It needs a lot of sunshine and is certainly found a lot here in Georgia. Water Oaks were often planted as street trees without any knowledge of how big they can get, (up to 100 feet) which is why, sadly, they are often cut down. But I say, the bigger the better... Thank you for the lovely pics Kathryn. To see more of her inspiring work, just click here.


Photos: Kathryn Kolb   Content: Sweet Peach