Plant Search

The Growing Place


Northern Pin Oak

Quercus ellipsoidalis

Add To My Wish List

print page
Northern Pin Oak (Quercus ellipsoidalis) at The Growing Place

Northern Pin Oak

Northern Pin Oak

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Northern Pin Oak (Quercus ellipsoidalis) at The Growing Place

Northern Pin Oak in fall

Northern Pin Oak in fall

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  60 feet

Spread:  45 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  3a

Other Names:  Hill's Oak


Great specimen for a lawn or street tree; foliage emerges brick red in spring, ages to dark green then turns a spectacular red-burgundy in fall; can handle compacted, alkaline soils

Growing Place Choice Plants

Our Growing Place Choice plants are chosen because they are strong performers year after year, staying attractive with less maintenance when planted in the right place.

Click here for additional information.

Ornamental Features

Northern Pin Oak has dark green foliage which emerges brick red in spring. The spiny lobed leaves turn an outstanding brick red in the fall. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant. However, the fruit can be messy in the landscape and may require occasional clean-up. The furrowed gray bark and silver branches add an interesting dimension to the landscape.

Landscape Attributes

Northern Pin Oak is a deciduous tree with a more or less rounded form. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This tree will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. It is a good choice for attracting squirrels to your yard. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Northern Pin Oak is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Shade

Planting & Growing

Northern Pin Oak will grow to be about 60 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 45 feet. It has a high canopy with a typical clearance of 6 feet from the ground, and should not be planted underneath power lines. As it matures, the lower branches of this tree can be strategically removed to create a high enough canopy to support unobstructed human traffic underneath. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live to a ripe old age of 100 years or more; think of this as a heritage tree for future generations!

This tree should only be grown in full sunlight. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under average home landscape conditions. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This species is native to parts of North America.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Fall Color  Bark  Winter Value  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features