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Best White Oak to Plant for Future Timber

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From: Jeffery Main
Connersville, IN
I'm doing some reforesting on old pastures with the primary purpose of future timber sales, secondarily wildlife habitat improvement. I've got walnut, cherry, pecan and chestnut growing in plantation style plantings. I'd like to add white oak to the mix. In your opinion, what is the best white oak cultivar for a Mid West planting that will produce prime straight (veneer grade) timber, along with a fairly fast growth rate (as if that is possible with white oak). :) Sources for seedlings/nuts? IN DNR does have a seedling sales program selling "white oak". Since there are literally hundreds of different kinds of white oak, it's sort of like asking a gardener what is the best green bean to plant. My granddaughter will appreciate your wise choice when the trees mature! P.S. Any sources for resistant 15/16th American (timber) chestnut seed/seedlings?

Extension Message
From: Jay Hayek
Extension Specialist, Forestry
Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences
Hi Jeffrey:

I would stick with the native white oak family species:

white oak (Quercus alba), chinkapin oak (Q. muehlenbergii), and possibly swamp chestnut oak (Q. michauxii). The Indiana DNR nurseries should have all three of those species available for sale.

With regard to blight-resistant American chestnut, I would try contacting the American Chestnut Foundation (

Best of luck!

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