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Quercus mongolica Fisch.

Modern name

Quercus mongolica Fisch. ex Ledeb.

This species is mainly represented in cultivation by the following variety:

var. grosseserrata (Bl.) Rehd. & Wils. Q. grosseserrata Bl.; Q. crispula Bl. – A large deciduous tree 80 to 100 ft high; young shoots irregularly furnished with pale warts, but not downy. Leaves obovate, 4 to 9 in. long, 212 to 512 in. wide, tapered to a pair of auricles at the base, pointed at the apex, ten to fifteen teeth on each margin, the largest from 12 to 34 in. deep, triangular, and again toothed, dark, rather glossy green above, pale beneath, glabrous except on the midrib and veins, which are more or less downy on both surfaces; stalk 18 to 13 in. long, glabrous. Fruits one to three on a short stalk; acorn about one- third enclosed in the hemispherical cup.

Native of Japan, Sakhalin, and the southern Kuriles; introduced to Kew in 1893 by means of seeds collected by Prof. Sargent during his visit to Japan in the autumn of that year. Although it appears to be quite hardy in this country, this oak does not thrive so well with us as it does in the eastern United States. In the suburbs of Boston, Mass., and in the Arnold Arboretum trees of the same generation as those at Kew are already remarkably striking for their size, rude vigour, and splendid foliage. Even on young trees in this country I have measured leaves 12 in. by 7 in., but on adult trees no doubt they are much smaller.

One of the trees at Kew raised from the seeds collected by Prof. Sargent has developed into a splendid specimen measuring 61 × 634 ft (1972).

Q. mongolica, in its typical state, may not be in cultivation in Britain. It occurs in Japan, Sakhalin, and the S. Kuriles but has its main distribution on the mainland of N.E. Asia; despite the specific epithet it scarcely extends into Mongolia, however. From the above variety it differs in its leaves, with more rounded, entire lobes, and in the very thick, woody scales of the fruit-cups.

From the Supplement (Vol. V)

The fine specimen of var. grosseserrata in the Oak Collection at Kew, raised from the 1893 seed, seems to be the only large example in Britain. It measures 60 × 712 ft (1986).



Other species in the genus