Plant an Oak Tree (and other native trees and shrubs)

Hands down, oak trees support more life than any other plant in Lake County – but they're rapidly disappearing from our landscape.

Over 530 species of butterflies and moths are known to use oaks, setting off a rich chain of connections with songbirds and other wildlife. But young oaks have become rare due to invasive species, development and changes to water flow. According to Doug Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants, the best thing we can do for wildlife is plant an oak tree. How nice to know that oaks are most likely to thrive if we plant them while they're still small – less transplant shock for them and less digging for us!

White oak - As long as your yard is not wet and receives 3 to 4 hours of sunshine each day, this oak should do well. Beautiful red autumn color. Its leaves stay on all winter, adding a nice element to your winter landscape. Our state tree.

Red oak – If your yard is shady, this is the oak for you. A few hours of sun each day is all it needs. Rich soil and light shade is best. Fabulous autumn color.

Bur oak - For sunny yards and heavy clay soil, this is your champ. It even survives wind and fire, a true prairie species. Fast grower.

Swamp white oak - Perfect for areas that have standing water in spring or after a heavy rain but that tend to go dry in summer. Gorgeous tree. Does best in moist to wet soils with plenty of sunshine.

Black oak – Perfect choice for sandy or gravelly sites that receive a lot of sunshine.

Looking for other trees and shrubs? Here's a complete list of native trees and shrubs to add to your ecofriendly landscaping! Lake County Native Trees and Shrubs