Oak Regeneration: Species, Planting Methods, and Care Information

You are interested in oak regeneration, but what species should you plant?

Click here to find out what oak species (and other native plants) are found in your area (CalScape website).

Click here for information about habitat and ecology of the major California oak trees (our UC Oaks ID tool).

Now you know what species to plant, but what planting method should you use?

Acorns versus seedlings: (Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California see page 17)

How to plant acorns: (Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California  see page 10)

How to plant seedlings you get from a nursery: (Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California  see page 19)

It’s important to note that planting seedlings from nurseries has the risk of bringing new plant diseases into your rangelands and forests (see page 1, 2)

How to grow your own seedlings: (Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California  see page 21)

Protecting naturally occurring seedlings: “In our experience, blue oak seedlings in the open covered with tree shelters generally grow into saplings in less than a decade. Compared with artificial regeneration techniques, this natural regeneration strategy is more cost efficient and therefore more likely to be widely adopted by California landowners. We estimate that this approach would cost less than half of what it costs to plant seedlings. We feel that using tree shelters and weed control to enhance early growth and survival of naturally occurring blue oak seedlings could significantly improve the regeneration of this important woodland species and promote its long-term conservation.”

How can you protect your oak seedlings?

Protect seedlings from large animals like deer and livestock by using fences, screen cylinders, seedling protection tubes, treeshelters, habitat modification, etc. (Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California see page 39)

Protect seedlings from rodents by weeding (Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California see page 32)

Should you irrigate your oaks?

When you should and should not water your oaks (Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California see page 52)

Irrigating oaks during drought

Where can you get funding for oak regeneration/restoration?

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)

Your local Resource Conservation District (RCD)

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (USFWS) Partners for Fish and Wildlife program

Point Blue Conservation Science’s STRAW program

Most information on this page is from the following three sources:

Regenerating Rangeland Oaks in California

Tree shelters and weed control enhance growth and survival of natural blue oak seedlings