Sessile Oak

Quercus petraea


Sessile Oak is a tall tree that can mainly be found in semi-natural woodlands, especially in the north and west of the UK. It is so-named because its acorns are not held on stalks like those of the English (Pedunculate) Oak, but are attached directly to the outer twigs. It can form quite dense, single-species woodlands when left to grow, but is not as ubiquitous as the English Oak in the rest of the countryside. Sessile Oak timber is not as popular as that of English Oak, but is used for barrel- and cask-making - it gives wine and spirits a particular flavour.

How to identify

Oaks are our most familiar tree, easily recognised by their lobed leaf shape and tell-tale acorns. The Sessile Oak can be distinguished from the English Oak by its taller, narrower shape and by the lack of stalks on its acorns.

Where to find it

More common in the north and west of the UK, particularly in the uplands.


When to find it

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December

How can people help

Our native tree species, such as Sessile Oak, provide important links in the food chain for many animals, as well as areas for shelter and nesting. The Wildlife Trusts recognise the importance of healthy habitats to support all kinds of species throughout the food chain, so look after many nature reserves for the benefit of wildlife. You can help too: volunteer for your local Wildlife Trust and you could be involved in everything from coppicing to craft-making, stockwatching to surveying.

Species information

Common name
Sessile Oak
Latin name
Quercus petraea
Trees and shrubs
Height: 15-30m
Conservation status