Mexican white oak
Quercus polymorpha

Secondary Names:
netleaf white oak, Monterrey oak

Leaf Type: Semi-evergreen
Texas Native:
Tree Description:

A medium-sized oak to 40 feet tall and a trunk to 2 feet in diameter, with a broad, rounded crown.

Range/Site Description:

Naturally occurring only in one known U.S. population, near the Devil's River in Val Verde county, but more common in Mexico. Now planted widely as a landscape tree.


Simple, alternate, 2" to 5" long, highly variable, but often with several shallow lobes or teeth towards the tip. Leaves are thick, leathery, and semi-evergreen, with distinct raised veins on the yellowish underside. New leaves in spring are peach-colored and in colder climates the leaves are late-deciduous and turn yellow-brown.


Male and female flowers borne in spring on the same tree, the male flowers on catkins up to 4" long, the female flowers less conspicuous.


An acorn, maturing in one year, up to 1" long and enclosed one-half by the acorn cup.


Dark to light gray, developing scales and flaky plates, then shallow fissures on older trunks.


Primarily used as a landscape tree in the nursery trade, and often sold as 'Monterrey oak.'

Similar Species:

Netleaf oak (Quercus rugosa) has similar venation on the undersides of leaves, but has obovate leaves and is restricted to high elevations in West Texas.

Interesting Facts:

Only recently discovered in the U.S. (1992) as a native tree species, but widely available in commercial nurseries.

Back   Print results   Print PDF (288 KB)