How to Plant a Sawtooth Oak


The Sawtooth oak tree (Quercus acutissima Carruthers) is a stately shade tree reaching a mature height of 60 feet. The tree is popular due to its rapid growth rate. Since mature trees often do not produce acorns for two decades, many growers plant 1-year-old seedlings, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension. Proper planting of the Sawtooth oak tree reduces stress and increases survivability rates. Since the tree grows enormous, the ideal location is not too close to homes or near power lines.

Step 1

Till the ground 12-inches deep in a sunny location for the Sawtooth oak tree sapling. Till an area approximately 2- to 3-feet wide. Remove all plants, grass and debris from the area eliminating root nutrient competition.

Step 2

Make a mixture of 1 part peat, 2 parts sand and .01 per pound of dirt 10-10-10 slow release fertilizer granules in a wheelbarrow. Spread a 2-inch layer of the mixture on top of the tilled ground.

Step 3

Water the area until the ground is slightly moist. Integrate the mixture into the soil with the garden till for additional soil quality and drainage.

Step 4

Dig a hole in the center of the prepared area, three times the width and depth of the Sawtooth oak tree's potting container.

Step 5

Remove the tree from the container and set it up right into the hole. Backfill the hole with the surrounding dirt. Firm the dirt into place as you backfill with your foot or the end of the shovel.

Step 6

Place a wire tree shelter that is a minimum of 4-feet tall over the newly planted Sawtooth oak tree for protection from deer and other wildlife.

Step 7

Water the tree until the ground is soaked. Allow the water absorption by the ground. Repeat with an additional watering.

Tips and Warnings

  • Never plant a flowerbed or other plants under a Sawtooth oak tree due to the tree's inability to compete for soil nutrients, advises the Alabama Cooperative Extension.

Things You'll Need

  • Sand
  • Peat
  • Granular 10-10-10 time-released fertilizer
  • Garden till
  • Shovel
  • Wire tree shelter


  • Alabama Cooperative Extension: Planting Sawtooth Oak for Wildlife
  • United States Department of Agriculture: Quercus acutissima Carruthers
Keywords: plant sawtooth oak, sawtooth oak sapling, planting sawtooth

About this Author

Lisha Smith writes for several blogs and has freelanced for six years. She has a Bachelor of Arts from UNC-Greensboro in psychology. Smith has self-published several books. Her areas of experience include gardening, cooking, home improvement, pets and mental health.