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How to Space Oak Trees

By Kathryn Hatter ; Updated September 21, 2017

Oak trees are native deciduous trees that are members of the beech tree family. When you plant an oak tree properly in an area that will provide adequate nourishment, water and light, it could grow for hundreds of years. Space oak trees properly, depending upon whether you desire a thick canopy of oak trees or specimen trees. Proper oak tree spacing will also ensure the lasting health of the trees.

Determine the location where you will plant the oak trees and the number of oak trees you will plant, because this will affect the spacing of the oak trees. If you are planting a number of oak trees among other existing trees, space the oak trees further apart. If you are planting numerous oak trees in a brand new planting area that is open, plant the trees closer together so they will grow and mature to provide shade. If you are planting specimen oak trees that will grow as single trees, space the tree approximately 20 feet away from any other tree or shrub.

Make a mark with the shovel in the soil in every spot where you will plant an oak tree. When you are planting oak trees in an existing forest site, space the oak trees between 20 and 25 feet apart. When you are planting oak trees in an open area without other trees, plant each oak tree approximately five feet apart in rows that are 10 feet apart.

Dig holes for the oak tree saplings that are twice as wide as the root systems and deep enough so the oak tree saplings will be at the same depth as they were in the temporary containers. Trim the top growth and the roots of the oak tree saplings so each is approximately eight inches long. This will enable the new oak trees to begin growing in a balanced state with the top growth and the root growth being equal.


Things You Will Need

  • Tape measure
  • Shovel
  • Oak tree saplings

About the Author


Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.