Notholithocarpus densiflorus var. echinoides
Common name: 
Shrub Tanoak
Shrub Tanbark-oak
notho-lith-o-KAR-pus des-i-FLO-rus ek-eh-noi-dees
Lithocarpus densiflorus
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Broadleaf evergreen shrub, to 10 ft (3 m) high, densely branched, compact.  Leaves oblong, 6-13 cm long, 2-6 cm wide, thick, leathery, scarcely toothed (less than the tree form), shiny light green, whitish beneath.
  • Sun (for a compact habit) or light shade.
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 7
  • This form occurs in the chaparral communities of the mountains of southern Oregon and northern California, especially abundant in the Mount Shasta area.
  • Note:  The scientific name of Tanoak was Lithocarpus densiflorus, but it is now in the genus, Notholithocarpus, hence Notholithocarpus densiflorus. And the Shrub Tanoak is now Notholithocarpus densiflorus var. echinoides. The taxonomic change is based on molecular and other lines of evidence.  Tanoak is not allied to the Asian tropical stone oaks, i.e., Lithocarpus, as once thought, but rather it is more closely linked to the northern temperate oaks, Quercus.

  • echinoides:  from the Greek, echin, meaning a hedgehog or sea urchin, possibly in reference to the bristly caps of the acorns. 

Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit

    plant habit

  • leaves


  • start of flowering

    start of flowering

  • young male catkins

    young male catkins

  • male catkins at pollen release

    male catkins at pollen release