Range: Southeastern USA
This is the southern live oak, native to the southeastern United States. It is the most common canopy tree in South Florida, originally found in hardwood hammocks but now planted everywhere. Like many oaks, it is known for its strength, withstanding hurricanes better than most kinds of trees. As live oaks age, they become wider than tall, with magnificent horizontal branches. With gnarly bark, these branches become home to all kinds of epiphytes (air plants) including orchids, bromeliads, and ferns. The oldest known trees are centuries old and have massive trunks larger than 10’ in diameter. The name “live oak” refers to the fact that the trees never lose all their leaves.