Oaks New Zealand
Oaks New Zealand formed in June 2018 to encourage the planting and utilisation of oak trees in New Zealand. Oak is an important timber species in the northern hemisphere and anecdotal information suggests many species grow faster in New Zealand than their countries of origin. Some initial trials of English oak were established about 70 - 80 years ago but little research and evaluation work has been done since. Join NZFFA »
New Zealand has about 140 of the ~600 species of oaks found worldwide. Some species are commonly planted as farm and amenity trees. Many others are represented in small numbers in botanic gardens, arboretums and a few private collections. It is very difficult and expensive to import new oak genetics into New Zealand. Acorns must be imported through post-entry quarantine and spend up to 2 years there before they are given biosecurity clearance.
Therefore a first priority for Oaks New Zealand is to conserve and fully utilise the genetic resources of oak trees already in New Zealand.
Oaks New Zealand is currently developing the following pilot projects:
- Battle Hill Farm Forest Park, Pauatahanui - planting programme to establish a range of different species and seed orchards over 5 years.
- Longitudinal measurement study of Mexican oak species on dry sites: Guthrie Smith arboretum, Hawkes Bay & Penrith Park, Marlborough.
- Red oak planting trials - East Coast, Hawkes Bay, Wairarapa.
- Selections of precious species with edible, large acorns for food (human nutrition / paleodiet).
Tree Grower articles
- Breeding oaks for the future (Access: NZFFA membership)
Eric Cairns, November 2021
Oaks were widely planted by British and European settlers in mid-1800s. They were experimented with by the early Forest Service at Hanmer, but were generally abandoned in favour of softwoods.…
- Oak Action Group red oak trials (Access: NZFFA membership)
Eric Cairns, Rachel Rose and Kees Weytmans, May 2021
The aim of this study is to demonstrate the growth and timber potential of seven deciduous red oak species on trust-administered land at Eastwoodhill and Rewanui. The red oaks for…
- Oaks - a new special interest group for the NZFFA? (Access: unrestricted)
Kath Hurr, May 2019
Oaks have not featured on the radar in farm forestry circles since the demise of the Hardwood Investigation Group nearly 30 years ago. With the development of new hybrids selected…