Southern Live Oak

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Stipple engraving showing leaves and acorns of the southern live oak (Quercus virginiana), an evergreen tree in the family Fagaceae native to North America. This tree is described as follows by the author:

The live oak is commonly 40 or 45 feet (12 or 14 m) in height, and from 1 to 2 feet (0.3 to 0.6 m) in diameter; but it is sometimes much larger: Mr. S., president of the Agricultural Society of Charleston, assured me that he had felled a trunk, hollowed by age, which was 24 feet (7 m) in circumference. Like most other trees, it has, when insulated, a wide and tufted summit. Its trunk is sometimes undivided for 18 or 20 feet (5.5 or 6 m), but often ramifies at half this height, and at a distance it has the appearance of an old apple tree or pear tree. The leaves are oval, coriaceous, of a dark green above and whitish beneath: they persist during several years, and are partially renewed every spring. On trees reared upon plantations, or growing in cool soils, they are one half larger, and are often denticulated: upon stocks of two or three years they are commonly very distinctly toothed.

Translation by Augustus Lucas Hillhouse.

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