Diamond Leaf Oak, Swamp Laurel Oak, Darlington Oak

Quercus laurifolia

Family: Fagaceae (fag-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Quercus (KWER-kus) (Info)
Species: laurifolia (law-ree-FOH-lee-uh) (Info)
Synonym:Quercus hemisphaerica
Synonym:Quercus obtusa
Synonym:Quercus phellos var. laurifolia
Synonym:Quercus succulenta



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


over 40 ft. (12 m)


over 40 ft. (12 m)


USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Pollen may cause allergic reaction

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Mid Spring


Grown for foliage



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:

Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Auburndale, Florida

Bartow, Florida

Dunnellon, Florida

Fort White, Florida

Kissimmee, Florida

Oldsmar, Florida

Pensacola, Florida

Port Saint Lucie, Florida

Saint Petersburg, Florida

Sebring, Florida

Winter Springs, Florida

Christiana, Tennessee

Knoxville, Tennessee

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 8, 2012, HL_Nursery777 from Dunnellon, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

Simi-Evergreen. Lifespan is normally no longer than 80 years in the wild, due to the fact that when it is not under human care, and it rots down the trunk from bad wounds in the past. Under a keen eye, this tree may live for a long time. It also makes a great wildlife tree. In the red oak family. I have acorns of this to trade. (Depends on season.) Grows Here in Central Florida, Zone 9a everywhere!


On Jan 11, 2006, CindyDale from Saint Petersburg, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

It was a small tree in the yard planted by the previous owners when we moved here 10 years ago. It grew fast. I didn't know about the need to prune it down to one trunk so it will need to be bolted in about 20 years or so to keep it safe from heavy winds, according to an arborist who came here to take a look at it for me. It needs regular pruning to keep it out of the way of things and to thin it out to keep it safe from strong winds. It does give good shade on the south side of the house.


On Mar 16, 2005, xyris from Sebring, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

Regarding hurricane damage, most of the uprooted oaks I have seen this year are the UPLAND laurel oak (Quercus hemisphaerica), which is often planted as a street and yard tree in central Florida. In irrigated yards they grow too fast, and get top-heavy, shallow-rooted and weak, as compared to the growth of the species in its native xeric hammock habitats.

However, I really like my swamp laurel oak, true Quercus laurifolia, growing at the edge of the yard in an area that has had standing water for at least four to six months in the past year. It survived the hurricanes (while the Quercus virginiana near it toppled), and has large (4 to 6 inch long, over 1 inch wide) light yellow-green new leaves this month.


On Mar 1, 2005, NativePlantFan9 from Boca Raton, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

Laurel Oak, Diamondleaf Oak, Swamp Laurel or Darlington Oak (Quercus laurifolia) is native to swamps, bottomlands, and wet, moist sites in the southeastern United States from southeastern Virginia and parts of the Mid-Atlantic region south through Florida, westward into Texas (zones 6a to 10b). It provides food and shelter for wildlife. However, it is a very poor tree for wind tolerance. Many of these trees in central and northern (even in parts of southern Florida and probably in other states) fell during the 2004 hurricanes (Charley, Ivan, Jeanne and Frances). They often became entirely uprooted by winds as low even as around 50 to 70 mph. They can cause serious damage (and potential life threats) to property that way if they fall on a house or uproot a driveway or walkway. If planted, i... read more


On Dec 24, 2004, TREEHUGR from Now in Orlando, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

This is nearly evergreen, at least in the southern part of it's range. The leaves are narrow and the acorns are small. It's one of the most common oaks planted in Florida, but it's not one of my favorites and I would say keep shopping.

It has a rounded mature shape with upright growth. Lots of small branches, yet not the best choice for shade.


On Oct 17, 2004, Floridian from Lutz, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

Quercus laurifolia aka Laurel Oak, reaches heights to 100 feet. The wood is heavy, hard and coarse grained. It is a shorter lived tree than a live oak, rotting causes hollows in large trees that are used as shelter by wildlife.