Quercus lusitanica orientalis A.DC.
Quercus lusitanica genuina Boiss.
Quercus grosseserrata Kotschy ex Wenz.
Quercus infectoria puberula O.Schwarz
Quercus puberula O.Schwarz
Quercus lusitanica infectoria (G.Olivier) A.DC.
Quercus veneris A.Kern.
Quercus lusitanica veneris (A.Kern.) Holmboe
Quercus infectoria veneris (A.Kern.) H.Lindb.
Quercus boissieri Reut.
Quercus petiolaris Boiss. & Heldr.
Quercus syriaca Kotschy
Quercus tauricola Kotschy
Quercus pfaeffingeri Kotschy
Quercus goedelii Balansa & Kotschy ex A.DC.
Quercus lusitanica boissieri (Reut.) A.DC.
Quercus lusitanica leptocarpa A.DC.
Quercus lusitanica petiolaris (A.DC.) A.DC.
Quercus lusitanica syriaca (Kotschy) A.DC.
Quercus polycarpos Kotschy ex A.DC.
Quercus inermis Ehrenb. ex Kotschy
Quercus robur araxina Trautv.
Quercus leptocarpos Kotschy ex Boiss.
Quercus lusitanica latifolia Boiss.
Quercus tenuicola Boiss.
Quercus araxina (Trautv.) Grossh.
Quercus amblyoprion Woronow ex Maleev
Quercus woronowii Maleev
Quercus microphylla J.Thiébaut
Quercus thirkeana K.Koch
Quercus carpinea Kotschy ex A.DC.
Common Name: Aleppo Oak
Quercus infectoria is a deciduous to almost evergreen shrub or small tree; it can grow up to 15 metres tall[
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of materials, possibly also as a food. It is a beautiful tree with grayish-green foliage and is suitable for landscaping[
All parts of the plant contain tannins. Whilst tannins are found in many foods, and have a range of medicinal uses. They are usually only present in low concentrations. In some foods made from oaks (particularly the seeds), the tannin content can be quite high unless the food is treated to reduce tannin content.
Tannins are only of low toxicity and, because of their bitter taste and astringency, are unlikely to be eaten in large quantities. However, if they are taken in excess, they can cause stomach pains; constipation followed by bloody diarrhoea: excessive thirst; and excessive urination[
Southeast Europe - Greece; W. Asia - Turkey, Caucasus, Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Jordon
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Quercus infectoria is a moderately cold-hardy tree, tolerating temperatures down to around -20°c when dormant. It grows best in areas with hot summers. In areas with cooler summers, such as the maritime regions of the temperate zone, it often grows poorly, failing to properly ripen its wood and suffering frost damage over the winter[
]. A tree growing at Kew Gardens, London, England (hardiness zone 7 - 8) has exceeded 16 metres tall[
Prefers a good deep fertile loam which can be on the stiff side[
]. Young plants tolerate reasonable levels of side shade[
]. Tolerates moderate exposure, surviving well but being somewhat stunted[
Seedlings soon develop a taproot and become intolerant of root disturbance, they should be planted into their permanent positions whilst young[
Hybridizes freely with other members of the genus[
Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
Although we have no specific information for this species, the seeds of all the species of oak are edible - indeed, several species have been used as staple foods, whilst most if not all have been used for food in times of shortage, when better foods were not available[
The seed is usually cooked before eating, though it can also be eaten raw. It can be eaten whole, though it is more commonly dried, then ground into a powder and used as a thickening in stews etc or mixed with cereals for making bread.
In some species, especially many of those classified as 'white oaks', the seeds are low in tannins and have a more or less sweet and agreeable flavour. The seed of most species, however, have a very bitter flavour, due especially to the presence of tannins. In these species there are various processes that can remove or at least reduce the amount of these bitter substances (although other water-soluble substances, including some minerals, will also be removed).
Tannins are water-soluble and therefore the easiest way to remove or reduce tannin levels is by soaking in water. A few different methods are listed:-
A traditional method of preparing the seed was to bury it in boggy ground overwinter and allow the wet soil to gradually leach the tannins. The germinating seed was dug up in the spring when it would have lost most of its astringency and bitterness.
Another method was to wrap the seeds in a cloth bag and place them in a stream for several weeks.
Drying the seed and grinding it to a powder before soaking speeds up the process. The fastest method is to use hot water, by cooking the powder and changing the water several times until the cooking water is no longer bitter. Alternatively, you can use cold water (which is reported to produce the best quality flour). In this case, you soak the powdered seed in cold water for 12 - 24 hours then discard the water. Repeat this process for a number of times until the soak water is no longer bitter.
The roasted seed of many Quercus species has been used as a coffee substitute.
The bark and acorns are rich in tannins and are astringent[
]. They are used in the treatment of intertrigo, impetigo and eczema[
Quercus (oak) species are used in the traditional medicine of many cultures, being valued especially for their tannins. Various parts of the plant can be used, most frequently it is the leaves, bark, seeds, seed cups or the galls that are produced as a result of insect damage. A decoction or infusion is astringent, antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic, styptic and haemostatic. It is taken internally to treat conditions such as acute diarrhea, dysentery and haemorrhages. Externally, it is used as a mouthwash to treat toothache or gum problems and is applied topically as a wash on cuts, burns, various skin problems, haemorrhoids and oral, genital and anal mucosa inflammation[
]. Extracts of the plant can be added to ointments and used for the healing of cuts[
The tree is suitable for reforestation projects[
The leaves of most species in this genus are more or less rich in tannins. A mulch of the partially decayed leaves can be placed around vulnerable plants in order to repel slugs, snails, grubs etc, and these will in time break down to add humus and nutrients to the soil. Fresh leaves should be used with caution, however, since as these decay they utilize some of the nitrogen in the soil and thus can inhibit plant growth[
An ink is made from the tannin-rich galls[
]. The galls are caused by the activity of the Cynipid fly Cynips tinctoria[
]. The galls contain 36 - 58% tannin[
]. An extract of the galls is mixed with ferrous sulphate together with a gum and colouring in order to make the ink[
]. We are not sure if the galls are meant to be used before or after the insect has left them[
The bark is a rich source of tannins[
As a source of wood and lumber the genus Quercus is one of the most important of all groups of trees. We have no specific information for this species, but in general he timber is noted for its strength, durability, and beauty, and is used everywhere for innumerable purposes, ranging from fuel to railroad ties, construction of buildings and ships, interior trim, flooring, and all grades of furniture. The woods of different species vary as to their physical qualities; some of them are very hard and tough, others are lighter in weight, softer, and less tough[
The wood is used mainly for fuel and charcoal production[
Seed - it quickly loses viability if it is allowed to dry out. It can be stored moist and cool overwinter but is best sown as soon as it is ripe in an outdoor seed bed, though it must be protected from mice, squirrels etc. Small quantities of seed can be sown in deep pots in a cold frame. Plants produce a deep taproot and need to be planted out into their permanent positions as soon as possible, in fact seed sown in situ will produce the best trees[
]. Trees should not be left in a nursery bed for more than 2 growing seasons without being moved or they will transplant very badly.