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John C. Tappeiner, II, Philip M. McDonald, Douglass F. Roy
Tanoak (Lithocarpus densiflorus), also called tanbark-oak, is an evergreen hardwood that, with other species in the genus, is considered a link between the chestnut, Castanea, and the oak, Quercus (19). Tanoak has flowers like the chestnut and acorns like the oak. This medium-sized tree grows best on the humid moist slopes of the seaward coastal ranges. It usually occurs in a complex mixture with conifers and other hardwoods, but often forms pure even-aged stands. The wood is hard, strong, and fine-grained. Tanoak is designated a commercial species in California. Current major uses are for fuel and pulp. The acorns are a valuable food source for many kinds of wildlife.