Oak-Hickory Forest Association
[A typical Oak-Hickory Forest.] About 60% of Maryland's forests are oak-hickory forest associations, and they are found across the State. The proportions of each species vary greatly. Species makeup depends on amounts of precipitation, and how water drains through soils.

Characteristic tree species include:
northern red oak, black oak, scarlet oak, white oak, chestnut oak, and all hickories.
Associated tree species include:
yellow-poplar, red maple, blackgum, persimmon, black walnut, butternut, pitch pine, sweetgum, black locust, dogwood, and sassafras.

Understory plants include:
dogwood, sassafras, sourwood, serviceberry, eastern redbud, American hornbeam, eastern hophornbeam, witch-hazel, hazelnut, blueberry, viburnum, spicebush, mountain-laurel, rhododendron, wild grape, Virginia creeper, green brier, and poison-ivy.

Herbaceous plants include:
tick trefoil, Solomon's seal, may apple, dittany, trillium, black snakeroot, pussy's-toes, wild ginger, bellwort, aster, cinquefoil, and goldenrod.

The oak-hickory forest association can be maintained if large oak and hickory seedlings are present prior to any natural or planned disturbance to the overstory. If only small openings or no openings are created in the canopy, this association will gradually convert to northern hardwoods. If larger openings are created or the overstory is completely removed within a short period of time, this association will gradually convert to Allegheny or Appalachian hardwoods.

Forest Health Report Contents


This information provided by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Forest Service

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