I want an acorn tree I do not have to wait till I'm dead to see it produce acorns. I have been disgusted talking with nurseries all day long. I am 56 and I want to have an acorn tree. Below are some I want. Tell me how long these trees take to produce. I am not liking what I am hearing.

One nursery said 20+ years and they have a 7 gallon size.

Another nursery told me 18-20+ years if I buy a large one 5+ feet.

Here is what the "real" people say:

Most species of oaks begin producing acorns at about 20 years old. Peak production occurs from about 50 to 80 years, and then acorn production tapers off after 80 years. Certain trees typically produce more acorns than others – a phenomenon that deer hunters are keen on following. How Do Acorns Develop? - University of Tennessee Extension

  • Nowhere is the answer - after 15 years,, the girth of the trunk will likely be 6-8 inches, the height probably over 12-15 feet, and the associated tap root will be very deep. The only possibility is ripping one out of the ground with machinery, having prepared it the year before - chances of successful transplant next to zero.
    – Bamboo
    Mar 23, 2017 at 11:50
  • Welcome to the site! I'm sorry but we don't allow questions asking for where to buy things or how much they cost. This is because we keep the questions here for a long time, and that type of information gets obsolete. It's also too specific to your area. This explains what I mean. I removed the last part so it can be a question about what trees you might choose. Hopefully that will keep it on-topic. It's definitely an interesting question! Mar 23, 2017 at 18:41
  • Why do you want it to produce acorns? Is it for human consumption? Animal consumption? Mar 25, 2017 at 21:02

3 Answers 3


The question is one of budget. As @stormy mentioned there are some companies that "rehome" trees, success rate should be should be reasonable for an established company. If they are an in Europe there are a number of nurseries that grow larger stock, with 550cm high, 30-35cm girth trees a standard nursery size. Indeed, I specify hundreds every year for projects and expect a high success rate. Failures which do occur are inevitably down to poor planting and care during establishment. My sites are usually large scale developments which means the soil is absolutely destroyed and doesn't drain by the time contractors get round to planting anything - we have do have problems with trees drowning.

Larger trees are also possible. A quick check shows one nursery offering Quercus ilex which are probably one of the better choices for eating (if that's what you are after) available at up to 50-60cm girth for around 6,500 GBP. At the extreme end, one of my old uni tutors worked on a scheme for Disneyland Paris which involved shipping mature Sequoiadendron giganteum from the US to Europe, they were 25m tall and had to go over in a modified container ship - cost millions.

What's the ratio of your pockets to your patience?


There are places that sell 'BIG TREES'. They have a symbiotic relationship with clients who want shrubs and trees taken out. The client gets a pretty good deal and the company RESELLS these trees/shrubs when they have been acclimated to a pot and living in a pot. They also bring it to your home and plant it and give a warranty. NOT CHEAP. But instant Oak tree.

A Pin Oak for example from a nursery however, that is 2" caliper and 8-10' high will look like a stick for awhile but in 5 years will be 10" caliper (diameter) and 15 feet and dense. Do NOT stake your tree. That will slow the growth. If you have high winds and a mature tree with a thick head we can discuss proper staking. Best time to shop for trees is in the fall. Best prices and no leaves and no worry about being blown over.

Call 'Big Trees' in Snohomish Washington. They were my shop for mature trees. They could give you hopefully, names of other companies that collect mature specimens. Not an easy task on their part. They go out to homes who want mature plants removed and prepare them for removal the next year by digging a trench forming the new root ball and allowing the tree to grow feeder roots within that rootball before removing the tree with this huge machine that plucks them out of the soil with little harm. They then plant them in huge pots, prune them and sell them the year after that when they know there is a great chance of survival. Ummmmm, I've seen stunning trees, Japanese Maples, 15'x15' that sold for $10,000. Don't think an oak would go for that much but instant mature tree.

If you've got 5 years (which you do young man) go to a nursery and get at least 2 or 2 1/2 inch caliper balled and burlapped. Have them give you a warranty if they plant it for you and explain the maintenance...pay them for monthly visits. They will do that to give you a warranty. Use Mycorrhizae fungus when planting. Do not stake until you show us a picture of tree and time of year and where you live.


I searched for hybrid oaks, and I found this. I figured hybrids were more likely to have unusual traits, like early fruit; so, that's why I did the search.

Anyway, the link talks about how some hybrid oaks may express hybrid vigor, which means faster growth, which may mean faster acorns. Not all hybrid oaks express this vigor. Apparently, according to the link, it's possible to get acorns after only a few years. It says six years is typical for a hybrid in Michigan. There are some at the nurseries that say they mature in five.

You might check out the Instant Oaks first (some of them that they sell already had acorns last year), although it looks like those are out of stock. The other hybrids are generally 4-8 years from seedling to fruit.

Here's a link to the nursery that sells these hybrid oaks in Michigan. Request the desktop version of the site if you're on a mobile device.

Here's a Canadian nursery with a similar claim.

Here's another Canadian nursery with hybrid oaks.

If you're wanting to grow the acorns for deer, check out this forum thread. They offer some faster alternatives to oaks, and express doubt that the hybrid oaks will produce in the stated time unless they have ideal nursery conditions.

Another idea that might be easier than transplanting a mature tree is getting land with a mature oak tree already on it. That might sound a little drastic, though—

I'd investigate the hybrids. They sound like they're exactly what you want. I would personally recommend getting several kinds instead of just one (that way, you might find the perfect one for your soil and climate).

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