Quercus vacciniifolia Kellogg, Sci. Opin. 3: 52 1870. (Syn: Quercus chrysolepis var. vacciniifolia (Kellogg) Engelm.; Quercus chrysolepis subsp. vacciniifolia (Kellogg) A.E.Murray);
Quercus vacciniifolia (orth. var. Q. vaccinifolia), the huckleberry oak, is a member of the Protobalanus section of genus Quercus. It has evergreen foliage, short styles, very bitter acorns that mature in 18 months, and a woolly acorn shell interior.
Quercus vacciniifolia is native to the western United States, where it can be found in the Sierra Nevada of California, where its distribution extends just into Nevada, and the Klamath Mountains and southern Cascade Range as far north as southern Oregon. It grows in high mountain forests. It also dominates sections of mountain chaparral.
Many animal species use this shrub for food, including mule deer, which eat the leaves, and many birds and mammals, including the American black bear, which eat the acorns.
The Quercus vacciniifolia plant is used in restoration, revegetation, and garden landscaping. It is good for preventing erosion, such as on the slopes above Lake Tahoe to slow the erosion that pollutes the lake.
(From Wikipedia on 9.11.14)
Small Tree For ID : Oak Species : California : 25OCT14 : AK-31 : 4 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (4).
Small tree seen in a park in Fremont on 29/9/14.
With Acorns, another Oak Species.
Could be Quercus chrysolepis?
I think I can, rather than know I can. If it is not a hybrid and it is native to California then I think it is Q. vacciniifolia. The suggestion of Q. crysolepis is quite close in that they are both part of the Protobalanus section. Furthermore in some circles it is called Q. chrysolepis ssp vacciniifolia. I have never seen an acorn but both leaves and acorns look a very good match for the photos in the Illustrated Guide. I have one small slow growing example in my polytunnel.