The fresh foliage of the chestnut-leaved oak is emerging alongside the pendent catkins at the eastern end of Bateson Walk.
The genus Quercus contains approximately 600 species of deciduous, semi-evergreen or evergreen trees and shrubs found throughout the northern hemisphere in woodland and scrub. Plants are monoecious (with male and female flowers borne on the same tree), with the males held in long pendent catkins and the females individually, in pairs or in racemes, and these are followed by fruits held in small cups, or acorns. The leaves are alternate and can be toothed, lobed or entire. Quercus castaneifolia has long, narrow, elliptic leaves, similar to those of the sweet chestnut, hence the epithet castaneifolia, and these emerge at the same time as the slender male catkins. In late summer it produces distinct, squat acorns whose fruits sit inside a cup with reflexed scales. This is an attractive species reaching 30m in height and originating from Azerbaijan and Iran.