Wednesday, November 17th, 2010...6:47 am

The Japanese Maple Tree

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This has been a spectacular fall for the Japanese maple species Acer japonicum and Acer plamatum. As TheGardenLady drives around her area, she is “blown away” with this year’s fall colors. This is the first time I remember seeing so many of the lace leaf or cut leaf form that have fall colors that are such a brilliant orange. Of course, the red Japanese Maple species are also gorgeous. And with the blue sky and the yellows, reds and oranges of the other trees-Nature’s painting this fall is brilliant.

TheGardenLady’s neighbor has had a Japanese maple in his yard all the years this garden lady has lived in her house. His is a relatively tall Japanese Maple, about 20 feet tall, with red leaves that turn an even more dazzling red in the fall. This GardenLady never had success planting the seedlings that she was given from that tree. So she gave up trying.

But Nature never gave up planting the Japanese Maples in my yard. Many seedlings have often blown into my yard, and as over the years I have enriched my soil with mulch and horse manure, a number of these maples have sprouted and are now growing in my yard. I now have 4 fairly large Japanese Maples. The interesting thing is that not all those seedlings seem to have come from my neighbor’s yard. One seems to be from a tree a block away and the fourth tree with its green leaves fringed in red has a parentage that is a mystery to me.

Though I have read that the same tree can produce seedlings that produce differences in the coloration of the trees, so only nature knows which trees are the parents.  See here.

Because Japanese horticulturalists have been selecting and cultivating both Acer Japonicum and Acer plamatum for over 300 years, gardeners have an amazing selection of these shrubs or small trees with a wide range of unique leaf form, color and shape to choose from for your landscaping needs. You can find some to plant in containers if you don’t have a large yard or if you want to have a tree on your deck or patio. You can pick some Acers that like sun to those that will live with almost full shade. You can pick some that are hardy to minus twenty degrees. They seem to tolerate a wide range of pH but like good drainage. You can even find some to create your own Bonsai trees.  See here.

There are so many nurseries that specialize in Japanese maples, that you can find the perfect maple for you. Online one site I enjoyed looking at because of the wonderful pictures as well as their information is this.   When looking at all the photos it seems too difficult to choose only one.

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