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Home  > Tree Identification  > Sugar Maple Tree

Sugar Maple
Hard Maple
Rock Maple

Acer saccharum

Sugar Maples prefer fertile, moist, well-drained soils, but can occasionally be found in poor, rocky soils. As a result of this the best specimens are usually found in rural, versus urban, settings. In general, Sugar Maples do not thrive in hot, dry conditions. Additionally, Sugar Maples are not tolerant to road salt or soil compaction. However, once established, the Sugar Maple is a long-lived and relatively pest free shade tree.

Pronounced fall color is one of the best attributes of the Sugar Maple. Fall color is variable, even on the same tree from year to year, ranging from golden yellow to brilliant orange, with hints of red.

Woodworkers use Sugar Maple lumber for furniture, flooring, and veneer. A random abnormality in the grain of Sugar Maple wood results in “curly maple” or “bird’s-eye” maple which is highly sought after by furniture makers.

Sugar Maples are often associated with maple sugar and maple syrup. Sugar Maple sap has the highest sugar content of all maples, but it still takes 30 - 40 gallons of Sugar Maple sap will make one gallon of maple syrup.

Common Sugar Maple cultivars:
* ‘Newton Sentry’
* ‘Temple’s Upright’
* ‘Green Mountain’
* ‘Bonfire’

Sugar Maple characteristics:

Common insect pests of Red Maple: Inchworms.

Common disease pests of Red Maple: Verticillium Wilt.

Fall foliage: Varies from golden yellow to orange-red.

Form: Pyramidal when young, becoming broadly rounded when mature.

Fruit: 1 inch long samaras.

Growth Rate: Slow to moderate.

Leaves: 3 to 5 inches in diameter and usually 5 lobed.

Mature height: 60 - 80’.

Preferred soil pH: 3.7 - 7.9

Summer foliage: Green.

Tree bark: Smooth and gray on young trees. Deeply furrowed with long, irregular plates on older specimens.

USDA hardiness zone: 3 - 8A



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