Acer rubrum - Red Maple

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Butterfly FriendlyPart ShadeBird FriendlyFall Color
DESCRIPTION
Red Maple
Acer rubrum

Fast-growing with a pleasing oval shape, this outstanding specimen shade tree features deep green, trident foliage with gray green leaf backs.  Tiny red flowers emerge in early spring to the delight of early native pollinators. Foliage puts on a fiery red show you can't help but admire!

BENEFITS
  • Outstanding provider of cover and nesting
  • Oval to pyramidal shape is a landscape winner!
  • Brilliant red fall foliage color is a showstopper
  • Easy to grow and tolerates many soil conditions even wet
  • Early spring bloom attracts all kinds of pollinators
  • Native birds love to eat its seed
  • Insect-eating birds visit the tree to feed on the pollinators
  • Provides cover and nest sites for all kinds of birds
NATIVE INFO

Native Range

Woods and swamps of Eastern North America; Newfoundland to Manitoba south to Eastern Texas and Florida.

 

Map Credit: The Biota of North America 
Map Key: Green (native), Teal (native, adventive), Blue (present), Yellow (present & rare), Red (extinct)

INTERESTING FACTS

Swamp red maple is one of the earliest blooming trees in the northeast. The flowers provide nectar for small bees, flies, and beetles, which in turn attract insect-eating birds such as kinglets, phoebes, pine warblers, and others.

 

GROWING TIPS

 

Plant in full sun to part shade. Prefers moist, acidic soils with good drainage but grows well in average to wet, well-drained soil. This is a big tree so give it plenty of room to reach full size.

 

Mature Size: 40-70ft. Tall x 30-50ft. Wide

Hardiness Zone: 3-8

Sun Exposure: Full sun to Part shade

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    American Beauties Offer Solution Based Plant Collections to Help you Choose

    Quick Tips for Choosing Plants:

    • Planting a variety of native trees, shrubs, perennials and vines increases biodiversity and gives wildlife a source for food, cover and nesting
    • Choose a mixture of deciduous and evergreen trees so birds and other wildlife will always be able to find shelter
    • Plant trees and large shrubs where they will block winter winds from the house and shade it in summer, that will save energy and lower your carbon footprint
    • Try your best to buy plants that were grown locally, your independent garden center will be your best bet
    • Think about ultimate height and width of the plant you choose, make sure it will fit the space you have for it when it's reached maturity
    • Plant nectar plants in groups, to attract butterflies and other beneficial insects more easily
    • Ask for help if you need it. Most garden centers either have a landscape designer on staff or they can give you a reference of a designer that is adept at native plant wildlife gardening. There will be upfront costs but they are small when compared to having to redo a landscape that wasn't what you really wanted

    Our Plant Tags Hold the Secrets to Success

    Choosing the right plants for your garden can seem like a daunting task but we’re here to help. Our horticulturists have spent a considerable amount of time researching and writing our beautiful, American Beauties plant tags to help you be successful. First of all, when you see an American Beauties branded pot at your garden center you can be confident that the plant is native to your area and a responsible choice. 

    When you look at our tag you’ll find information about the plants natural habitat. That will give you a clue to how it will work in your backyard. For instance if the plant is naturally founded and moist, shade and you have full sun, it’s not the plant for you. The “Features” section gives you an overview or plant description so you’ll know what to expect. While the “Benefits” section talks about the plants strong suits and how the plant will benefit wildlife. 

    A Special Note About Exposure

    Full sun: Prefers six or more hours of direct sunshine a day
    Partial shade: Thrives in three to six hours of daily sunshine
    Shade: Generally does well with less than three hours of sun per day. Having said that even shade loving plants will struggle in extremely deep shade.

    DOWNLOADABLE RESOURCES

    Best Plants for Bees - Double sided printout for download

    Best Plants for Butterflies - Double sided printout for download

    Best Plants for Birds - Double sided printout for download


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