G6800 Selecting Landscape Plants: Shade Trees | Page 17 | University of Missouri Extension

Revised June 2008

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Selecting Landscape Plants: Shade Trees

Red maple (Acer rubrum)

Large trees

Red maple

  • Maximum height
    90 feet
  • Relative growth rate
  • Freedom from insect pests
  • Freedom from disease problems
  • Resistance to storm damage
  • Will grow on poorly drained soil
  • Will grow in hot, dry areas
  • Easy to transplant
  • Withstands city conditions

The flowers of the red maple are one of the first signs of spring. The profusion of tiny red flowers with the background of smooth gray bark is a beautiful sight. Red maple is also one of the first trees to change color in the fall. Some trees develop a good red fall color, but many of them do not. Several improved varieties of red maple produce outstanding fall color. There are also varieties available with a narrow crown.

Red maple is easy to transplant and grows rapidly. However it is relatively weak wooded and subject to storm damage.

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