Maple ash-leaved or American
Family: Maple or Sapind. Rod: Maple. Type: American maple (Acer negundo) or Ash-leaved maple.
Found in the wild in North America. Refers to light-loving plants. Prefers nutritious, medium moisture soils. Requires moderate watering. Plant height reaches 20 meters and a little more. Life expectancy in the wild is up to 100 years. Reproduction method: seeds.
American Maple Tree and Leaves
American maple belongs to deciduous trees. The tree has a short, brown trunk branched at the base. The older the tree, the darker the bark of its trunk. Young maples have small cracks on the surface of the bark. As the tree "matures", they become deeper, gradually turning into grooves.
Long, spreading, smooth branches of green or olive color extend from the branching of the trunk. On the branches of the tree, you can often see a bluish, less often purple bloom. The crown is wide and spreading.
Leaves are compound, pinnate, petiolate. Each leaf consists of 3 or 5 long (up to 10 cm) leaves. The leaves have a serrated edge and a pointed, sometimes lobed, apex. The upper surface of the leaf is darker than the lower. The lower part of the leaf is slightly pubescent. In autumn, the leaves change color to shades of yellow and red.
The leaves of the American maple are similar in appearance to the leaves of an ash tree, hence one of the "names" of this plant - the Ash-shaped maple. Maple is a dioecious plant. On the same tree, but on different branches, there are both female and male flowers. Male flowers are collected in hanging bunches. Their anthers are colored reddish. Female inflorescences are green and are collected in a brush inflorescence. American maple begins to bloom in May. Flowering continues until the first leaves appear. In autumn, white fluffy buds form on the tree.
The fruit of a lionfish, containing one seed and two wings, is about 4 cm long. Lionfish ripen in late summer (August, September) and remain on the plant until spring. Mature trees are highly frost-resistant and easily tolerate low (down to -35 ° C) temperatures. Frost resistance of young trees is much lower.
The plant is characterized by rapid growth and vigorous development. Easily tolerates high air pollution, adapted to growing in urban environments. Life expectancy in outdoor conditions is approximately 30 years. Differs in high fragility. Propagated by seeds (self-seeding) and pneumatic shoots.
Distribution of the American ash-leaved maple
In the wild, American maple is found in tugai (forest along the uninterrupted river banks) in Canada and the United States. It can be seen in the Far East, in Central Asia, in deciduous forests on highly moistened, even swampy, soil.
In Russia, in a wild state, it is widespread in the Central region and Siberia. American maple successfully coexists with various types of poplars, willows, as well as oak and ash.
Due to its rapid growth and unpretentiousness, American maple is widely used for landscaping city streets, when creating parks and alleys.
However, this plant, as a gardener, has disadvantages:
- short life expectancy in urban conditions (up to 30 years).
- fragility caused by strong wind, rain and hail.
- the presence of a rapidly developing root growth that destroys the asphalt and requires correction.
- the formation of a large amount of pollen during flowering, which can cause allergic reactions in humans.
- a very large, wide crown shading the streets, which is a habitat for insects, including ticks.
- Roots and decaying leaves release toxins that can inhibit the growth of other plants growing near the maple.
- Abundant self-seeding leads to excessive growth of growth, which has to be dealt with like a weed.
Thus, the use of this plant as a landscaping plant is not always justified.
In decorative terms, American maple is of little value. It has a beautiful crown, picturesquely painted by nature in the autumn. Thanks to the different shades of the leaves (green, yellow and reddish), it looks very impressive.
In landscape design, the plant is practically not used. This is due to the structural features of its trunk. It is short, branched, and often curved. The branches are very fragile. American maple is not suitable for hedging and is most often used as a temporary breed used for quick landscaping in combination with other, more decorative, but slow-growing species.
The wood of the ash-shaped maple is short-lived and does not differ in strength, therefore it is suitable only for the manufacture of wooden containers and some household items.
The lower, widest part of the trunk (butt) and growths on the trunk (burls) of this plant on the cut have an unusual pattern, therefore they are widely used for making creative works. Vases, sculptures are cut out of them, handles for knives are cut out.
In the spring, the plant produces abundant sweet juice. In some countries, for example, in North America, maple began to be used as a sugar plant.
In the wild, the plant is popular with birds who like to nest in its dense crown, and in the fall they eat lionfish. They love to feast on the fruits of maple and squirrels.
The plant has a breeding value. On its basis, scientists create new decorative forms of trees and shrubs. The result of selection is the Flamingo maple, which is of great decorative value.
American maple does not require thorough maintenance. If you pay close attention to the plant and pamper it with your attention, it will thank you with a gorgeous crown and give you shade and coolness on a hot summer day.
Planting care consists in applying mineral fertilizers directly to the planting pits. After planting, it is desirable to carry out mulching of the trunk circles. Mulching is done with a five centimeter layer or peat.
In the spring, the plant is fed with a solution of potassium and sodium fertilizers. Summer feeding is carried out with the fertilizer "Kemira-wagon".
American maple easily tolerates drought, but thrives and grows better when watered. Watering rate: 15 liters under a tree. For young trees, the rate should be doubled. It is advisable to water the plant once a month, dry summer - once a week.
During the summer period, weeding and loosening of the soil is desirable in order to enrich it with oxygen. Summer care includes pruning dry and diseased branches. In some varieties, side branches are actively growing, it is also better to remove them.
In late autumn, the root collars of young (annual) plants should be covered with dense material or spruce branches. They are sensitive to frost. Mature plants are frost-hardy and do not need winter protection.
Plants are planted in spring or autumn. Planting with seedlings is carried out in specially prepared pits, at a shallow depth. The root collar of the seedling should be at ground level. If groundwater passes near the landing site, or planting is carried out in swampy soils, it is necessary to loosen the bottom of the pit well. Drainage containing sand and construction waste is introduced into the recess for planting, with a layer of up to 20 cm.
When planting, seedlings are placed at a distance of 3-4 meters from each other. To create a hedge - every one and a half, two meters.
Ash-leaved Maple Flamingo
It grows wild in North America. The tree was brought to Europe in the 17th century. It has been cultivated in Russia since 1796. Outwardly, this type of maple is a low deciduous tree or shrub with many trunks. Plant height 5-8 meters. The distinctive features of this species are the leaves and crown.
The Flamingo maple has complex, pinnate leaves, consisting of individual petiole leaves (from 3 to 5). The length of the leaf is 10 cm.The color of the leaves changes as they bloom:
- leaves are silvery-gray on young shoots.
- in summer, a white - pink border and spots of the same shade appear on them, unevenly distributed over the entire area of the leaf blade.
- closer to autumn, the color of the leaves becomes bright pink with dark pink and greenish stripes.
The crown of the tree has a rounded shape with a diameter of up to 4 meters and an openwork appearance. It is distinguished by an unusual color. The tree looks very beautiful and becomes a real decoration of streets, squares and gardens. The plant retains its decorative effect throughout its life.
Like other members of the Maple genus, the Flamingo maple is a dioecious plant. One plant contains both male and female inflorescences. They are quite small and have a greenish tint. The fruits are gray lionfish.
This type of maple grows well in lighted areas, loves fertile, well-moisturized soil. Resistant to low temperatures.
A tree with leaves like maple. Ash-leaved maple
In our country it is often called "Negundo maple", "California maple", "killer maple" or incorrectly called ash. Its roots, and when rotting and litter, emit arboricides (phytotoxicants that affect trees and shrubs). Settling, for example, in floodplain forests, it prevents the renewal of our poplars and willows. And to destroy the "killer" is almost impossible.
Ash-leaved maple, or American maple (Latin Acer negundo) is a species of the Maple genus, the Sapindaceae family. It is a deciduous tree native to central and eastern North America. It was introduced to other continents as well: South America, Australia, Africa and Eurasia.
The species was introduced to Russia in the 18th century; it spread by self-seeding throughout the country and began to pose a threat to native plant species.
What does ash-leaved maple look like?
This tree is up to 10-25 m high, with a trunk diameter of 30-50 cm, rarely up to 1 m. Its appearance (hibitus) depends on the habitat. If the maple grows separately or in light, not bored forests, then it is an erect tree with one well-developed trunk.
In his close landings trunk and crownbending, take a comfortable position in relation to the light and come out of the shadows of other trees. Then it becomes curved, with a drooping crown.
Often, the trunk begins to branch at a level of 0.5-5 m from the ground, which is associated with damage to its top by pests, frost or diseases. In this case, many shoots develop from dormant buds at the base of the trunk.
Over time, most of them die off, only 5-7 daughter trunks remain. Then the life form of the maple outwardly becomes like a bush.
Root system the plants are fibrous and superficial, but strong, keeping it well from windfall. Male trees give numerous root suckers, which is why the species often forms impenetrable thickets. On loose soils, maple forms a short taproot with strong lateral shoots.
The trunk is covered with a thin pale gray or light brown bark, with deep grooves. Young annual shoots are dark green, with a bluish, reddish-brown or purple waxy bloom that makes them glossy. The wood is soft yellowish green, the core is white and friable.
Kidney trees are ovoid, fluffy, white. Axillary kidneys are sessile, dull. Maple leaves are located oppositely on the branches. They are somewhat similar to ash leaves, hence its name - ash-leaved.
Leaves complex deeply dissected, less often trifoliate, imparipinnate, more often with 3, 5 or 7 serrated plates. From below they are silvery-white, from above they are light green, in autumn they are yellow. They are kept on petioles, 5-8 cm long.
Unlike most maples, this completely dioecious tree, blooms in March-April, long before the leaves open. Flowers often without petals. Male (staminate) flowers with reddish anthers are collected in bunches, hanging on pedicels up to 6 cm long.Female (pistillate) greenish flowers are grouped in an inflorescence brush, have thick short pedicels 6-8 mm long, which, when the fruit is formed, lengthen up to 2-3 cm.
Fruit - paired lionfish, 3.5-4.8 mm long, diverging at an acute or right angle, with narrow straight nuts. Green at first, light brown when ripe. They ripen and fall in September, some of them remain on the tree for the whole winter.
Differences between ash-leaved maple and Norway maple (lat.Acer platanoides)
Norway maple is also widespread in our country and is often cultivated in gardens and parks. The differences between these two types are clearly visible. Here are just a few of them.
- Norway maple lives up to 150 years, American maple - no more than 100 years.
- The height of the Norway maple reaches 28 m, the ash-leaved maple is never higher than 25 m.
- The leaves of the Norway maple are simple lobed, the leaves of the American maple are complex.
- The flowers of the Norway maple are yellowish-green, in the ash-leaved one they are either reddish or greenish.
- The buds of the Norway maple are reddish-green; in the ash-leaved maple they are pubescent and white.
- The bark of the Norway maple is coarser and rugged.
- The single trunk and branches of the Norway maple are always directed upwards, in the ash-leaved maple they are often curved, and there may be several daughter trunks.
Advantages and disadvantages of ash-leaved maple
American maple is a fast-growing breed, resistant to pollution, unpretentious to the composition of the soil. Still, it does better in fertile, well-drained soils.
Maple reaches maturity by 10-15 years. But it does not live long, only 60, less often 100 years.
Prefers bright sunlight. It settles in floodplain meadows, near lakes and rivers, on lands disturbed by man, for example, in wastelands near settlements, in lowlands and other places with sufficient water.
Benefits of American maple:
- drought and smoke resistance
- the ability to grow on various types of soil
- spreading rate by self-seeding and with the help of root suckers
- the ability to clean the air well due to the high rate of photosynthesis
- rapid degradability of plant litter
- high rate of recovery of biomass after fires.
Disadvantages of ash-leaved maple:
- low frost resistance. Young shoots can freeze in winter
- for growth, they need close-lying groundwater (no deeper than 2 m)
- high fragility of branches and susceptibility of the root to decay
- a large amount of pollen that causes allergies in humans
- when parts of the tree decay, they produce poisons that inhibit the growth of other plants
- root growth disturbs the structure of plantings, spoils the asphalt
- wood is susceptible to infestation by many types of pests.
At home in North America, maple was used as a sugar plant. In spring, its juice is very sweet.
Maple wood is fragile, soft, lightweight and fibrous. It is processed with great difficulty.
It contains a lot of water and requires a long time to dry. Therefore, it is almost never used as firewood. But its fibers are used for the manufacture of fiberboard and containers.
The tree is not suitable as a green hedge, as its active growth appears in unplanned places, but it is suitable for achieving a greening effect quickly and cheaply.
It is indispensable for planting forest and windbreak strips, as a fight against soil erosion, for strengthening the banks of reservoirs, etc.
Due to the early flowering, the species is suitable for planting next to apiaries. Honey collected by bees from its flowers is sold in Bialowieza and Poland.
Despite the irregular trunks, branches prone to breaking and many other shortcomings, the tree is actively used for landscaping cities.
Several interesting varieties have been bred that surpass the main form in decorativeness:
"Auratum" variety with lemon-colored leaves, curved trunk and twisting branches. Aureomarginatum leaf margins creamy yellow. Baron is a seedless and hardier variety. "Elegans" the leaves of this variety are convex, with edging, young - with bright yellow, mature - with white. Flamingo is a very popular form of maple with pink and white leaf patterns.
The developed ornamental maple varieties are distinguished by high frost resistance and other positive qualities. They are actively used as an object in landscape design.
Maple: photos of trees, seeds and leaves
Maple is a genus of woody plants that includes more than 150 species of shrubs and trees, widespread in Asia, Europe and the northern latitudes. Basically, maple breeds are unpretentious, frost-resistant and shade-tolerant. Therefore, when landscaping city parks and personal plots, maples are often used. Photos of maple and leaves of different types can be found on the Internet or in special literature.
In the wild, ash-leaved maple or acer negundo is widespread in the United States and Canada. In the northern parts of America, it reaches the state of Arizona and the Canadian province of Ontario. It is less common in California, Mexico and Guatemala. Usually it grows together with willows, aspen poplar, narrow-leaved poplar. American ash-leaved maple predominates over other plants in abandoned places, floodplains of rivers and small lakes.
Ash-leaved maple is very unpretentious to soil conditions, but grows best on fresh saturated soils. It grows especially aggressively in new territories, surprising its growth rate.
Nowadays, it has become widespread in many territories of Eurasia. And also in Russia it was widely used for landscaping parks and squares. Due to the fact that the maple is unpretentious and frost-resistant, its range has reached Verkhoyansk and Yakutsk. This widespread use is facilitated by and the fact that seeds can fly very long distances in strong winds.
The American maple tree is often used in landscaping streets, creating alleys and parks. Its advantages are fast growth and unpretentiousness to city conditions.
- excessive fragility of branches, which can be caused by gusty winds, heavy rain or hail
- numerous root growth, which is often knocked out of the asphalt, spoils and destroys it
- a large amount of pollen produced by the plant, which causes an allergic reaction in humans
- a dense crown hanging down to the ground, which is a place of accumulation of ticks.
The decorative value lies in the crown of the plant. Often on it you can see leaves of different shades: green, yellow and red. However, in gardening and landscape design, the American ash-leaved maple does not represent value, since its stem is always bent. It is also not suitable for creating hedges, since its shoots are very fragile. Often, the plant is used as a temporary breed, serving to quickly achieve a greening effect in combination with decorative, slow-growing species.
Ash-leaved maple wood is rarely used because it does not have sufficient strength and durability. Wooden containers, some pieces of furniture and household items are made from it. For various creative works, mouth guards and twisted butts are used, which have an unusual pattern on the cut. They are used to make wooden sculptures, decorative vases, knobs of edged weapons.
In North America it is used as a sugar plant. During the period of sap flow, it gives sweet juice.
In the wild, the wide crown of the tree is used for nesting birds. The seeds serve as food for some species of birds and proteins. Not suitable for livestock.
Very often this plant is used to breed new decorative forms. One of the most popular is the Flamingo variety.
As mentioned above, maple is a dioecious plant. It has both female and male flowers. Women are collected in brushes, have a green tint. Male inflorescences hang in bunches, reddish. The flowering period begins in May and lasts until the first leaves appear. Pollen can provoke the development of allergic reactions.
In the spring, the plant releases sweet juice, on the basis of which sugar is made in some countries. In autumn, white fluffy buds form on the tree. The fruit is a lionfish, it consists of one seed and two wings. It reaches 4 cm in length, ripens in August-September and remains on the plant until spring.
Ash-leaved maple inflorescences.
How to care for American maple
Maple is usually planted in spring or fall.
- First you need to prepare the pit. The plant is immersed to a not very great depth, the neck should not sink into the ground.
- When the area is swampy and the water is close, loosen the bottom in the hole and drain with rubble or sand twenty centimeters thick.
- Plants should be placed on the site in such a way that the distance between them is at least three meters. If you are making a hedge, you can cut this size in half.
It is not necessary to specially groom and cherish the American maple. But in any case, attention will not hurt. All plants love to be looked after.
As a result, the tree will look gorgeous, in the heat it will be fresh and cool under it in the dense shade of the spreading crown.
What is plant care?
- When you plant it, add the correct amount of fertilizer to the pit.
- After that, how the tree was planted, mulch the ground around it.
How is mulching done? Peat should be placed in the trunk circle. The layer thickness is about 5 cm.
In the spring, any tree especially needs feeding... It is better to use a fertilizer that contains sodium and potassium.
Although this plant is drought-resistant, nevertheless it is worth watering it periodicallypreferably every month.
- When it is hot, it is recommended to do this after a week. Under one tree, you need to pour about fifteen liters at a time.
- Actively growing specimens require twice as much water.
In the summer you need loosen the ground from time to timeto allow air to penetrate the roots.
Also you should regularly weed out under the tree.
Branches that are withered or diseased are best removed. The same must be done if the crown is too thick on the sides.
Before wintering, the root zone in young animals (one-year-olds) should cover to protect from freezing (you can use fabric, peat, etc.). Large trees do not need this procedure, they are no longer afraid of frost.
We advise you to study the Japanese red maple, which we wrote about earlier.