Silver Maple

Scientific Name: Acer saccharinum

 

The Silver Maple

Grows in zones 3 to 9, The tree is deciduous, it loses it's leaves every year in the fall then grows new leaves in the spring. The silver maple grows to a medium to large size at a rapid rate. Growth is slower after the tree becomes larger. The silver maple grows best in bright sun to partial shade and tolerates a wide range of soil types including poor soil. The silver maple is considered a medium texture tree. It has an upright form with oval to rounded shape and strong spreading branches.

The silver maple tree will attain a size of 50 to 70 ft and a width of 40 to 60'

The leaves are 3 to 6" opposite, simple leaf with 5 deeply cut lobes; silvery underside; green, yellow and brown combination fall color. The silver maple tree has very small greenish yellow to red flowers in early spring

The silver maple has very vigorous feeder roots. The tree can crack sidewalks and will clog drains and septic systems if planted near enough for the roots to reach. The tree is very easy to grow. Potential problems; brittle wood, large older branches can break off in high winds or ice storms. You should plant the silver maple away from driveways, roof over hangs and eaves.

Often people will inherit a large silver maple in the yard of an older home. Pay close attention to the condition of leaves and small branches on large limbs. If leaves and small branches are in decline or die in sections this could be a sign of Verticillium wilt. Have those large branches evaluated by a tree surgeon or arborist if the branch could cause damage when falling from the tree. Or to be safe just remove the branch at the sign of branch decline.

Beware that some tree surgeons and arborist's solution to everything is cut cut cut and then cut some more. Use caution when dealing with these people as when they are not cutting on your tree you are not paying them your money.

Silver Maple Problems:

The silver maple tree is susceptible to many insects and diseases including Verticillium wilt and other canker diseases. It is best to consult local nurserymen or ag extension departments as to silver maple problems common to your area.

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Cultivars available:

'Blair' - 50 to 70'; Strong branching pattern; Yellow fall color.

'Lutescens' - New leaves are orange-yellow; yellowish green in summer; yellow fall color.

'Northline' - 60 to 80' by 40 to 45'; Wide branching; Slow grower; good branch structure.

'Silver Queen' - 50' by 40'; Upright oval rounded; Almost fruitless; bright green summer leaves; yellow fall color.

'Skinner' - Pyramidal; slender lateral branches; Cut leaf; bright green summer leaves. ###

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