Silver Maple Figure 1.jpg

Silver Maple | University of Redlands

Widespread Identify: Silver Maple; Swamp Maple; Water Maple; Silverleaf Maple; White Maple; Tender Maple

Scientific Identify: Acer saccharinum

Household: Sapindaceae (Soapberry Household)


Behavior: The Silver Maple Tree is without doubt one of the commonest timber in North America. The tallest timber vary from 50-70 ft (15.24-21.34 meters) tall at their mature top and 30-50 ft (9.14-15.24 meters) extensive (Morton 2019). The Silver Maple is understood for its fast-growing, but weak-wooded trunk. It has a brief stout trunk and a really extensive crown, which is irregularly formed. Its branches are slender and droop, however flip upwards on the ideas (Britannica 2019).

Silver Maple Figure 1.jpgDetermine 1. Silver Maple Tree.1 

Leaves: The leaves are 8-15cm lengthy (Nesom 2000). They’re deeply reduce and have 5 lobes. They’re mild inexperienced on prime, but silvery beneath (Britannica 2019). They’re additionally star-shaped and have a tendency to fall off at maturity (Gilman 1993).

Silver Maple Figure 2.jpgDetermine 2. Silver Maple Tree Leaves.2 

Twigs & Bark: The bark comprises no thorns and the twigs have a barely disagreeable odor whenever you crush them (Nesom 2000). The bark is grey and skinny and could be very simple to interrupt off. The younger bark is clean, however because the tree ages, it turns into flakier (Britannica 2019). Subsequently, bark requires upkeep underneath the tree to take away the flakes from underneath the tree. The roots are shallow within the floor and can raise sidewalks and intrude with mowing (Gilman 1993).

Silver Maple Figure 3.jpgDetermine 3. Silver Maple Tree Twigs.3  

Silver Maple Figure 4.jpgDetermine 4. Silver Maple Tree Bark.4 

Flowers & Fruits: The paired, winged fruits are the most important of all of the maple timber (Britannica 2019). Inexperienced flowers seem alongside the shoots earlier than the leaves unfurl in springtime. The fruit is unappealing to wildlife and can be a bit garish (Gilman 1993). The tree has pink flowers through the springtime. Particular person timber generally have all-male (fascicled) or all-female (drooping racemes) flowers. All flowers on one tree happen on the similar time. They’re a inexperienced or yellowish colour coming from pink buds about 6mm in size (Nesom 2000).

Silver Maple Figure 5.jpgDetermine 5. Silver Maple Tree Fruit.5 

Silver Maple Figure 6.jpgDetermine 6. Silver Maple Tree Fruit.6 

The place it’s from:

Native Vary: Silver Maples are primarily present in jap North America. They can be discovered instantly adjoining to Canada, besides alongside main parts of the Gulf and Atlantic coastal plains (Nesom, 2000). Its abundance in its pure habitat has decreased as a consequence of deforestation however has elevated in city areas due to individuals planting them for shade. It’s primarily present in wetter soil. It may be discovered on stream banks, flood plains, and stream edges. They are often present in altitudes starting from 100-2000 ft (30.48-609.6 meters) (Nesom, 2000). Its shade tolerance is average to poor. They’ll stand up to many various environmental stressors as properly corresponding to flooding. They have an inclination to develop very quick, however don’t compete properly with different species. It may tolerate its trunk being underneath just a few ft of rain for just a few weeks as properly.

Silver Maple Figure 7.jpgDetermine 7. Native Vary Map of Silver Maple Tree.7 

Ecological Notes: The numerous seeds that the Silver Maple Tree produces are a meals supply to numerous completely different birds, corresponding to grosbeaks, finches, wild turkey, geese, and mammals like squirrels and chipmunks (Nesom, 2000). The buds are necessary for squirrels particularly when winter comes round and so they have very scarce sources for meals. The tree’s bark can be meals for beavers and the foliage is usually consumed by rabbits. Not solely is the tree used for meals, but it surely can be used as safety for smaller animals as a result of its droopiness creates shelters (Nesom, 2000). The tree is pollinated by wind dispersion. Some pests of the Silver Maple tree are the leaf stalk borer and petiole-borer. Each of those bugs go into the leaf stalk and shrivel it, turning it black and making the leaf fall off (Gilman, 1993). Scale bugs are additionally an issue for maples and the most typical is the Cottony Maple Scale. This insect creates a cottony mass on the bottoms of branches. A Crimson Erineum Mite can be present in maples and creates patches underneath leaves which can be pink and fuzzy (Gilman, 1993). A illness that the Silver Maple can get is anthracnose. This illness causes mild brown areas on leaves that appear to be they’re scorched. One other illness is verticillium wilt. This causes branches to wilt and die. Whether it is too extreme, the tree can’t be saved (Gilman, 1993).

What we use it for:

The Silver Maple tree was once planted in lots of city areas as ornament, however that has since slowed down since individuals have been sad with how a lot particles fell off the tree as a consequence of its brittle bark. The Silver Maple tree can develop very quick and was once planted for “on the spot shade.” Its roots additionally develop very shallow to the bottom, so it might destroy backyards, so that’s another excuse as to why individuals have slowed down planting them of their yards. The tree can be planted as vegetative rehabilitation for surface-mined lands (Nesom, 2000). Its sap can be used to make syrup, however it’s the worst maple tree to make use of for syrup as its sap could be very mild and has very low quantities of sugar in it. Though it isn’t the perfect syrup, it may be used as an excellent cough syrup. The wooden is brittle, however is tough as properly and can be utilized to make furnishings, cabinetry, flooring, paneling, musical devices, wagons, packing containers, and rails (Nesom, 2000). It can be chopped down for lumber and outdated heartwood has a swirl sample of a “chicken’s eye maple.” Many individuals do nonetheless use this tree for landscaping initiatives despite the fact that it creates a lot particles.


  1. Nesom, G. (2000, November 13). Silver Maple Acer saccharinum L. Retrieved February 18, 2019, from
  2. Silver maple. (2019). Retrieved from
  3. Silver maple. (2019). Britannica On-line Tutorial Version. Retrieved from
  4. Gilman, E. F., & Watson, D. G. (1993, November). Acer saccharinum Silver Maple. Retrieved February 2019, from

Photograph References:

  1. Silver Maple Tree. Retrieved from:
  2. Silver Maple Tree Leaves. Retrieved from:
  3. Silver Maple Tree Twigs.  Retrieved from:
  4. Silver Maple Tree Bark. Retrieved from:
  5. Silver Maple Tree Fruit. Retrieved from:
  6. Silver Maple Tree Fruit. Retrieved from:
  7. Native Vary Map of Silver Maple Tree. Retrieved from:

Biographers: Jake Stewart & Joseph Reyes ‘21, BIOL 238: Evolution, Ecology, & Conduct, Spring 2019

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