Sugar maple tree Wikipedia

Sugar maple tree Wikipedia

Species of flowering plant within the household Sapindaceae

Acer saccharum, the sugar maple, is a species of flowering plant within the soapberry and lychee household Sapindaceae. It’s native to the hardwood forests of japanese Canada, from Nova Scotia west by southern Quebec, central and southern Ontario to southeastern Manitoba round Lake of the Woods, and northcentral and northeastern United States, from Minnesota eastward to Maine and southward to northern Virginia, Tennessee and Missouri.[3] Sugar maple is finest identified for being the first supply of maple syrup and for its brightly coloured fall foliage.[4] It could even be often known as “rock maple”, “sugar tree”, “birds-eye maple”, “candy maple”, “curly maple”,[5][6] or “laborious maple”, significantly when referring to the wooden.[7]


Seasonal leaf colour change

Acer saccharum is a deciduous tree usually reaching heights of 25–35 m (80–115 ft),[8][9] and exceptionally as much as 45 m (150 ft).[10] A 10-year-old tree is usually about 5 m (20 ft) tall. As with most timber, forest-grown sugar maples type a a lot taller trunk and narrower cover than open-growth ones.

The leaves are deciduous, as much as 20 cm (7.9 in) lengthy and broad,[8] palmate, with 5 lobes and borne in reverse pairs. The basal lobes are comparatively small, whereas the higher lobes are bigger and deeply notched. In distinction with the angular notching of the silver maple, nevertheless, the notches are usually rounded at their inside. The autumn colour is usually spectacular, starting from shiny yellow on some timber by orange to fluorescent red-orange on others. Sugar maples additionally tend to paint erratically in fall. In some timber, all colours above might be seen on the identical time. Additionally they share a bent with purple maples for sure elements of a mature tree to alter colour weeks forward of or behind the rest of the tree. The leaf buds are pointy and brown-colored. The current 12 months’s progress twigs are inexperienced, and switch darkish brown.

The flowers are in panicles of 5 to 10 collectively, yellow-green and with out petals; flowering happens in early spring after 30–55 rising diploma days. The sugar maple will typically start flowering when it’s between 10 and 200 years outdated. The fruit is a pair of samaras (winged seeds). The seeds are globose, 7–10 mm (9321332 in) in diameter, the wing 2–3 cm (341 14 in) lengthy. The seeds fall from the tree in autumn, the place they should be uncovered to 45 days of temperatures beneath 4 °C (39 °F) to interrupt their coating down. Germination of A. saccharum is sluggish, not happening till the next spring when the soil has warmed and all frost hazard is previous.[11][need quotation to verify]
It’s intently associated to the black maple, which is typically included on this species, however generally separated as Acer nigrum. The western American bigtooth maple (Acer grandidentatum) can also be handled as a range or subspecies of sugar maple by some botanists.

The sugar maple might be confused with the Norway maple, which isn’t native to America however is often planted in cities and suburbs, and they don’t seem to be intently associated throughout the genus. The sugar maple is most simply recognized by clear sap within the leaf petiole (the Norway maple has white sap), brown, sharp-tipped buds (the Norway maple has blunt, inexperienced or reddish-purple buds), and shaggy bark on older timber (the Norway maple bark has small grooves). Additionally, the leaf lobes of the sugar maple have a extra triangular form, in distinction to the squarish lobes of the Norway maple.[12][13]

Though many individuals assume a purple sugar maple leaf is featured on the flag of Canada, the official maple leaf doesn’t belong to any specific maple species; though it maybe most intently resembles a sugar maple leaf of all of the maple species in Canada, the leaf on the flag was specifically designed to be as identifiable as attainable on a flag waving within the wind with out regard as to whether it resembled a selected species’ foliage.[14]


The sugar maple is an especially vital species to the ecology of many forests within the northern United States and Canada. Pure stands are frequent, and it’s a main part of the northern and Midwestern U.S. hardwood forests. As a result of its want for chilly winters, sugar maple is generally discovered north of the 42nd parallel in USDA rising zones 3–5. It’s much less frequent within the southern a part of its vary (USDA Zone 6) the place summers are scorching and humid; there sugar maple is confined to ravines and moist flatlands. Within the east, from Maryland southward, it’s restricted to the Appalachians. Within the west, Tennessee represents the southern restrict of its vary and Missouri its southwestern restrict. Assortment of sap for sugar can also be not attainable within the southern a part of sugar maple’s vary as winter temperatures don’t develop into chilly sufficient.

The minimal seed-bearing age of sugar maple is about 30 years. The tree is long-lived, sometimes 200 years and infrequently as a lot as 300.

Sugar maple is native to areas with cooler climates and requires a tough freeze every winter for correct dormancy. In northern elements of its vary, January temperatures common about −18 °C (0 °F) and July temperatures about 16 °C (61 °F); in southern elements, January temperatures common about 10 °C (50 °F) and July temperatures common nearly 27 °C (81 °F).[15] Seed germination additionally requires extraordinarily low temperatures, the optimum being simply barely above freezing, and no different identified tree species has this property. Germination of sugar maple seed in temperatures above 50 °F (10 °C) is uncommon to nonexistent.

Acer saccharum is among the many most shade tolerant of huge deciduous timber. Its shade tolerance is exceeded solely by the striped maple, a smaller tree. Like different maples, its shade tolerance is manifested in its skill to germinate and persist beneath a closed cover as an understory plant, and reply with speedy progress to the elevated gentle fashioned by a spot within the cover. Sugar maple can tolerate nearly any soil kind in need of pure sand, however doesn’t tolerate xeric or swampy situations.

Sugar maples are deeper-rooted than most maples and interact in hydraulic raise, drawing water from decrease soil layers and exuding that water into higher, drier soil layers. This not solely advantages the tree itself, but in addition many different crops rising round it.[16]

Human influences have contributed to the decline of the sugar maple in lots of areas. Its function as a species of mature forests has led it to get replaced by extra opportunistic species in areas the place forests are lower over. Local weather change has contributed to the decline of the sugar maple by pushing the appropriate habitat vary for the timber additional north, the place temperatures are cooler. This has resulted in a gradual northward migration of the species.[17] The sugar maple additionally reveals a better susceptibility to air pollution than different species of maple. Acid rain and soil acidification are among the main contributing elements to maple decline. Additionally, the elevated use of salt during the last a number of a long time on streets and roads for deicing functions has decimated the sugar maple’s function as a avenue tree.[18][19] The mushroom Pholiota squarrosoides is thought to decay the logs of the tree.[20]

In some elements of New England, significantly close to urbanized areas, the sugar maple is being displaced by the Norway maple. The Norway maple can also be extremely shade tolerant, however is significantly extra tolerant of city situations, ensuing within the sugar maple’s substitute in these areas. As well as, Norway maple produces a lot bigger crops of seeds, permitting it to out-compete native species.

Cultivation and makes use of[]

Maple syrup[]

Accumulating sap from sugar maples

The sugar maple is among the most vital Canadian timber, being, with the black maple, the key supply of sap for making maple syrup.[21] Different maple species can be utilized as a sap supply for maple syrup, however some have decrease sugar contents and/or produce extra cloudy syrup than these two.[21] In maple syrup manufacturing from Acer saccharum, the sap is extracted from the timber utilizing a faucet positioned right into a gap drilled by the phloem, simply contained in the bark. The collected sap is then boiled. Because the sap boils, the water is evaporated off and the syrup left behind. Forty gallons of maple sap are required to be boiled to provide only one gallon of pure syrup. Syrup manufacturing relies on the tree rising in cooler climates; as such, sugar maples within the southern a part of its vary produce little sap.[22]


Extremely-thin sugar maple sections from Romeyn Beck Hough’s American Woods. From prime to backside, the picture shows transverse, radial and tangential sections. The adjoining picture exhibits gentle passing by the specimens.

The sapwood might be white, and smaller logs might have the next proportion of this fascinating wooden.[23] Bowling alleys and bowling pins are each generally manufactured from sugar maple. Timber with wavy woodgrain, which might happen in curly, quilted, and “birdseye maple” types, are particularly valued. Maple can also be the wooden used for basketball courts, together with the flooring utilized by the NBA, and it’s a standard wooden for baseball bats, together with white ash. In recent times, as a result of white ash has develop into threatened by emerald ash borer, sugar maple wooden has more and more displaced it for baseball bat manufacturing. It is usually extensively used within the manufacture of musical devices, such because the members of the violin household (sides and again), guitars (neck), grand pianos (rim), and drum shells. It is usually usually used within the manufacture of sporting items.[24][25]

Canadian maple, sometimes called “Canadian hardrock maple”, is prized for pool cues, particularly the shafts. Some production-line cues will use lower-quality maple wooden with beauty points, comparable to “sugar marks”, that are most frequently gentle brown discolorations attributable to sap within the wooden. The perfect shaft wooden has a really constant grain, with no marks or discoloration. Sugar marks normally don’t have an effect on how the cue performs, however are usually not as prime quality as these with out it. The wooden can also be utilized in gunstocks and flooring for its energy.[citation needed][24] Canadian hardrock maple can also be used within the manufacture of electrical guitar necks resulting from its excessive torsional stability and the brilliant, crisp resonant tone it produces. If the grain is curly, with flame or quilt patterns, it is normally reserved for dearer devices. In high-end guitars this wooden is typically Torrefied to cook dinner out the Lignin resins, permitting the better stability to local weather & environmental adjustments, and to reinforce its tonal traits because the instrument’s resonance is extra evenly distributed throughout the cellulose construction of the wooden with out the lignin.

City planting[]

Sugar maple in a suburban panorama

Closeup of autumn foliage

Sugar maple was a favourite avenue and park tree in the course of the 19th century as a result of it was simple to propagate and transplant, is pretty fast-growing, and has stunning fall colour. As famous above, nevertheless, it proved too delicate to proceed in that function after the rise of automobile-induced air pollution and was changed by Norway maple and different hardier species. The shade and the shallow, fibrous roots might intervene with grass rising beneath the timber. Deep, well-drained loam is the most effective rooting medium, though sugar maples can develop effectively on sandy soil which has buildup of humus. Gentle (or unfastened) clay soils are additionally well-known to assist sugar maple progress. Poorly drained areas are unsuitable, and the species is very short-lived on flood-prone clay flats. Its salt tolerance is low and it is extremely delicate to boron.[citation needed] The species can also be topic to defoliation when there are dense populations of larvae of Lepidoptera species just like the rosy maple moth (Dryocampa rubicunda).[26]


  • ‘Apollo’ – columnar
  • ‘Arrowhead’ – pyramidal crown
  • ‘Astis’ (‘Steeple’) – heat-tolerant, good in southeastern USA, oval crown
  • ‘Bonfire’ – quick rising
  • ‘Caddo’ – naturally occurring southern ecotype or subspecies, from Southwestern Oklahoma, nice drought and warmth tolerance, sensible choice for the Nice Plains area[27]
  • ‘Columnare’ (‘Newton Sentry’) – very slim
  • ‘Fall Fiesta’ – tough-leaved, colourful in season, above-average hardiness
  • ‘Goldspire’ – columnar with yellow-orange fall colour
  • ‘Inexperienced Mountain’ (PNI 0285) – sturdy foliage resists warmth and drought, oval crown, above-average hardiness
  • ‘Inferno’ – probably the hardiest cultivar, with extra purple fall colour than ‘Lord Selkirk’ or ‘Unity’
  • ‘Legacy’ – robust, vigorous and standard
  • ‘Lord Selkirk’ – very hardy, extra upright than different northern cultivars
  • ‘Monumentale’ – columnar
  • ‘September Flare’ – very hardy, early orange-red fall colour
  • ‘Candy Shadow’ – lacy foliage
  • ‘Temple’s Upright’ – nearly as slim as ‘Columnare’
  • ‘Unity’ – very hardy, from Manitoba, sluggish regular progress

Use by Native Individuals[]

The Mohegan use the interior bark as a cough treatment, and the sap as a sweetening agent and to make maple syrup.[28]

Huge timber[]

The nationwide champion for Acer saccharum is situated in Charlemont, Massachusetts. In 2007, the 12 months it was submitted, it had a circumference of 5.92 m (233 inches, 19.4 ft) at 1.Three meters above the bottom’s floor, and thus a diameter at breast top of about 1.88 m (6.18 ft). At the moment the tree was (34.1 m (112 ft) tall with a median crown unfold of 27.7 m (91 ft). Utilizing the scoring system of circumference in inches plus top in toes plus 25% of crown unfold in toes resulted in a complete variety of 368 factors on the Nationwide Register of Huge Timber.[29] A tree in Lyme, Connecticut, measured in 2012, had a circumference of 18.25 toes (5.56 m), or a median diameter at breast top of about 5.eight toes (1.77 m). This tree had been 123 ft (37.5 m) tall with a crown unfold of 86 ft (26.2 m), counting for a complete variety of 364 factors.[30]

In standard tradition[]

Leafless sugar maples in Vermont state quarter

The sugar maple is the state tree of the US states of New York, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

It’s depicted on the state quarter of Vermont, issued in 2001.


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  17. ^ Lafleur, Benoit; Paré, David; Munson, Alison D.; Bergeron, Yves (2010). “Response of northeastern North American forests to local weather change: Will soil situations constrain tree species migration?”. Environmental Critiques. 18: 279–289. doi:10.1139/a10-013.
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  26. ^ “Auburn College Entomology and Plant Pathology | Greenstriped Mapleworm”. Auburn College Entomology and Plant Pathology. Retrieved 14 November 2017.
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