Common in the understory of the forests of eastern North America, mountain maple is also an attractive subject for lightly shaded gardens. Typically forming a large multi-trunked shrub, it bears dark green leaves with toothed margins and three pointed lobes. The leaves turn bright orange, red, or yellow in fall. Unique, upright, conical clusters of small yellow flowers appear at the branch tips in late spring, later than those of most other maples. Drooping two-winged fruits follow the flowers, maturing from green to showy rose-pink. The bark is dark pewter-gray.
This lovely but short-lived maple likes moist, well-drained, humus-rich, acidic soil and partial shade. It fares poorly in areas with hot summers. Plant it in a woodland edge or as an understory tree, preferably where its colorful fall leaves and fruits will receive the attention they deserve. (info source: Learn2Grow.com)
Genus - Acer
Species - Spicatum
Common name - Mountain Maple
Pre-Treatment - Required
Hardiness zones - 2 - 7
Height - 30' / 9 m
Spread - 20' / 6 m
Plant type - Large Shrub/Small Tree
Vegetation type - Deciduous
Exposure - Partial Sun, Partial Shade
Growth rate - Medium
Soil PH - Acidic, Neutral
Soil type - Loam, sand, well drained
Water requirements - Average water needs. Water regularly, do not over water
Landscape uses - Feature Plant, Shade Trees, Street Trees
Bloom season - Late Spring, Early Summer
Leaf / Flower color - Green, Dark green / Yellow
1. Start the cold stratification process in the end of the beginning of the year.
2. Place the seeds in a glass bowl and cover with room temperature water. Allow the seeds to soak for a minimum of 24 hours.
3. Hold a handful of sterile peat planting medium under a running faucet until the peat is soaked. Squeeze most of the water out of the peat, leaving it moist but not soggy. Place the moist peat into a zip-lock plastic bag.
4. Remove the seeds from the bowl of water and rinse them off under clean running water. Place up to three seeds into the plastic bag containing the peat. Use more peat and plastic bags if you want to germinate more than three seeds.
5. Push the seeds into the peat and seal the plastic bag. Shake the bag to distribute the peat so that it covers the seeds completely. The seeds must be buried in the moist peat in order to germinate.
6. Place the sealed bag in the bottom of the refrigerator. This will serve as the cold stratification. The seeds need to be kept at +4-+7C (34-46F) for 90 days.
7. Open the plastic bag periodically to make sure the peat is still moist. Add water as needed to restore the moisture.
8. Check the weather forecast after 35 days. You can plant the seeds outdoors if all danger of frost has passed. You can wait up to 55 more days, if there is still a possibility of frost and plant the seeds as late as early summer.
9. Plant the seeds by removing them from the peat and rinsing them with clean water. Bury the seeds ensuring that the seeds are covered. Keep the soil moist until the seeds sprout.
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