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Red Snakebark Maple Acer capillipes

Phonetic Spelling
AY-ser cap-ILL-ih-peez
Description

Snakebark maple is a low maintinance small deciduous tree or large shrub in the Sapindaceae (soapberry) family native to the high elevation Japan.  Most easily identified by the interesting olive colored bark marked with narrow white stripes that resemble a snake, hence the common name. The genus Acer means maple and the species name cappillus means hair and pes means foot in Latin in reference to its thin flower and fruit stalks. 

Snakebark maple prefers cool summer climates where it can optimally preform in the landscape.  Part shade is best though will tolerate full sun and medium moist, well-drained acidic soils.   The canopy is rounded and multitrunked and may reach heights of up to 40 feet.  

Flowers appear in mid-spring, are greenish white and fairy insignificant, followed by winged samara fruits.  The leaves are reddish in the spring, and mature to dark green.  In the fall it changes to a striking orange-red color adding interest to the landscape.  

Plant it as a shade or street tree though this plant may be difficult to find in cultivation.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No serious problems.  

 

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#deciduous#small tree#shade tree#full sun tolerant#heat tolerant#wildlife plant#moths#samaras#deciduous shrub#low maintenance#fall interest#street tree#nighttime garden#striped leaves#pollinator plant#green bark#multitrunked#larval host plant#deciduous tree#moth larvae#partial shade tolerant#imperial moth
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#deciduous#small tree#shade tree#full sun tolerant#heat tolerant#wildlife plant#moths#samaras#deciduous shrub#low maintenance#fall interest#street tree#nighttime garden#striped leaves#pollinator plant#green bark#multitrunked#larval host plant#deciduous tree#moth larvae#partial shade tolerant#imperial moth
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Acer
    Species:
    capillipes
    Family:
    Sapindaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Japan
    Wildlife Value:
    Members of the genus Acer support Imperial Moth (Eacles imperialis) larvae which have one brood per season and appear from April-October in the south. Adult Imperial Moths do not feed.
    Play Value:
    Shade
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    Heat tolerant
    Dimensions:
    Height: 30 ft. 0 in. - 35 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 30 ft. 0 in. - 40 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Multi-trunked
    Rounded
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    24-60 feet
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Samara
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Attractive winged samara 3/4" long in fall
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Green
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Insignificant
    Raceme
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Greenish white flowers 1/3' on 2.5" to 4" pendulous raceme in mid-spring.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Shape:
    Obovate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are 4 to 7 in., opposite, and simple. The colors of the leaves vary from new leaves being bright red, to bright green in summer, and then to yellow to red fall color.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Green
    Bark Description:
    Olive green with narrow white vertical striping
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Surface:
    Smooth (glabrous)
    Stem Description:
    Young branches are greenish to reddish brown with white stripes; most heat tolerant snakebark maple. The tree has low branches and a rounded head.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Lawn
    Landscape Theme:
    Asian Garden
    Nighttime Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Shade Tree
    Attracts:
    Moths
    Pollinators