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Acer maximowiczianum is often confused with:
Acer triflorum Acer triflorum bark
Native alternative(s) for Acer maximowiczianum:
Acer glabrum Acer glabrum var. diffusum
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Acer saccharum subsp. leucoderme  Acer leucoderme
Acer saccharum form
Acer buergerianum Acer buergerianum tree

Acer maximowiczianum

Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Acer nikoense
Phonetic Spelling
AY-ser maks-im-oh-wiks-ee-AY-num
Description

The Nikko maple has smooth, gray bark and is a deciduous shade tree of the Sapindaceae (soapberry) family.  It is native to China and Japan and the leaves are distinct among maples for consisting of three separate leaflets. The genus Acer means maple in Latin and the species name maximowiczianum honors Carl Johann Maximowicz a botanist who discovered the tree growing in Japan in the 1860s.  The common name Nikko comes from a town in Japan.

It has a picturesque, vase-shaped, round-topped form and reaches height and width of 20 to 30 feet.  The vibrant red-orange fall color is why it is primarily grown. Unlike other maples, this plant does not have a traditional maple leaf. Each of its leaves are divided into three leaves.

The Nikko maple grows best in sites with full sun and moist, well-drained soil.  It is particularly resistant to insect pests and very easy to transplant.

This tree supports pollinators like moths making it an excellent addition to a nighttime garden, a pollinator garden, or a specimen tree.  Take advantage of the sticking fall color and vase shape to provide interest in the landscape in the fall and winter.

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

 

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#purple#deciduous#shade tree#full sun tolerant#interesting bark#wildlife plant#purple leaves#moths#yellow flowers#samaras#red leaves#yellow leaves#fall interest#well-drained soil#pest resistant#transplant#nighttime garden#children's garden#playground plant#shimmer#pollinator plant#larval host plant#winged seeds#deciduous tree#bird friendly#butterfly friendly#moth larvae#imperial moth
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#purple#deciduous#shade tree#full sun tolerant#interesting bark#wildlife plant#purple leaves#moths#yellow flowers#samaras#red leaves#yellow leaves#fall interest#well-drained soil#pest resistant#transplant#nighttime garden#children's garden#playground plant#shimmer#pollinator plant#larval host plant#winged seeds#deciduous tree#bird friendly#butterfly friendly#moth larvae#imperial moth
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Acer
    Species:
    maximowiczianum
    Family:
    Sapindaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    China/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:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Pieces Used in Games
    Shade
    Wildlife Food Source
    Wind Shimmer
    Dimensions:
    Height: 20 ft. 0 in. - 30 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 20 ft. 0 in. - 30 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Rounded
    Vase
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    24-60 feet
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Samara
    Fruit Length:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Width:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    1 to 2 in. thick pubescent fruit
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Panicle
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    .5 in. yellow flowers in clusters of 3 on a drooping panicle. Blooms in May.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Oblong
    Ovate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are 2 to 5 in., opposite, and compound trifoliate. In the fall, they are rich red, yellow-red, and purple. Leaf colors may include green and light green.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Dark Gray
    Light Brown
    Light Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Smooth
    Bark Description:
    Bark is a smooth gray to grayish brown
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Buds:
    Hairy tips
    Stem Cross Section:
    Angular
    Stem Surface:
    Smooth (glabrous)
    Stem Description:
    Slender, angled brownish prominently lenticelled with pilose pubescence near the end of stem. Glabrous the 2nd year.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Recreational Play Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Children's Garden
    Nighttime Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Shade Tree
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Moths
    Pollinators
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Insect Pests