New Jersey may be at the southern end of maple sugaring country, but that doesn’t mean we are short on maple trees. There are several parks in the state that conduct maple sugaring demonstrations for schools and other educational purposes. Maples aren’t just good for their maple syrup. They also make great additions to your landscape. Before you go to the nursery to buy a maple tree make sure you know the differences between the many varieties.
Silver maples are named for the way the underside of their leaves “shimmer” in the wind. Silver maples have large green leaves with white undersides. Leaves are lobed with five tips and have a long stem. They can grow up to 80 feet tall and 70 feet wide, providing your yard with plenty of cooling shade. Silver maples require areas with lots of direct sunlight and plenty of room to spread out. These trees can be planted in any soil type so a silver maple would be a great addition to any yard. In the fall the leaves turn to a bright yellow color before falling.
The sugar maple is the king of the maple family. When you think of maple syrup these are the trees that make it. Sugar maples are fast growers and can dominate a yard in under ten years. Sugar maples can reach 80 feet or more in height, with a spread of up to 60 feet, making it a great choice for golf courses, parks, and home landscapes. They naturally grow in nice round shapes and provide plenty of shade from the sweltering sun. In the fall they’ll light up your yard with brilliant shades of yellows, reds, and oranges.
Not as well-known as its cousins, the striped maple is a much shorter species that will hardly ever exceed 25 feet tall. Its leaves are three-lobed and resemble the leaves of other maples. Its bark, however, looks nothing like other maples. The striped maple trees have green bark with long white lines running vertically along its length. As it gets older, the bark turns reddish-brown with dark lines. This is the only maple on the list that we would not recommend as a shade tree. Instead, it can be used as a natural privacy fence or windbreak along your property line or to block the sight of the road.
Red maples can be identified by their noticeably smaller leaves. They can exceed heights of 70 feet making them a great shade tree for the back yard or plant them along your driveway to create a natural archway. In the spring red maples produce tiny pink flowers that attract pollinators. Red maples get their name from the brilliant shades of red they put on in the fall.
No matter where you plant them, maple trees make a great addition to any residential or commercial property. If you are looking for a tree that can pretty much take care of itself then look no further than a maple tree. They do well in poor soils and can usually take a beating from strong winds without receiving any damage. Maples are not known for being susceptible to tree pests but you should always monitor them from time to time to make sure.
Make a maple tree a part of your landscape.
If you notice that your trees are not looking so great and might be caused by a pest, call the pros at Harvest Lawn Care. At Harvest Lawn Care we don’t just make amazing yards with our lawn care program, we also take care of your trees. Our 6-step tree and shrub program provides all the nutrients your tree needs to stay healthy throughout the year.
We also offer trunk injections for wood boring insects, bark sprays, and dormant oil applications.