Japanese Maple – Acer palmatum

This tree is native to Japan, China, North and South Korea, and eastern Mongolia, but hundreds of cultivars are grown in temperate regions around the world for their attractive leaf shapes and colors. Japanese maple is a highly sought after and relatively expensive tree, and it is associated with the high art of oriental gardens. It is classified as a small tree or deciduous shrub, reaching 20-35 feet in height, often growing as an understory plant in woodlands. It may have multiple trunks joining close to the ground, and has a dome-like silhouette. Flowers are in small cymes, the individual flowers with five red or purple sepals and five white petals. Leaves are small and palmately lobed, and the fruit is a winged samara.