Virtues: Rocky Mountain maple (Acer glabrum) boasts a pleasing shape and beautiful fall foliage. It’s an adaptable tree that can thrive in a range of growing conditions.
Common name: Rocky Mountain maple, Douglas maple
Botanical name:Acer glabrum
Exposure: Full sun to light shade
Season: Year-round for structure; fall for colorful foliage
Foliage: Rocky Mountain maple’s foliage has the typical lobes of maple leaves. They are toothed, with a medium green color through summer and then they turn gorgeous shades of yellow and orange in the fall.
Habit: A deciduous tree that grows between 10 and 30 feet tall, with a narrow, upright crown. It often develop multiple trunks.
Origins: Acer glabrum is a maple species native to woods and ravines of the western United States and Canada into southeast Alaska, including both sides of the Rockies. It can be found above 4,500 feet.
How to grow Rocky Mountain maple: Plant in full sun or light shade, in well-drained soil of any type. Rocky Mountain maple prefers even moisture but it can also tolerate periods of drought. Avoid pruning this tree to allow it to develop its own lovely shape. However if pruning becomes necessary, do so in the summer, after the tree has completely leafed out. USDA Zones 4–8.
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