Alphabetical Plant Listing

Acer palmatum (Japanese Maple)

Smooth Japanese Maple, Amoenum Goup, Palmatum Group, Matsumurae Group, Dissectum Group, Linearilobum Group (Acer palmatum)


Native to Japan, Korea and China, Acer palmatum is a species to which most Japanese Maples belong. It includes a rich variety of deciduous shrubs or small trees with graceful habits, elegantly cut leaves and extraordinarily colorful foliage, particularly in the fall when the leaves warm up to dazzling shades of golden-yellow, red-purple and bronze, before shedding to the ground.

  • Easy to grow, Acer palmatum varieties are cold-hardy, remarkably adaptable to soil and climatic conditions, require little maintenance and are worthy of featured positions such as lawn specimens or near patios where their spectacular leaf color changes throughout the year can be admired.
  • Acer palmatum varieties feature a rounded to broad-rounded habit, with a layered branching structure, and typically grow up to 10-25 ft. tall and wide (3-8 m). There are however countless dwarf Japanese Maple varieties which do not exceed 4-15 ft. (1.2-4.5 m).
  • Some Japanese Maples have an upright form (Acer palmatum) while others feature a weeping habit (Acer palmatum dissectum) with strong cascading weeping branches. Since most Acer palmatum are slow growers, they are perfectly suited to small gardens or large containers.

Guide Information

Hardiness 5 - 9
Heat Zones 2 - 8
Climate Zones 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Acer - Maples
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Fall
Height 4' - 25' (120cm - 7.5m)
Spread 4' - 25' (120cm - 7.5m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Tolerance Rabbit
Landscaping Ideas Patio and Containers
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Japanese Garden, Traditional Garden

mrpeak / 123RF Stock Photo

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.

Guide Information

Hardiness 5 - 9
Heat Zones 2 - 8
Climate Zones 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Acer - Maples
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Fall
Height 4' - 25' (120cm - 7.5m)
Spread 4' - 25' (120cm - 7.5m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Tolerance Rabbit
Landscaping Ideas Patio and Containers
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Japanese Garden, Traditional Garden
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