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Acer macrophyllum (Bigleaf Maple)

Bigleaf Maple, Big-leaf Maple, Oregon Maple

Acer macrophyllum, Bigleaf Maple, Big-leaf Maple, Oregon Maple, California Native Tree, California Native Plants
Acer macrophyllum, Bigleaf Maple, Big-leaf Maple, Oregon Maple, California Native Tree, California Native Plants
Acer macrophyllum, Bigleaf Maple, Big-leaf Maple, Oregon Maple, California Native Tree, California Native Plants
Acer macrophyllum, Bigleaf Maple, Big-leaf Maple, Oregon Maple, California Native Tree, California Native Plants

Popular on the Pacific Coast, Acer macrophyllum (Bigleaf Maple) is a large deciduous tree of upright habit with a broad, rounded crown of massive, spreading branches, steeply inclined at the tips. Emerging burgundy in spring, the deeply-lobed leaves, up to 12 in. across (30 cm), mature to dark green before turning brilliant shades of orange and yellow in the fall. These leaves are the biggest ever found on any species of maple, hence the common name. In spring, small, fragrant, yellowish-green flowers are borne in drooping clusters, 4-8 in. long (10-20 cm), packed with up to 175 tiny flowers. They give way to two-winged samaras, briefly tinged pinkish-red, before they turn brown when ripe. They persist on the tree in winter, like small Christmas ornaments. The bark is gray to reddish-brown and furrowed. Native to British Columbia, California, Oregon, Washington, Bigleaf Maple occurs naturally in moist woods and along streams in the lower elevations of the coastal ranges and northern Sierra Nevada mountains. The largest maple species in North America, Bigleaf Maple is an impressive shade tree that is particularly showy in autumn. Fast-growing, long-lived (50-200 years), Bigleaf Maple is important as a wildlife tree: many wildlife species use it for food and cover. Honeybees and other insects feed on the nectar. Mule deer, elk, mountain beavers, other rodents browse the foliage.

  • Grows up to 40-70 ft. tall and wide (12-21 m).
  • Performs best in full sun or part shade in moist, well-drained soils. Prefers clay or loamy soil, tolerates sandy soil and serpentine soil.
  • Excellent shade tree for large landscapes and parks.
  • Low maintenance, this plant needs little pruning. Remove diseased, damaged, congested or crossing shoots. Remove any shoots with green leaves.
  • No serious pest or disease issues. Keep an eye out for aphids, verticillium wilt, horse chestnut scale.
  • Shallow spreading roots can crack sidewalks and driveways.
  • Propagate by seed.
  • Native to British Columbia, California, Oregon, Washington.

Requirements

Hardiness 3 - 8
Heat Zones 1 - 8
Climate Zones 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Sapindaceae
Genus Acer
Common names Bigleaf Maple, Maple
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 40' - 70'
(12.2m - 21.3m)
Spread 40' - 70'
(12.2m - 21.3m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, California, Pacific Northwest, Washington, Oregon
Tolerance Clay Soil
Attracts Bees, Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Acer palmatum ‘Fireglow’ (Japanese Maple)
Acer palmatum ‘Ariadne’ (Japanese Maple)
Acer palmatum ‘Sumi-Nagashi’ (Japanese Maple)
Acer palmatum ‘Pixie’ (Japanese Maple)
Acer pseudoplatanus ‘Brilliantissimum’ (Sycamore Maple)
Acer ginnala (Amur Maple)

Recommended Companion Plants

Platanus racemosa (California Sycamore)
Alnus rhombifolia (White Alder)
Umbellularia californica (California Laurel)
Pseudotsuga menziesii (Douglas Fir)

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Shrubs and Trees with Attractive Winter Bark
Best Companion Plants for Camellias
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.
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Requirements

Hardiness 3 - 8
Heat Zones 1 - 8
Climate Zones 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Sapindaceae
Genus Acer
Common names Bigleaf Maple, Maple
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 40' - 70'
(12.2m - 21.3m)
Spread 40' - 70'
(12.2m - 21.3m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, California, Pacific Northwest, Washington, Oregon
Tolerance Clay Soil
Attracts Bees, Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Acer (Maple)
Guides with
Acer (Maple)
Not sure which Acer (Maple) to pick?
Compare Now

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