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A picture of a Red Maple

Red Maple

Acer rubrum

Also known as

Canadian Maple, Scarlet Maple, Swamp Maple, Soft Maple, Red maple, Maple

Acer rubrum (summertime) by Bmerva (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Full Sun
Moderate care
Light watering
Frost Hardy


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size








25 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has no fragrance

More images of Red Maple

A bunch of Acer rubrum seeds hanging from a tree
A close up of some green Acer rubrum foliage
An Acer rubrum tree growing in a park showing red autumn colour
The young green leaves of a Acer rubrum plant

Red Maple Overview

Acer rubrum is a bushy, medium to large, deciduous tree species in the Sapindaceae family. The Latin word 'rubrum' means 'red' and in this context, refers to the fantastic autumn colouration of this Acer's leaves - its common names including Red Maple and Scarlet Maple, amongst others. It is a low maintenance, architectural tree that has many sub-species. This hardy (down to -20C) tree forms a rounded to open crown and it can typically reach 30m in height. Clusters of tiny, red flowers appear in spring, followed by lobed, dark green leaves which have a pale blue-white underside. Foliage is arranged oppositely on branches, and the 5–10cm long and wide leaves have serrated edges. Acer Rubrum likes a sheltered position in full sun and needs well-draining soil for optimal growth. It also prefers an acid soil, which helps to maximise its autumn colour.

Common problems with Red Maple

How to propagate Red Maple





By budding in summer.

Special features of Red Maple

Attractive leaves

Other uses of Red Maple

A low maintenance tree it is grown as a specimen tree in parks and gardens for it's architectural form and autumn colour. It is also used commercially for the production of maple syrup and lumber.


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