Japanese Maples are known for their unique form, delicate and colorful leaves, and smooth bark. These traits give Japanese maples year-round appeal for any garden or landscape, both traditional as well as themed. The amount to choose from is quite overwhelming, as there are more than 300 cultivars available today. With so many options, it’s easy to picture one of these serene beauties in your landscape.
General Information, Culture, and Care
Japanese Maples are extremely adaptable to soil and climate conditions. Most upright forms attain a height of 15 to 25 feet in 20 years. Most weeping varieties (dissectums) mature at about five feet with a ten-foot spread over 20 years.
Green forms take full sun very well, although afternoon shade will prevent slight sunburn. Most variegated forms need semi-shade to keep lighter parts of their leaves from crisping. Red cultivars of many weeping varieties need some shade as well. However, note that they will not develop typical deep red colors without the benefit of strong sunlight for part of the day.
Japanese Maples have fibrous root networks which stay at the upper level of the soil. They are not overly competitive for water and are therefore compatible with most shrubbery.
A uniform level of moisture supply, whether great or small, must be maintained. Wet periods followed by very dry ones, or vice versa, can cause leaf drop, leaf scorch, or twig die back. Watering the leaves in full sun during the hot summer months will also cause leaf scorch.
Light fertilization of Japanese Maples is recommended using Jack’s All-Purpose Plant Food or Espoma Organic Plant Tone. Over-fertilization may cause your tree to become leggy, or even cause the foliage to burn.
Acidic or well-drained, neutral soil is preferable. Japanese Maples thrive under the same conditions as Rhododendrons.
Japanese Maple Varieties
Below are just a handful of Japanese Maple varieties carried by Meadows Farms. Our Japanese Maples come in many different sizes, may vary from each location, and may not be available at certain times. Please contact your nearest Meadows Farms nursery for sizing and availability information.