Maple Descriptions - Garden Design Nursery
We try very
ery hard to provide accura
bout each Japanese maple
cultivar. Most of the following information
rmation is derived
ed from personal experience,
d books and material, and
an d from
fr om respected
ed growers. Many of an individual
cultivar's attributes are dependent
ent on growing
onditions, especially size.
e, please use the following
wi th due
d ue regard
d to the amount of
ee might even
n in containers
iners will be smaller,
as their access
s to nutrients
a nd water
er iss restricted.
ed. As a
ays, we are available to
tifolium'' is a
n as the
t he "Dancing
g Peacock" tree. The
tic fall color
a s seen
se en here
to the name.
ern leaf maple
ap le has
h as large
wi th narrow
row inner lobes
ssected outer lobes.
nto a rounded top
to tree up to 16 feet
awa hime' is a mediummedium-sized
mre d bark
ba rk tree
larr to its
i ts parent
go kaku', with a mature size
listed at a smaller
t en ffee
ence has shown
wn thiss cultivar
to be fast
wh en young.
ful fall colorss of yellow,
w, oranges and
n z ashi' is
s an upright
mall to medium-sized tree with
wi th subtle
ation on small,
en leaves. Forms an upright, vase
shape, with its mature
ed as 13 feet. We like the way this type
ds a feathery
y look to the leaves. A good choice for
‘Beni hoshi' has several cool attributes
utes that make
ke it desirable. It is
ered a dwarf, and has rather unique
sh ovate leaves that
ge red in the Spring. As the season
s, the first flush of
leaves turn green, providing
ng a contrasting
und to a later flush
of red. Mature size list
a t 6 feet.
own in Spring.
'Beni kawa' is an excellent large-growing
re d bark
ba rk maple.
eratures and winter sun turn
hes a salmon
habit seems less vase-like than
mo re open in form.
Listed mature size is up to
t o 30 feet
eett in height.
wn in Fall
Fa ll color.
o n bamboo-like,
leaves.. This feature
ds a very
ng. The leaf color
ons to red over
n as Summer
ng in full
sun willll induce a more
e, but to truly enjoy
th e bamboobamb
ke’ in part-shade
art-shade for a mo
ed att 26 feet
u’ will prove to be
b e an essential
al tree for almost
ale yellow bark
arkk that becomes highlighted
se to winter
nter cold, this cultivar never fails
t o ca
‘Bihou’ is a vigorous grower to 12 to 14 feet.
odgood' is perhapss the best known
wn red leaf, upright tree
form cultivar. Leaves emerge
ge a dark
holding this color
into mid-summer. The transition
n to Fall
all color is shown at left.
odgood' is somewhat
e to more
red leaf introductions,
an d it will
h a broad
oad rounded top
o 30 feet.
o r y ' iis
la e growing
red leaf maple.
at we think makes
th is tree
ial is how
h ow it
i naturally assumes
a nd branch
is a bright red, changing
g to green
i n mid-summer,, making a
ground for late-summer
eaf pushes. Mature
ture size listed at
ty four feet.
gundy Lace' has deeply
ho ld their
red color wellll into
er. The leaf edges
a re toothed,
ature form is spreading
wi th an
a n ultimate
0 feet high and
an d wide.
red color quite
e wellll in
i n shade.
t t erfly' has
le edges, which emerge with
i n Spring.
ture form is vase shaped. Prefers some
ade to prevent
y useful to add a highlight to a shady
ature size listed
isted at eighteen feet.
underr 'Shin chisio'
…please see this
mson Queen' is perhaps the
th e best
be st known
r ed laceleaf
ee. Its fine
ibutes include beautiful red,
an d a strongly
eping form. Here in the
th e Southeast,
end to change
reen overtones. Fall color is
i s a reliable
ed. Shown in
ng. Mature size listed
a twelve feet
ten feet tall.
o l d e n ' ha
olor attributes for a
leaf. The leaves
e in Spring
with a red-gold
ed-gold cast with
ve in color,
an slowly change
nge to g
t he leaves
tain a light green
s to handle
fu ll sun
a re oranges
reds. It iiss a mo
erald Lace' iiss an incredibly vigorous green
es. Shown here
he with maroon fall color. Expect
ectt it tto
ow as a
e up to
t o 12 feet
eet wide .
wide irregular, sweeping bush, with a mature size
This cultivar always gets attention.
'Emmitt's Pumpkin' is another interesting large leaf Acer japonicum.
Fall color is a fantastic display with orange tone predominating on a
round shaped leaf, hence the name "pumpkin". Expected final size is
12 feet tall.
'Emperor I' (Emperor one) is the upright growing red leaf maple that
has several features making it a more popular choice over the
'Bloodgood' cultivar. Important to us here in the Southeast is 'Emperor
I' usually leafs out several weeks later, making it less susceptible to
late freezes and frosts.We also appreciate that it has a faster growth
‘Fjellheim' is one of our favorite winter interest trees. Reportedly a
witches'-broom of 'Sango kaku', the cold and sun brings out the
stunning coral color of the bark. Since 'Fjellheim' grows into more of
an intermediate sized bush form, the bark color is at the viewer's eye
level. Plus, each mature leafbud seems to "double push" a small
subsidiary leaf, making 'Fjellheim' appear extremely full. Mature size
perhaps ten feet.
'Garnet' is an extremely vigorous laceleaf with a more red-orange
color, making it distinctive from the other red dissectums. Branch
growth of 3 to 4 feet in a year is common, making 'Garnet' one of the
largest growing red lace leafs. Mature size listed at 13 feet tall and
wide, in a irregular, mounding form.
'Green Hornet' is the green laceleaf that features red Fall color. It is a
vigorous grower when young. Mature size listed at 10 feet tall and
wider as it forms a mound. It is a great choice when you need to fill a
'Green Mist' is a laceleaf similar to 'Waterfall' but features fall colors
more in the orange-red range. 'Green Mist' is fairly vigorous and a
strong weeper. The name is based on the leaf color and delicate
appearance, lending a soft, misty overall effect. ‘Green Mist’ forms a
cascading mound up to ten feet tall.
'Hanami nishiki' leaves emerge a delicate yellow-green with edges
tinged in orange-red. The leaves are among the smallest of the
palmatums, making it a real gem in a smaller garden. 'Hanami nishiki'
is a true dwarf, with a mature size of 7 feet listed. We have several
specimens grafted on a 2 foot standard to give them height and allow
‘Hefner’s Red’ is the most promising upright cultivar for keeping a
maroon red leaf color throughout Summer here in the hot and humid
Southeast. We hope this cultivar will prove to be a perfect replacement
for ‘Bloodgood’ without the tendency for the leaves to change to bronze
red. We are working hard to produce ‘Hefner’s Red Select’ in larger
‘Higasa yama' puts on an incredible display in Spring . As the new
buds emerge, the tightly curled yellow leaflets are accompanied by red
elongated leaf sheaths, creating an eye catching color contrast. The
new leaves continue the show, as the leaf lobes have green centers
with cream colored edges blushed with pink. The small leaves have
toothed margins. Growth habit is upright, with a final size near 20 feet.
'Hime shojo' is a very rare and remarkable red leaf dwarf. The
leaves are very small and do not display the short, blunted middle lobe
typical of dwarf varieties derived from witches' brooms. Red color
seems to hold very well in shade. ‘Hime shojo' is slow growing, making
it perfect for container culture or bonsai.
‘Hubb's Red Willow' is a great addition to the strap leaf cultivars.
Considered to be a semi-dwarf , the beautiful red leaves have long,
narrow lobes, presenting a delicate appearance. Fall color is a bright
red. Height in ten years is suggested to be ten feet.
‘Inaba shidare' is a favorite red laceleaf for the Southeast. Purple-red
leaves emerge a bit later than some other similar cultivars, and hold
their red color well into Summer. The vigorous growth habit of 'Inaba
shidare' is considered more open than other dissectums, giving it a
more architectural appearance. Suggested mature size is twelve feet
tall and as wide.
'Itame nishiki' is a unusual example of variegated maples. The
medium green leaves are edged in dark red, giving the variegation a
subtle appearance. Growth is considered bushy, on slender branches,
giving the tree a very graceful air. Probably a smaller tree, growing to
twelve to fifteen feet. Shown in Spring.
'Japanese Sunrise' is an exciting addition to the red barked cultivars.
Winter bark color is bright red on the side of the tree that receives
direct sun, with orange red progressing to yellow on the shaded side.
In Spring, bright yellow-green leaves slowly change to a bright green
for Summer. 'Japanese Sunrise' is considered tolerant of heat and full
sun. Shown in fall colors. Mature size listed at twenty feet.
'Jiro shidare' is an unusual form of a cascading maple in that the
leaves are not dissected, but are small green leaves typical of the
species Acer palmatum. This cultivar is perfect for a sturdy, yet
graceful backdrop in a garden. The leaves have long petioles, carried
on long, pendulous branches.
Mature size up to ten feet tall and ten feet wide. Shown in Fall colors.
‘Kagiri nishiki’ is our current favorite green and white variegated
maple. This cultivar has been very vigorous for us. We seen little to no
reversion of the variegation back to solid green leaves. Please provide
at least afternoon shade to minimize burning of the white portions of
the leaves. The habit is open, vase shaped, with mature height up to
'Kamagata' is a wonderful dwarf suggested for demanding growing
conditions, such as full sun. We love it for its delicate appearance. The
small leaves have long lobes strongly tapered to a point. New leaves
are a fresh green with red tinged edges. 'Kamagata' grows into a
rounded bush form up to 6 feet tall. Fall colors range from yellows,
oranges, and reds.
‘Kandy Kitchen’ always attracts attention in the nursery. It originated
as a witches’-broom, and has a very useful form for small spaces and
container growing. ‘Kandy Kitchen’ has pink-red leaves in Spring,
changing to purple-red, evolving to green just in time to contrast with a
late flush of new pink-red growth. Forms a shrub up to six feet.
‘Ki hachijo’ is not just another green leaf maple. This cultivar displays
yellow-gold Fall color suffused with red. We appreciate the sturdy,
multi-branched forms as it grows to perhaps eighteen feet. The bark is
wonderful, showing white streaking against medium green. Best used
as garden tree to provide a background for seasonal plants. When
Winter comes, ‘Ki hachijo’ makes an outstanding silhouette to enjoy.
'Kiyohime' is another versatile dwarf. This cultivar forms a bun shape,
often more flat topped than round. Grafted on a standard, 'Kiyohime'
provides the perfect form for under planting companion plants. The
tiny, bright green leaves emerge with rusty red edges. Excellent
choice for alpine style gardens. Estimated width at maturity is ten feet,
so please leave space for this delightful dwarf.
‘Koto no ito’ is wonderfully useful green strapleaf maple. The leaf
shapes are a mixture of narrow lobed leaves on newer branches, along
with thread-like leaves no more than 1 or 2 millimeters wide on older
wood. 'Koto-no-ito' is fairly vigorous when young, but mature size is
considered at ten feet. Despite its delicate appearance, this tree does
well in full sun..
'Krazy Krinkle' has very interesting leaves that are well described
by its name. The deeply divided leaves have incised, ruffled lobes that
twist in different directions when they emerge. Spring and Summer
color is medium green, with excellent Fall color as shown. New to us,
'Krazy Krinkle' is a vigorous grower that should make a medium size
tree to eighteen feet.
‘Kurui jishi’ is a perfect choice when something unusual for your
garden is desired. Considered a dwarf growing up to six feet, the tiny
leaves roll into tubes with an extraordinary hook on the tip! Another
noticeable trait is how the upright tending branches mimic tendrils of
rising smoke. ‘Kurui jishi’ tends to widen as it grows. Fall colors are
yellow to orange. Recommended for any collector.
'Lemon Lime Lace' is laceleaf maple named for the leaf colors.
In Spring the deeply dissected leaves emerge a light lemon yellow,
changing to lime green for summer. The form is described as an
irregular, compact mound. Fall color is orange.
'Mardi Gras' has a leaf color display as festive as its name implies.
Overall leaf color is green with portions or sometimes the entire leaf
displaying pink or white variegation. New branches are often striped
in pink. 'Mardis Gras' should be planted in shade to part-shade to
minimize leaf burn of variegated leaves. It is a vigorous grower.
'Mimaye' has an almost tropical look about it. We consider it a semidwarf, with soft green leaves. The middle lobes are long, tapering to a
point, and this coupled with the leaves relaxed manner in which they
hang gives the tree a very soft and full appearance. Though delicate
looking, 'Mimaye' holds up to full sun well. Shown in Spring leaf.
'Momenshide' has leaves that remind us of feathers. The five lobes
are completely divided and each is attached individually to the branch
shoot with hardly any petiole. The lobes assume different angles,
adding to the feathery effect. The dark green leaves emerge in Spring
with rust-red edges. 'Momenshide' will benefit if planted where it will
receive some shade.
'Moonfire' continues to be a favorite among the purple leaf maples
for us. The dark purple red color holds well into Summer. The dark
purple of the branches is another handsome attribute. We consider
'Moonfire' possessing an average rate of growth, eventually reaching
twenty feet with a broad, rounded crown. Fall color is a reliable bright
red, as shown.
'Murasaki kiyohime' is a favorite dwarf maple. The small leaves
emerge edged in purple-red in Spring, changing to green for
Summer. Growth habit is upright and shrub-like, with ascending
purple branches. Fall colors are in the yellows and oranges,
sometime with reds. Mature size is up to six feet, in time. Shown in
'Nuresagi' is an under utilized purple leaf cultivar. The lobes of the
leaf are slender and widely separated, giving them an airy, floating
appearance. The leaves have been described as having an opalescent
quality when new. Another favorite attribute is the dark purple color of
the newer branches and twigs. This cultivar has been very vigorous for
‘'Ogura yama' is an outstanding Acer japonicum cultivar that has
proven to be quite tough. This strongly growing upright tree has
strong branches and round leaves with slightly ovate lobes on older
branches. The leaves have a pink orange flush as they emerge in
Spring, turning to a medium green. Fall color is an outstanding red.
This was our only maple to escape any damage from the Easter 2007
‘Okushimo’ has unusual leaves with outer edges that roll inward,
appearing tube like. The lighter colored leaf underside adds an almost
variegated appearance. The growth habit is very upright and vase
shaped, making ‘Okushimo’ perfect for narrow growing spaces, but can
get as tall as twenty feet. Fall color is a beautiful gold.
‘Omure yama’ features a weeping, willowy form when mature. The
green leaves are of the matsumurae, (deeply divided) leaf form, which
further enhance the willowy appearance. The Fall color is a beautiful
red-orange, as shown. This excellent specimen for a garden will need a
bit of room, as the mature size is listed at sixteen feet tall and sixteen
'Orange Dream' provides an awesome spring display as new leaves
emerge a dark orange, which transitions to yellow edged in orange.
As Spring progresses, the leaf color changes to bright yellow green.
'Orange Dream' works well in a shaded garden area, providing a
lighter element. It forms a bushy upright shrub to twelve feet. Early
Spring color shown.
'Orangeola' is a fantastic laceleaf for the Southeast. It performs well
in heat and humidity. The coarsely dissected leaves emerge a red
orange, but can be red purple as well. As summer progresses,the
leaves become reddish-green, providing a background for a second
flush of red. A vigorous grower when young, 'Orangeola' has strongly
draping branches, and forms a mound up to ten feet.
'Osaka zuki' is well known for beautiful red Fall leaf colors. But
Spring provides a wonderful display as fresh leaves emerge in light
green bathed in pastel tones of pinks and yellow. 'Osaki zuki' leaves
are rather large, and have attractive ovate lobes tapering to a point.
We always recommend this green leaf maple for tough situations, and
the outstanding fire red fall color never disappoints! Matures at 24 feet.
'Raraflora' provides an interesting contrast to other green lace leafs.
Spring brings out light green leaves with edges and tips in pastels of
yellow, orange, and pinks. As the season progresses, the leaves
change to a yellow-green. Branching is rather upright, but 'Raraflora'
still develops into a beautiful mound. Fall color is an excellent bright
red. Shown in Spring. Mature size listed at ten feet by ten feet.
‘Red Dragon’ has deep purple dissectum leaves on dark purple
branches. This cultivar may be the best choice for a red weeping
laceleaf that does not get too big. ‘Red Dragon’ also has a reputation
for holding its purple color in both full sun and shaded conditions. Be
patient, it is a slow growing, compact tree. Mature size listed eight feet
by eight feet.
‘Red Pygmy’ is one of the wonderful cultivars that provide leaves of
ever changing color. The narrow, strap like leaves emerge purple-red
in Spring. The color transitions to red-green, but holds more purple on
the shaded leaves. Fall color is gold yellow. ‘Red Pygmy’ is slow
growing, and will eventually form a round topped small tree at ten feet
'Sango kaku' is also known as the Coral Bark maple, named for the
red tones the bark develops for Winter. Without a doubt, the brilliant
reds add wonderful interest in a otherwise drab time of year. In Spring,
leaves emerge a refreshing light green with reddish tinges. The
growing habit is strongly upright, developing a spreading top in age.
Fall leaf color is mostly yellows with some red and orange. Mature size
listed at twenty four feet.
'Satsuki beni' displays attractive red tips on green leaves as they
emerge , giving the appearance of red painted fingernails. It is a fine
example of the amoenum group, in which the leaf shape is strongly
convex or ovate, tapering to a sharp point. The young branches show
distinct white flecks on green bark. 'Satsuki beni' is a strong grower,
reaching twenty feet or more in maturity. Fall color is shown.
'Seiryu' is unusual in that it has an upright form instead of the usual
weeping habit of laceleaf Japanese maples. The appearance is very
airy. 'Seiryu' is a vigorous grower, and the green leaves do well in full
sun. Fall colors are wonderful crimsons and reds. Mature size twenty
four feet tall by sixteen feet wide. ‘Seiryu’ is well recommended as a
selection for the Southeast.
'Shaina' is another example of red dwarf maples, and matures into a
compact globe shape. Its small leaves emerge bright red in Spring,
then become a more purple red that holds well into Summer. With a
mature size near ten feet, 'Shaina' is suitable for smaller spaces or
'Shin chisio' puts on Spring show of brilliant pink-red color as the
leaves emerge. After several weeks, the leaf color becomes green. It
forms well-branched bush form up to sixteen feet. 'Shin chisio' is
recommended for containers and bonsai. It is also known 'Chisio
Improved', but this is an illegitimate name in cultivar recognition. The
correct name means " new Chisio".
'Shin deshojo' is another cultivar that has brilliant scarlet Spring
leaf color. The red color lasts about a month, then the leaves transition
to green. 'Shin deshojo' is expected to reach ten feet tall and six feet
wide, in a bush form. It is an improved selection of the well-known
'Skeeter's Broom' is a red dwarf with a stiffly upright form, making
it a great choice for a tight spot in the garden or a patio planter.
Beautiful purple red leaves emerge in Spring, holding color well into
Summer. This is a very vigorous grower when young. Fall color is red.
Mature size is listed at six feet.
'Sumi nagashi' has large, deeply divided leaves which emerge a
bright purple-red. As Summer nears, the leaf color becomes infused
with green, eventually displaying a dark green with purple overtones.
This color provides the perfect backdrop for the maturing bright red
winged seeds, known as samaras. 'Sumi nagashi' is a vigorous grower
with a mature size listed at twenty feet tall. Fall color is shown.
is perhaps unanimously the preferred red laceleaf
for the Southeast. It holds up well to the heat and humidity of the
region. In Spring, the dissected leaves emerge a crimson red, soon
changing to purple-red. 'Tamuke yama' holds this color very well into
Summer. Fall color is crimson-red. Its habit is strongly cascading, with
mature size nearing thirteen feet tall and as wide.
'Terrell's Tree' is a local introduction, named from the fantastic
collection of mature maples grown by our neighbor, Terrell Owens.
The large, deeply-divided leaves emerge a bright purple-red, becoming
green with purple tones. The strong branches are green, making a cool
contrast to the new leaves. Fall color is red. The habit is upright, and
should mature near twenty feet tall.
'Trompenburg' is a prized dark red leafed maple. What makes it
unique is the way the edges of the leaf lobes roll downward, giving the
leaves a three dimensional appearance. The overall effect is elegant.
In Spring, leaves emerge purple-red, and the color holds well into
Summer. 'Trompenburg' is a vigorous upright grower, reaching twenty
feet plus in maturity.
'Twombly's Red Sentinel' has a columnar form that makes it perfect
for tight areas where other maples would eventually get too wide. Its
superb purple-red leaves are held on ascending branches which are
themselves a deep purple. 'Twombly's Red Sentinel' is an exciting
addition to the designer's palette. It is a medium sized tree for a maple,
approximately twelve feet tall and six feet wide.
'Viridis' could be considered the standard of the green lace leafs. It
is an attractive weeping form, with fresh green leaves. Our specimen
thrives in open shade. The fall colors of gold, oranges and sometimes
red, never disappoint. Mature size considered to be thirteen feet tall
and as wide.
‘Vitifolium’ features big, bold leaves resembling its namesake, the
grape leaf. As with most Acer japonicum cultivars, the fall colors are
remarkable. The color begins gold, then change to crimsons and
scarlet, usually showing all three colors at the same time! ‘Vitifolium’
grows into a broad upright tree. Please leave room for this magnificent
cultivar, the mature size is listed at thirty feet.
'Waterfall' is another desirable green laceleaf cultivar. What seems
to distinguish it from the other popular green dissectum is a stronger
draping tendency. Leaves are a bright green, and are reported to hold
up well in full sun. Fall colors are in the yellows, sometimes with hints
of red. 'Waterfall' matures at ten feet.
'Watnong' is a favorite laceleaf of ours, as the finely cut leaves
provided a variety of colors depending on the season. Spring brings
forth a display of pinks, salmons, and oranges over soft greens as
the new leaves emerge. Summer leaves of light green backdrop the
pastels of new leaf pushes. 'Watnong' seems to take full sun well.
Mature size listed as ten feet tall and as wide.
'Wou nishiki' has deeply divided leaves with deep serrations on their
edges, giving a feathery appearance. In Spring the new leaves emerge
a bright green, with the edges tinged with red. 'Wou nishiki' is quite
useful in the landscape, as it has a very upright form,perfect for tight
spaces. It is recommended for full sun. Mature size listed at twelve to
fourteen feet. Fall color is red.