Origin: the East of North America. Habitat: the silver maple does well in all kinds of soils, including humid or liable to flooding, the banks of watercourses and the banks of lakes. It accepts shade but prefers sunny situations. Quick growth Height:20 m tall. Shape: irregular, with insulated branches, a bit like the Ginkgo. Trunk: in forest, the silver maple sometimes has numerous stems, because seedling was beheaded by the grazing of animals.
Light grey bark which exfoliate into strips. Leaves with pointed lobes, deep sinuses (especially variety with leaves laciniated) and clear back (hence its name). Flowers: the silver maple carries at the same time male flowers, with stamens, female flowers, with pistil, and flowers hermaphrodite (with stamens and pistil). The greenish inflorescences appear in February-March, before leaves.
Sugar Maple, A. saccharum
Origin: Centre and the East of North America (emblem of Canada), introduced into Europe in 1753 by the American botanist John Batram (1699-1777). Habitat:The sugar maple does not tolerate poorly drained soils, which distinguishes it from the silver maple. It fears clay soils and the too strong sunlight. It adapts well to shade. Lifespan: 200 years.
Size: 40 m in America, less than 25 m in Europe. Bark: shedding in long rigid flakes Greenish flowers, in April, before leaves, in corymbs sessile (without peduncles). Leaves in 3-5 lobes less deeply indented than silver maple, acuminate (pointed), without teeth. The leaves of the sugar maple resemble those of the Norway Maple, but their petiole does not contain latex. They turn to golden-purple at fall.
Use: the sap stored in the phloem is recovered in February-March and used (maple syrup), since the epoch of the Indians. A grown-up tree produces 100 - 150 litres of sap.
Tradition: since 1965, maple leaf with sugar occupies the centre of the national flag of Canada and constitutes the symbol of Canada.
Negundo maple or Maple with Ash leaves
Etymology: "negundo" comes from the name of a tree of Bengal nirgundo, with similar leaves. Origin: the centre-East of North America. Introduced into France in 1688. Habitat: humid soils (as the Alder and the Willow). Sunny fields. Height: 20 m tall.
Ovoid Form. Trunk: often numerous trunks. Lifespan: short (80 years). Species dioecious (male feet and distinct female feet). Flowers: male feet carry tiny flowers which float on long filament, before the hatching of leaves, in March-April. The female flowers are smaller still, greenish, grouped in clusters. Leaves composed of 3 - 7 leaflets (hence the allusion to the Ash), very fine, barely toothed margin. Fruits in clusters (among other maples, the fruits are packed against each other in bunch). Samaras is fine (as leaves) and greenish. They stay on the tree all winter long.
Variety: there is a variety of negundo maple with variegated leaves (>>>>)
Red Maple, Acer rubrum
Height: 35 m tall. Origin: the East of North America. Habitat: Soils humid and well drained or moderately drained are suitable for the red maple. It tolerates drought, its growth stopping until conditions improve. Bark: smooth on the young red maple, it hardens and becomes scaly as the tree matures. Leaves identical to those of the Norway mpale. In autumn, they become bright red, hence the name of this maple. Flowers: in red corymbs. It is planted for its nice autumnal colours, yellow with orange.