Friday, June 4, 2010
Acer saccharinum - Silver Maple
Acer saccharinum: Acer is the Latin name for maples; saccharinum refers to the tree's sweet sap. This species yields about half the amount of sugar as A. saccharum.
Native to wet floodplain forests in the Eastern United States. Deeply 5-lobed leaves with sharply serrate margins are dark green on top, but silvery grey underneath, giving the tree its common name. Yellow to orange to red fall color, often seen all together. Tiny corymbs of red polygamous, apetalous flowers in late winter (~March) before the tree leafs out. Samaras with twin seeds are joined at almost 180º. Fruit matures in late spring and persists through the summer. Bark is light silver-grey, turning darker grey with maturity with narrow fissures and scaly plates.