Maple trees make stunning landscape additions for their leafy canopies and vibrant seasonal leaf colours. If planting a maple tree is on your list this year, think about the scope of the full-grown tree, both height and width. Take note of any overhead wires and be aware of underground pipes. Avoid planting your maple seedling too close to your house or other buildings so you tree has enough space to spread out and grow in the sun. Three of the most popular maple trees planted by BC backyard enthusiasts are the Japanese Maple, Paperbark Maple and Fern-Leaf Maple.

Japanese Maple Trees

Mature trees display a characteristic dome canopy with some varieties growing to a height of 20 feet – but they also can be kept small indefinitely with proper pruning. There are several varieties of Japanese Maple trees, including a dwarf cultivar that can be grown in containers on your patio. They are naturally variable, growing in different forms with several rather than one main trunk. They are native to Japan, Korea, Mongolia and Russia, which proves they are hardy trees suitable for BC climate zones, and easy for us to grow. Japanese maple trees produce tiny flowers followed by samara fruit, or nutlets, in the shape of wings that spin as they fall and can travel a considerable distance on the wind. The flowers and seeds are a valuable food source for honeybees, bumblebees, other pollinators and birds.

Paperbark Maple

Native to Central China, this species is named for its papery orange and reddish bark. This deciduous beauty can grow up to 30 feet tall and just as wide, so give it lots of space when planting. They are slow growing and can take decades to reach full height, but like all mature maples, provide stunning natural backdrops. The Paperbark Maple is a good choice for clay soils that are problematic for most trees, and can be planted in full sun to part shade. They need watering for the first two to three years to keep the developing roots damp, then they become drought resistant with hardiness to zone 4.

Fern-Leaf Japanese Maple

Also called the Full Moon Maple, these gorgeous ornamental trees are named for their large but delicate leafage and visually striking spring blooms. At Twin Rivers, we enjoy pruning this one for upright growth or the typical cascading style well-known in Japanese gardens. They need protection from full sun and wind that can dry out the tips of their lacy leaves. They grow well in slightly moist fertile soil with added mulch. When mulching your trees, avoid heaping the mulch against the trunk and keep seedlings moist with appropriate watering.

Don’t be shy! Give Twin Rivers Tree Services a call.

As with all trees, maples need regular care and pruning to train for single or multiple trunks and periodical removal of dead, diseased or damaged limbs. When lot clearing, we can ensure your commercial or residential maple trees are retained, for their beauty and their value to our ecosystems.

For arborist services, call us in Kamloops, Sechelt/Gibsons and the Fraser Valley. We serve customers throughout Central and Southwestern BC and take pride in delivering professional arborist services that preserve and protect our urban forests.

Next Up: Sap to Syrup. All About Sugar Maple Trees