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Autumn Blaze Autumn


SCIENTIFIC NAME: Acer x freemanii
FAMILY: Aceraceae

This tree in Colorado Autumn Blaze maple is a hybrid maple developed from crossing the silver maple (Acer saccharinum) with the red maple (Acer rubrum). The silver maple and red maple both have questionable merits as reliable shade trees in our State, however, the Autumn Blaze maple has been engineered to provide the excellent qualities of both its parents; fast growth rate, stronger wood, some drought resistance, and excellent, reliable red fall color.

Hardiness Zones 3 to 9. Has shown good tolerance of temperature extremes here in Colorado, occasionally will show some tip die-back.

Growth rate Moderate to fast growing.

Foliage Deeply 5-lobed resembling those of silver maple, rich green with excellent orange-red fall color that persists later than other maples.

Flowers Insignificant.

Bark Smooth, whitish when young, becoming furrowed with dark ridges as it ages.

Insects and diseases None significant at this time.

Landscape value The tree can grow to 50 feet in height and 45 feet in width, so be sure to give the tree plenty of above and below-ground space to grow. Can work well as a street tree. Red Fall color has been spectacular on this maple variety and has withstood some heavy snow loads that have decimated silver maple populations.

Information sources
Michael Dirr, Manual of Woody Landscape Plants (University of Georgia, 1998)