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Silver maple

  • Native Plants,
  • Trees and Shrubs
Silver maple (Acer saccharinum)
Photo: Jardin botanique de Montréal (Robert Mineau)
Acer saccharinum.
  • Acer saccharinum.
  • Acer saccharinum.



Origin and description

Silver maples owe their name to the colour of their leaves, which are pale green above and silver grey below, turning yellow and sometimes red in fall. The leaves have palmate veins and five deeply notched lobes. The flowers appear before the leaves, with male and female flowers on the same tree, but different inflorescences. The winged fruit matures very early and is ready to germinate in early June. The bark forms long, thin, narrow flakes, free at both ends. The crown is irregular and open, with several large branches.

Silver maples grow from southern Quebec, along the St. Lawrence and Richelieu rivers, as far south as Florida. They grow next to rivers and on low-lying, moist sites. The sap is less sweet than that of sugar maple, and produces light syrup. The fruit and buds are edible.

Common name

Silver maple

Latin name (genus)

Acer saccharinum

English common name

French common name

Botanical family

  • Aceraceae

Growing conditions

Fast growing. Pollution tolerant.

Shallow root system, with powerful, well-developed roots. Silver maples drink a lot of water.


Pests and diseases
Physiological disorders

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