Explore the Grounds

Maple Collection

Maples (Acer) are famous for their fall color and the Maple Collection at The Morton Arboretum is a fantastic place to see them

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Maples (Acer) are famous for their fall color—and the Maple Collection at The Morton Arboretum is a fantastic place to see the glowing yellow of the sugar maple, the vibrant yellow of the Miyabe maple, and the dramatic red of the Japanese maple.

Maples are a popular landscape tree. There are over 1,000 cultivars of Japanese maple alone! Every autumn, the woods on the East Side of the Arboretum are set ablaze with the glowing bright orange fall color of sugar maple (Acer saccharum), which steals the show at the Arboretum. Thousands of visitors delight in this experience each fall. Explore the entire maple collection and find many exceptionally beautiful specimens.

See the large Miyabe’s maple (A. miyabei), a superior specimen tree for its adaptability, upright growth habit, and wide crown. Also, look for the red peeling bark of the paper-barked maple (A. griseum), a native of China, and related species Manchurian maple (A. mandshurica). These species are highly prized for outstanding brilliant fall colors, attractive bark, and adaptability. Two successful Japanese maple cultivars are burgundy lace Japanese maple (Acer palmatum’Burgundy Lace’) and seven-lobed Japanese maple (A. palmatum var. heptalobum); these cultivars have performed exceptionally well for many years.

New species are continually acquired through plant explorations and added to the collection. Some of them include Manchurian striped maple (A. tegmentosum), located east of the trail in the northern section of the collection, and Korean maple (A. pseudosieboldianum). See the large specimen located southeast of the A. tegmentosum mentioned above.


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