Plant Information

Plant Information

Sugar Maple*

Sugar maple (Acer saccharum)

Planting Site:

Its five-lobed leaves grow densely on an upright oval tree that can reach a height of 70 feet. Tiny yellowish-green flowers appear in spring before the leaves emerge. The tree's winged fruit, or samara, matures in the fall. Autumn color is highly variable, ranging from yellow or orange to red, but is always outstanding. Sugar maple, the main source of maple syrup, enlivens landscapes across the cooler regions of eastern North America with its bright fall colors ranging from yellow to red. These slow-growing, large-maturing trees, develop a dense, round canopy but are not very tolerant of compacted soils. Instead, use in park-like settings and plant in moist, rich soil.

Illinois native species.

Acer saccharumAcer saccharumAcer saccharum


Street: Appropriate for restricted size planting sites; recommended by the City of Chicago Urban Tree Planting List
Park/Residential: Appropriate for landscaped planting sites including public parks, residential property, golf courses, cemeteries, etc.
Legacy: For plantings with an expected life span of more than 60 years; retained 50 percent or more climate suitability in models for the decade 2080
N/R +35 yrs: Not recommended for plantings with an expected life span of more than 35 years