Mountain maple (Acer spicatum)

Red maple leaves

Click on the images help you identify an Mountain maple.



A small tree reaching a height of up to 20', sometimes even 25' to 30', with a diameter of 6" to 8"; short trunk supports an irregular crown of small upright branches; often occurs in dense, shrubby clumps.


Thin, reddish-brown, smooth or slightly furrowed.


Simple, opposite on stem, length 2 1/2" to 4"; three-lobed or partially five-lobed, sometimes slightly heart-shaped at the base; gradually narrowed, pointed lobes are coarsely and sharply toothed; light green turning to deep red or orange in the autumn.

Fruit (seed)

Samara about 3/4" to 1" long occurring in double-winged, u-shaped pairs.


Northeastern and east-central Minnesota; shade-tolerant, slow-growing.

Wood uses

Light, soft, close-grained; thick, lighter-colored sapwood; occasionally cultivated as an ornamental.

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