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Mountain Maple




=Habitat and Range.=--In damp forests, rocky highland woods, along the

sides of mountain brooks at altitudes of 500-1000 feet.



From Nova Scotia and Newfoundland to Saskatchewan.



Maine,--common, especially northward in the forests; New Hampshire and

Vermont,--common; Massachusetts,--rather common in western and central

sections, occasional eastward; Rhode Island,--occasional northward;

Connecticut,--occasional in northern and central sections; reported as

far south as North Branford (New Haven county).



Along mountain ranges to Georgia.



=Habit.=--Mostly a shrub, but occasionally attaining a height of 25

feet, with a diameter, near the ground, of 6-8 inches; characterized by

a short, straight trunk and slender branches; bright green foliage

turning a rich red in autumn, and long-stemmed, erect racemes of

delicate flowers, drooping at length beneath the weight of the maturing

keys.



=Bark.=--Bark of trunk thin, smoothish, grayish-brown; primary branches

gray; branchlets reddish-brown streaked with green, retaining in the

second year traces of pubescence; season's shoots yellowish-green,

reddish on the upper side when exposed to the sun, minutely pubescent.



=Winter Buds and Leaves.=--Buds small, flattish, acute, slightly

divergent from the stem. Leaves simple, opposite, 4-5 inches long,

two-thirds as wide, pubescent on both sides when unfolding, at length

glabrous on the upper surface, 3-lobed above the center, often with two

small additional lobes at the base, coarsely or finely serrate, lobes

acuminate; base more or less heart-shaped; veining 3-5-nerved,

prominent, especially on the lower side, furrowed above; leafstalks

long, enlarged at the base.



=Inflorescence.=--June. Appearing after the expansion of the leaves, in

long-stemmed, terminal, more or less panicled, erect or slightly

drooping racemes; flowers small and numerous, both kinds in the same

raceme, the fertile near the base; all upon very slender pedicels; lobes

of calyx 5, greenish, downy, about half as long as the alternating

linear petals; stamens usually 8, in the sterile flower nearly as long

as the petals, in the fertile much shorter; pistil rudimentary, hairy in

the sterile flower; in the fertile the ovary is surmounted by an erect

style with short-lobed stigma.



=Fruit.=--In long racemes, drooping or pendent; the keys, which are

smaller than those of any other American maple, set on hair-like

pedicels, and at a wide but not constant angle; at length reddish, with

a small cavity upon one side.



=Horticultural Value.=--Hardy in cultivation throughout New England;

prefers moist, well-drained, gravelly loam in partial shade, but grows

well in any good soil; easily transplanted, but recovers its vigor

rather slowly; foliage free from disease.



Seldom grown in nurseries, but readily obtainable from northern

collectors of native plants.






1. Winter buds.

2. Flowering branch.

3. Sterile flower.

4. Abortive ovary in sterile flower.

5. Fertile flower with part of the perianth and stamens removed.

6. Fruiting branch.





=Acer Pennsylvanicum, L.=






Next: Striped Maple Moosewood Whistlewood

Previous: Black Maple



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