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Acer argutum Maxim.

Modern name

Acer argutum Maxim. ex Miq.

A small, deciduous, dioecious tree, with erect branches; young branchlets covered with a fine down. Leaves 2 to 4 in. long, as much wide, five-lobed, produced on long, slender stalks, the lobes ovate, long-pointed, with margins prettily double-toothed; lower surface downy, especially on the whitish veins. Male flowers borne in clusters of racemes, before the leaves; female flowers on racemes borne singly in the axils of leafy shoots; they are greenish yellow and the racemes downy. Fruits on slender stalks to about 34 in. long, 14 in. wide, spreading horizontally.

Native of the mountain woods of Japan; introduced to England in 1881, for Messrs Veitch, by Maries. It is a maple of elegant appearance, with pale green leaves as prettily lobed and toothed as those of A. palmatum. The stalk of the inflorescence and that of the individual flower lengthens considerably as the fruits develop. The branches acquire a purplish-brown shade in winter. It grows best in a cool, moist situation, shielded from strong sun, which scorches the leaf-margins. There is a good example of this maple, about 30 ft high, at the Winkworth Arboretum, Godalming, Surrey.



Other species in the genus