|Coleman Sugar Maple / Family Aceraceae |
A compact variety of sugar maple, 'Coleman' grows to 60' Spread: 40-50' / upright spreading crown / Growth Rate: Slow / Zone: 4-8
Acer saccharum 'Coleman'
In my humble opinion, the Sugar Maple is the king of showy autumn foliage; its brilliant yellow to orange-red foliage simply screams, especially in direct sunlight. Sometimes called hard maple or rock maple, this is one of the largest and most important of our North American hardwoods. Sugar Maple grows on approximately 31 million acres (about 9%) of the hardwood forests in Midwest and northeast North America. The greatest commercial saw timber volumes are presently harvested in Michigan, New York, Maine, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. In most regions, both the saw timber and growing stock volumes are increasing, with increased production of saw logs, pulpwood, and more recently, firewood.
The fruit of the sugar maple, called a samara, is a double-winged, papery seed-bearing fruit, commonly called a "helicopter" or "whirlybird." The aerodynamic properties allow the seeds to be dispersed, in a fresh breeze, more than 100 meters (330 feet) from the parent tree. A mature sugar maple can produce between 3,000 and 9,000 pounds of seeds each season .
Mature Coleman Sugar Maple is 60 years old 
The sugar maple tree is the principal source of maple sugar. Trees are tapped early in the spring for the first flow of sap, which usually has the highest sugar content. The sap is collected and boiled or evaporated to a syrup. Further concentration by evaporation produces the maple sugar. Sugar maple sap averages about 2.5 percent sugar; about 129 liters (34 gal) of sap to make 3.8 liters (1 gal) of syrup or 3.6 kg (8 lb) of sugar.
Sugar maple is rated as very tolerant of shade, exceeded among hardwoods only by a few smaller, shorter lived species. In large trees, only American beech (Fagus grandifolia) equals it in tolerance under forest conditions. Except for bud losses, sugar maple is not highly susceptible to insect injury and serious outbreaks are not common. The most common insects to attack sugar maple are defoliators and these include the gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar), forest tent caterpillar, linden looper, striped mapleworm, maple leaf-cutter, and saddled prominent moth .
1. Coleman Sugar Maple, Morton Arboretum acc. 308-50-6, photos by Bruce Marlin
2. Richard Godman, Harry Yawney, and Carl Tubbs, USDA Forest Service Silvics Manual, 'Sugar Maple'
3. North American Insects & Spiders, 'Acorn Weevil, Curculio sp.'
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Family Aceraceae - Maples
The Maples are some of our most familiar and beloved trees. Most are native to the far east: China, Japan, Korea, Manchuria. Maples produce a distinctive winged fruit called a samara, also commonly known as helicopters or whirlybirds.
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