There are dozens of maple tree species and some of them are very well known such as the sugar maple. Maples are trees or shrubs in the genus Acer. Some of the most popular species of maples in the United States are the sugar maple, red maple, silver maple, Japanese maple, and the black maples. There are multitudes of cultivars that have been developed from these tree species. Maple trees are valued for their shade, wood, sap, and landscape qualities. Most maple species are fast growing and will provide shade much faster than a slower growing species such as the oak family. Most maple trees are deciduous except for some Asian species that are evergreen.
One of the maple trees most enduring qualities is their fall colors. Reds, oranges, yellows, and bronzes burst out in the fall creating wonderful landscape views. Part of the fall beauty of the New England states can be attributed to the majestic maple trees. The distinctive fruit of the maple tree are very recognizable. The seeds are winged and they may be labeled as “whirlybirds” or helicopters. The seeds acquired the names from the floating action of the winged seeds as they float to the ground. Many maple tree cultivars are male maple trees so they are seedless. Maple trees are planted as ornamental trees by homeowners, businesses and municipalities. Many smaller maples such as the Japanese maple are popular as specimen trees.