Bigleaf Maple

Bigleaf Maple flowers and samaras (winged seeds)

The Bigleaf Maple tree (Acer macrophyllum) is a large deciduous tree, and the largest of the three native Maples here in the lower mainland. It can grow to over 100 feet (35m) tall. Old Bigleaf Maples tend to have a lot of moss on them. They like dry to moist site often in a mixed forest, and are often found with Douglas-fir trees that also like a dry site. Their leaves are 5 lobed and are 6 – 12 inches (15-30cm) across. They have drooping clusters of greenish-yellow flowers that appear before the leaves emerge in early spring. The seeds are a pair of winged seeds called samaras about 1 to 2 1/2 inch long (3-6cm) in a V shape that twirl when they fall from the tree. This tree is too big for small gardens, but is a great habitat tree in neighbourhood parks or green spaces. It is good early spring plant for food for pollinators.

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