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TREES & Plants

Amur maple

Once widely used in gardens and landscapes, Amur maple is now considered invasive and it is not recommended for planting.  One tree can produce more than 5,000 two-winged seeds that are widely spread by wind.  In open woods, Amur maple displaces native shrubs and understory trees.  In prairies and open fields, it can shade out native species of plants, disrupting the ecosystems that plants and animals depend on. 

Botanical name: 
Acer ginnala
All Common Names: 
Amur maple
Family (English): 
Soapberry (formerly Maple)
Family (Botanic): 
Sapindaceae (formerly Aceraceae)
Tree or Plant Type: 
  • Shrub
  • Tree
Foliage: 
  • Deciduous (foliage falls off)
Native Locale: 
  • Non-native
Hardiness Zones: 
  • Zone 3
  • Zone 4
  • Zone 5
  • Zone 6
  • Zone 7
  • Zone 8
Size Range: 
  • Small tree (15-25 feet)
  • Large shrub (more than 8 feet)
Shape or Form: 
  • Multi-stemmed
  • Rounded
  • Spreading
Time of Year: 
  • Early spring
More Information: 

Size and Form

15 to 20 feet high and wide
Usually multi-trunked  and round to broad spreading

Disease, pests, and problems

This tree is becoming a problem in the Midwest where it displaces native shrubs and understory trees. It is not recommended for planting.

One tree can produce more than 5,000 two-winged seeds that are widely spread by wind. In open woods, it displaces native shrubs and understory trees. In prairies and open fields, it can shade out native species.
Verticillium wilt (fungus) is a potential problem for maples

Bark color and texture

Gray brown, smooth on young branches;  slightly striped or fissured with age

Amur maple (Acer ginnala)Amur maple (Acer ginnala)photo: John Hagstrom

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture

Simple leaves in pairs (opposite); 2 to 4 inches long
Dark green leaves with three lobes and a toothed edge
Fall color is orange, red and yellow

Flower arrangement, shape, and size

Creamy white, fragrant flowers in small clusters

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions

Fruit are winged seeds in pairs (samaras)