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Hedge maple (Not recommended)

Leaves of hedge maple.

Hedge maples have invasive traits that enable them to spread aggressively. While these trees have demonstrated invasive traits, there is insufficient supporting research to declare them so pervasive that they cannot be recommended for any planting sites. Review of risks should be undertaken before selecting these trees for planting sites. Hedge maple is a broad-rounded tree that is useful as a specimen or, in groups, as a hedge. It can tolerate part shade, especially when young, and prefers moist, well-drained soil. It is relatively salt-tolerant, so it can be used near sidewalks and driveways. The leaves turn greenish yellow in fall.

This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.


Botanical name:

Acer campestre

All common names:

hedge maple, field maple

Family (English):

Soapberry (formerly Maple)

Family (Botanic):

Sapindaceae (formerly Aceraceae)

Tree or Plant Type:

  • Tree


  • Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)

Native Locale:

  • Non-native

Size Range:

  • medium tree (25-40 feet)

Mature Height:

25-35 feet

Mature Width:

25-35 feet

Light Exposure:

  • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
  • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

Hardiness Zones:

  • Zone 4,
  • Zone 5 (Chicago),
  • Zone 6,
  • Zone 7

Soil Preference:

  • Alkaline soil,
  • Moist, well-drained soil


  • Dry sites,
  • Alkaline soil,
  • Road salt

Acid Soils:

  • Tolerant

Alkaline Soils:

  • Prefers

Salt Spray:

  • Tolerant

Soil Salt:

  • Intolerant

Drought Conditions:

  • Tolerant

Poor Drainage:

  • Intolerant

Planting Considerations:

  • Aggressive,
  • Commonly planted

Ornamental Interest:

  • Fall color

Flower Color & Fragrance:

  • Inconspicuous

Shape or Form:

  • Round

Growth Rate:

  • Moderate

Transplants Well:

  • Yes


  • Birds,
  • Insect pollinators,
  • Small mammals

More Information:

Tree & Plant Care

Avoid pruning in early spring as maples are 'bleeders' and will lose large amounts of sap.

Disease, pests, and problems

Verticillium wilt (fungus) is a potential problem for maples.

Disease, pest, and problem resistance

Tolerant of compaction, salt and air pollution.

Native geographic location and habitat

Native to Europe and Africa.

Bark color and texture 

Bark is dark gray to gray-black and is lightly ridged and furrowed.

Hedge maple (Acer campestre)
Hedge maple (Acer campestre)
photo: John Hagstrom

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture

Simple leaves in pairs (opposite); 2 to 4 inches long.
Leaves dark green and lobed.
Fall color is mild yellow to yellow-green.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size

Flowers green and in clusters; fairly inconspicuous.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions

Fruit are winged seeds in pairs (samaras); wings spread at a 180 degree angle from one another.

Cultivars and their differences

Metro Gold® hedge maple (Acer campestre 'Panacek'): This cultivar has a narrow, oval habit and yellow fall color.  Grows 35 feet high and 20 feet wide.

Royal Ruby hedge maple (Acer campestre 'Royal Ruby'):  New foliage emerges ruby red and then changes to dark green in summer.




Location of Acer campestre (Hedge maple (Not recommended)) at the Arboretum