The name Japanese Maple is generally given to all those trees that originate from Japan and fall within the Acer cultivars of Palmatum and Japonicum.
We’re highlighting these trees in this post because right now at the end of September, we have been lucky enough to see one of the finest displays of Japanese Maples in autumn at our plant nursery in North London. We have a very large collection of Japanese Acers and we specialise in mature specimens. The weather this year has been such, that we have the most incredible variations in colour of foliage, from golden yellow, to sumptuous bronze and the most vivid crimson.
All of these photographs were taken at our London plant centre in the past week!
We’ve selected some of the most glorious specimens with a short synopsis of each variety and the tree’s preferred growing conditions.
We have five different sizes of this wonderful tree, from just 1metre in height to a mature specimen tree of 6 metres tall – these beautiful specimens will add real majesty to your garden, with interest throughout the seasons. Acer Palmatum prefers partial shade in a sheltered spot – these originally grew in woodlands beneath the canopy of larger trees.
Acer Palmatum Dissectum Garnet Specimen Tree
This particular cultivar has a range of different tree shapes – bushy, umbrella shaped with a clear stem, feathered with bonsai type twisted stems – a fabulous ornamental tree that does well in the shade in a neutral to slightly acidic soil type. A specimen tree that works extremely well as a focal point.
Acer Palmatum Ukigumo
This rare and beautiful variety of Palmatum is also known as Ukigumo Nishiki or the Floating Clouds tree, the pale variegated leaves are such a subtle colour with lovely pastel shades. Ukigumo is very slow growing tree and this is a mature specimen at 2.5 – 3 metres tall. The well defined, palmate leaves are beautifully formed with slightly wrinkled edges, with spotted and delicately toned variations, which undergo a transformation in autumn, with the palest pink tips to the light green leaves.
Acer Palmatum Shirasawanum Aureum
Also known as the Golden Full Moon or Golden Leaf Maple or the Golden Shirasawa Maple tree. A stunning variety with the brightest green leaves throughout the Spring and early summer, it also produces very unusual red flowers that hang from the branches in summer – as you can see the leaf colour of these Japanese Maples in Autumn is simply marvellous. Not surprisingly this cultivar has been given the RHS Award of Garden Merit – very hardy, it will grow well in most UK gardens, but does need to be in a sheltered spot away from cold winds.
Acer Palmatum Bloodgood
With red leaves throughout the year, it’s no wonder, this variety is one of our most popular, the leaves in Spring are a bronze-red, becoming darker as the season progresses until Autumn when they turn the most vibrant shade of crimson. Acer Palmatum Bloodgood will eventually grow to 5 metres tall, even so our mature specimens are already 3.2 metres high. An imposing tree that brings colour throughout the year. Bloodgood is hardy but prefers partial shade, it would naturally grow under the woodland canopy. Another Acer that has the RHS Award of Garden Merit.
Acer Palmatum Sango Kaku
This gorgeous Japanese Maple is also sometimes known as Senkaki and more commonly as Coral Bark Maple, a truly beautiful tree which will achieve 5 metres in height at maturity. It has the most unusual foliage and stem colouration. The leaves start life in Spring as a vivid green which then soften to a lovely golden yellow and eventually become bright yellow and bronze in Autumn on red stems – when the leaves fall the bright red stems bring some welcome colour into the garden during the winter months. Sango Kaku prefers to be grown in full sun.
We specialise in trees and plants for Japanese Gardens and our expert team at Paramount Plants are on-hand if you need any advice, especially if you’re not sure which variety is right for your space – please get in touch we’re only too happy to help you. We welcome visitors to our plant centre in North London, alternatively, why not visit our webshop, our entire range is there to view and is available to buy online for UK wide delivery.
Paramount Plants & Gardens Ltd
131 Theobalds Park Road
London EN2 9BH
Tel: +44 (0)20 8367 8809