Red Maple's brilliant red, orange, or sometimes yellow leaves are usually 3-lobed and 6-13 cm (2.5-5") long; the lobes are often pointed rather than blunt. The leaves match those of Sugar Maple for fall brilliance, but since Red Maples are generally smaller trees and tend to be scattered in the forest rather than in pure stands, they rarely dominate the fall color pattern of a given area. With a range from Newfoundland to southern Florida, Red Maples have had to adapt to more different seasonal light and temperature cycles than any other eastern tree.
Other maples in the Appalachians are the well-known Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum), and the Striped Maple (Acer pensylvanicum) which is found in our higher elevations.
The hard, fine-grained white wood of maple is used for furniture, flooring, paneling, musical instruments, tool handles, cutting boards, butcher blocks, wooden bowls, and many other farm, home and industrial uses. With about 19,000,000 BTU's per cord (equivalent to 145 gallons of fuel oil), maple is an excellent wood for fuel.
compiled from "Fall Colors & Woodland Harvests" & "Fall Color Finder" by Laurel Hill Press
© 1999 NCNatural
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