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Sometimes called Scarlet Maple, Shoepeg Maple, or Swamp Maple, Acer rubrum — most commonly known as Red Maple — is an abundant, adaptable species, widely planted throughout North America and beyond. Red Maple grows in a vast natural range throughout the United States, Mexico, and north into both Western and Eastern Canada. It occupies a variety of diverse habitats, from bogs and bottomlands to cold mountain ridges, growing best in wetter areas.
A moderately fast grower, Red Maple usually grows to between 60 and 100 feet tall at maturity, with large, spreading canopies and showy flowers. Red twigs, branchlets, and buds give the Red Maple its name, as does the brilliant scarlet color of the tree's foliage. The crimson leaves are especially florid in colder regions. The largest Red Maple on record is over 180 feet tall with a crown spread of 120 feet. Red Maple is often among the first trees to color-up in fall and one of the first to blossom in spring. This species makes a beautiful, seasonally-entertaining tree for a diverse array of locations. Acer rubrum is highly soil-tolerant, can grow in sun or shade, and is especially well-suited for use as a street, shade, or ornamental tree.