Trees And Shrubs

Tartarian Maple Acer tatariciim

Aceraceae

The Tartarian maple is widespread in southeast Europe, extending northward to southern Slovakia and eastward as far as Iran. It is widely cultivated today as an ornamental in. the parks of western and central Europe, and is completely frost-resistant in this area. It branches close to the ground and has the shape of a large shrub 4 to 10 metres high. The twigs are slender and brownish, the buds small. The greenish white flowers appear at the end of May after the leaves unfurl. The samaras have red wings before maturation, but, when ripe, they turn entirely brown.

The Tartarian maple is very tolerant of dry situations, and is plentiful even in the Russian steppes. In parks, it is planted on dry slopes, and as tall green hedges in dry locations. It is also very attractive as a solitary specimen tree. The related Manchurian maple {Acer ginnala Maxim.), a native of the Far East, is frequently cultivated. It, too, has the shape of a shrub, but differs from the Tartarian maple in having distinctive thrce-lobed leaves which turn yellow or bright red in autumn.

Leaves: Palmate, opposite, ovate, 6—10 cm long, with two, slightly demarcated lobes, serrate margin and rounded base. Fruit: A double samara, the wings forming an acute angle and often overlapping, with an ovoid seed.

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