Sugar Maple, Red Maple, Hedge Maple, Norway Maple, Japanese Maple

There are 5 species of maple in the Yard. The two most prominent species are the sugar maple and the red maple. The sugar maple is not very tolerant of soil compaction and road salt, so ones planted in high traffic areas usually have not done well. There are some in the Old Yard, but the largest speicmens are along the fence near Quincy Gate.

Sugar maple near Quincy Gate.

Sugar Maples are some of the earliest trees to change color in the yard. This picture was taken October 11, 2004.

The red maples in the Yard are mainly located in Tercentenary Theatre, and they were all planted in the landscaping 10 years ago. The reason? To form a crimson ring each fall with its foliage. The red maples ring the Theatre around the honeylocusts. This will lead to a pretty contrast between the yellow honeylocusts and the crimson red maples each fall.

The red maple has bright red flowers in early spring.

The hedge maple is a native of England. Most of the hedge maples in the Yard are along the perimiter next to the fence, but this one made its way into the center of the Yard next to Thayer Hall.

The hedge maple, also known as the English field maple

Field maple leaves.

Some branches on the hedge maple form corky wings, but not all of them.

The Norway maple is one of the nost ubiquitous urban trees in the eastern part of the US. Perhaps for this reason it was never planted in any prominent areas of the Yard. Its bark is ridged very similarly to the white ash. It has the thickest twigs and largest buds of all the maples in the Yard.

This Norway maple is well out of sight behind Holworthy Hall.

The final maple is one that is extremely hidden from plain view in the Yard. The only Japanese maple in the Yard is in the depressed courtyard inside Pusey Library. The Japanese maple is known for having deep red leaves.

This Japanese maple is very easy to miss. Look for the fenced off area in front of Lamont Library.

Virginia Tech Dendrology info - sugar maple, red maple, hedge maple, Norway maple, Japanese maple


Created by Ryan Lynch

Last updated May 28, 2007