Meet the Maples: Norway Maple

A native of Europe, Norway Maple (Acer platanoides) trees have been planted throughout New England. Often confused with Sugar Maple, a simple test can aide in sorting out these similarly leaved trees: when removed from a branch, Norway Maple leaf stalks typically exude white latex.

Photo of Norway Maple latex

The leaves of Norway Maple emerge earlier in spring and are retained later into the fall than those of the native Sugar Maple.  Norway Maple leaves also tend to be wider with more prominent outer lobes.

Photo of Sugar Maple and Norway Maple leaves
Sugar (left) and Norway (right) Maple leaves

The flowers and fruit of these two trees are also different, but they aren't around as long as the leaves are for convenient comparison.  However, the bark provides a year-round way to tell these two apart.  Mature Norway Maples have bark with a criss-crossed pattern, similar to the native White Ash tree.

Photo of Norway Maple bark

In the next Meet the Maples post, I'll profile the very different looking Silver Maple (Acer saccharinum).

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