From:Glastonbury, CT Region: Northeast Topic: Non-Natives Title: Failure to thrive of non-native Japanese maple Answered by: Barbara Medford
My 10 year old Japanese red maple leaves suddenly started to curl up and die at the end of summer last year. Only about a quarter of the tree leaved out this spring, branches are dead. Can I plant another in its spot? What could have happened?
Acer palmatum, Japanese Maple, is native to China and (of course) Japan. Since the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the use, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the areas in which they are being grown, we have no information on this plant in our Native Plant Database. Here is an About.com: Forestry article How to Manage and ID Japanese Maple, which can give you a lot of information to help you discover the problems. The fact that you kept it alive for 10 years indicates you were doing a good job, as it is not ordinarily a long-lived plant, and this USDA Plant Profile does not even show it as growing in Connecticut. Hartford County, in central Connecticut, is in USDA Hardiness Zone 6, and the Japanese maple is hardy from Zones 5b to 8, so your temperatures should not have been the problem. If you know others are growing this tree in your area, you might contact the University of Connecticut Cooperative Extension Office for Hartford County. If this is something that has been happening in your area, they are closer to home and can give you more help than we can.
More Non-Natives Questions
Native or non-native hibiscus for Kansas August 13, 2005 - I recently purchased a 10" Hibiscus flowering plant and would like to know how to care for it. How much water and sunlight does it need and how long I can expect it to live? It is a beautiful plant a... view the full question and answer
Controlling pumpkin vine in British Columbia July 15, 2008 - I have never grown pumpkins before but decided to try one plant this year. It seems to be taking over my small garden space. Can I prune it back? I only want one or two pumpkins for my grandchildre... view the full question and answer
Non-native Coconut palms and Christmas palms in Merritt Island, FL August 10, 2010 - Last winter the coconut and Christmas Palms all suffered. I have coconuts to plant, but can't get them to put forth a sprout, and eventually grow into a tree. I have put some in the ground half-way.... view the full question and answer
Problems with non-native Japanese privet from Glendale AZ December 26, 2012 - We have Japanese privet shrub and they seem to be suffering from a disease, need help. view the full question and answer
Information about non-native tung tree November 20, 2010 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I have a tree growing in my yard in North Austin which I can't identify. I have been told it is a 'tong' or 'tung' tree but can't find it in any reference books. It is de... view the full question and answer