En Español

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - November 06, 2011

From: Westchester, IL
Region: Midwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Is a Brandywine Maple messy from Westchester IL
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Brandywine Maple: Does this tree produce sap, seeds or flower? As a home owner I can't afford more maintenance with clogged gutters or a sap covered car. Thank you.

ANSWER:

While Acer rubrum (Red maple) is native to North America and to Illinois, 'Brandywine' has been developed as seen in this excerpt from Maple-tree.com:

"Development: 'Brandywine' resulted from a 1982 cross of Acer rubrum 'October Glory' and A. rubrum ' Autumn Flame' by A. M. Townsend as part of a research project examining the inheritance of fall color and leafhopper resistance, and an effort to improve existing cultivars of red maple. Released December, 1994. Significance: 'Brandywine' has a brilliant red-purple autumn color. It produces only male flowers; thus, no fruit or nuisance seedlings. It has a significant level of tolerance to potato leafhopper, better than or comparable to many commercially available red maple cultivars.

Apparently, this tree produces only male flowers, and therefore no fruit or nuisance seedlings. It does, however, produce a lot of leaves in the Fall. It would be nearly impossible to find any tree that would produce no waste products of one kind or another to clog your gutters. As for the sap that rises in the trees; in cold climates, these trees store starch in their trunks and roots before the winter-the starch is then converted to sugar that rises in the sap in the spring.

So, if you don't want litter or sap on your car, better not plant a maple over your car, and we really don't know what to suggest about the gutters. You can make decisions about location of plants and hardscape, but it is well nigh impossible to change the nature of a plant.


 

 

From the Image Gallery


Red maple
Acer rubrum

More Trees Questions

Young pecan trees with leaf and branch problems from Gatesville TX
November 18, 2013 - I have a young pecan tree that had very rapidly browning Leaves. They became brittle and so did the branches with affected leaves. The branches soon fell off. We treated with fungicide during that pro...
view the full question and answer

Need recommendations for privacy screen in Richmond, VA
February 27, 2013 - Hello, I read through the previous posts on privacy screen plantings in the Mid Atlantic region. There was a lot of great information, but I has a specific question that was not answered. I would li...
view the full question and answer

Mediterranean Pines indigenous to Verde Valley AZ
January 01, 2012 - Are the tall, thin Mediterranean/Pencil Pines growing in the Verde Valley in Arizona indigenous to the area? They are so plentiful, but are not identified as an indigenous evergreen. If not, how did...
view the full question and answer

Living fence of native plants in Central Texas
December 14, 2008 - I would like to plant a living fence around my property in central Texas. What trees/plants will survive the Texas weather best without taking years to provide visual shield?
view the full question and answer

Failure to thrive of Texas Mountain Laurel in Austin
May 02, 2010 - I have an adult (over 25 years?, 20 feet tall?) Mountain Laurel next to my house in Austin. The winter of 2009/10 it lost most of its leaves. It did bloom and leaf out this Spring--not vigorous espec...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center