Acer leucoderme Small
Chalk Maple, Whitebark Maple
Aceraceae (Maple Family)
Synonym(s): Acer nigrum var. leucoderme, Acer saccharum ssp. leucoderme, Acer saccharum var. leucoderme, Saccharodendron leucoderme
USDA Symbol: ACLE
A southern variation of sugar maple, chalk maple grows to 25 ft. and usually has 2-3 trunks. Its attractive, mature bark is chalky-surfaced. The significant landscape feature of this tree is its brilliant fall foliage. The leaves are smaller than those of Northern sugar maple (Acer saccharum), but the colors are just as bright. Small tree with rounded crown of slender branches and with distinctly whitish bark. Both the common name and the scientific name, meaning "white skin," describe the smooth bark.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Fruit Type: Samara
Size Notes: Usually up to about 30 feet tall, can be taller.
Fruit: Two joined samaras.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Apr , May
DistributionUSA: AL , AR , DC , FL , GA , LA , MS , NC , OK , SC , TN , TX
Native Distribution: NC to n. FL, w. to e. OK & TX
Native Habitat: Rocky woods; river bluffs; ravines
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Well-drained, rocky soils, Sandy, Sandy Loam.
Conditions Comments: Chalk maple displays good dry-soil tolerance, although it needs moisture if grown in brighter sites.
BenefitUse Ornamental: This rare tree is sometimes planted as a shade tree in the Southeast. Fall conspicuous, Understory tree.
Interesting Foliage: yes
PropagationPropagation Material: Seeds
Seed Collection: As soon as samaras turn yellowish or reddish brown and the seeds inside are firm, filled out, and dark brown. Best to gather from the tree as seeds that have already dropped lose viability quickly and are easily infested. Seed is usually not extracted from the samara. Keep in cold, moist storage.
Seed Treatment: Cold stratification in moist sand or peat/perlite mixture for 2-3 months.
Commercially Avail: yes
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Texas Discovery Gardens - Dallas, TX
Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE
BibliographyBibref 298 - Field Guide to Texas Trees (1999) Simpson, B.J.
Bibref 318 - Native Texas Plants: Landscaping Region by Region (2002) Wasowski, S. & A. Wasowski
Search More Titles in Bibliography
Web ReferenceWebref 57 - Atlas of Florida Plants (2020) Institute for Systematic Botany
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Acer leucoderme in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Acer leucoderme in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Acer leucoderme
MetadataRecord Modified: 2023-04-26
Research By: TWC Staff