Acer rubrum var. trilobum
Acer rubrum L. var. trilobum Torr. & A. Gray ex K. Koch
Trident Maple, Trident Red Maple
Aceraceae (Maple Family)
Synonym(s): Acer carolinianum, Acer rubrum var. tridens, Rufacer carolinianum
USDA Symbol: ACRUT
Acer rubrum var. trilobum shares the general characteristics of its species but always has hairy-on-the-underside 3-lobed leaves, the lower 2 lobes of which are somewhat compressed. Its leaves are also more likely to turn yellow in the fall than those of varieties rubrum and drummondii, though red is still common. It prefers drier sites than variety drummondii.
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Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Root Type: Fibrous
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Leaf Arrangement: Opposite
Leaf Complexity: Palmate
Leaf Pubescence: Hirsute
Leaf Margin: Serrate
Breeding System: Flowers Unisexual , Dioecious
Fruit Type: Samara
Size Notes: Up to about 70 feet tall.
Leaf: Green, turning red or yellow in fall. This variety is more likely to have yellow autumn foliage than the other Acer rubrum varieties.
Autumn Foliage: yes
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Red
Bloom Time: May
Bloom Notes: Male blooms are showiest
DistributionUSA: AL , AR , CT , DE , FL , GA , IL , IN , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MO , MS , NC , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OK , PA , RI , SC , TN , TX , VA , VT , WV
Canada: NB , NS
Native Distribution: Eastern Canada south to Florida, west to east Texas and Oklahoma
Native Habitat: Woodland. Often found in drier sites than other Acer rubrum varieties.
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8) , Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
Drought Tolerance: Medium
Cold Tolerant: yes
Heat Tolerant: yes
BenefitUse Ornamental: Valued for its brilliant fall color, red male flowers in spring, and red samaras in spring on female trees
Use Wildlife: Attracts a variety of birds and mammals to its fruits and leaves. Home to a bevy of insects, including several sphinx moth species.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Larval Host: For several sphinx moth species.
Deer Resistant: No
Herbarium Specimen(s)NPSOT 0275 Collected June 1, 1993 in Bexar County by Harry Cliffe
BibliographyBibref 1255 - Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants (2009) Tallamy, Douglas W.
Bibref 481 - How to Grow Native Plants of Texas and the Southwest: Revised and Updated Edition (2001) Nokes, J.
Bibref 293 - Manual of the Vascular Plants of Texas (1979) Correll, D. S. & M. C. Johnston
Bibref 318 - Native Texas Plants: Landscaping Region by Region (2002) Wasowski, S. & A. Wasowski
Bibref 281 - Shinners & Mahler's Illustrated Flora of North Central Texas (1999) Diggs, G. M.; B. L. Lipscomb; B. O'Kennon; W. F...
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Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Acer rubrum var. trilobum in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Acer rubrum var. trilobum in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Acer rubrum var. trilobum
MetadataRecord Modified: 2009-11-26
Research By: TWC Staff, GDG