Friday, May 8, 2009

Acer negundo seedling

Warning: this is an invasive species in southern Ontario.

[Photo: Acer negundo seedling.]Acer negundo, known in English as "Manitoba maple", "box elder", "boxelder maple", or "maple ash", and in French as érable du Manitoba or érable negundo, is a deciduous tree native to eastern and central United states and southern Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

I like finding volunteer tree seedlings in the yard and was disappointed to find out that this was Manitoba maple, which the Invasive Exotic Species Ranking for Southern Ontario (PDF) ranks as a category 1 invasive, "Aggressive invasive exotic species that can dominate a site to exclude all other species and remain dominant on the site indefinitely." At least this one is small enough to be removed fairly easily (I'm assuming).


  1. Yep. Good old bad old Manitoba maple. You can recognize it early by its long, narrow primary leaves -- and, of course, the compound leaves that follow. I take great pleasure in nipping it in the (almost) bud.

  2. Sorry, I should add that the "long, narrow" primary leaves are narrower than the other pest, the Norway maple (Acer platanoides). However, there's an acer negundo in cultivation -- very popular in Britain for its variegated pink, white and green colouration. It's called 'Flamingo' and the Brits tend to keep it pruned back as a shrub for the best foliage colour.


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