Tag Archives: identifying Ozark plants

Blazing Maple Colors

Many tree leaves turned brown and are busy falling. Maples are defying them by turning their usual blazing maple colors.

In looking through my “Flora of Missouri” volume I found there are quite a few different kinds of maple trees. Around here there are silver, sugar and red that I know of. That made me think.

Lots of people have maples in their yards in town. Fall is always lovely because of the blazing maple colors. These range from a simple lemon yellow to orange yellow to orange salmon to deep red.

The different kinds of maples look a lot alike to me most of the year. I know the shapes vary some, the barks vary and the leaves have differences. I’ve never really studied them, but should start again in the spring.

In truth I should start now. The different blazing maple colors are a good place to do just that. The colors are the key.

subdued sugar maple color
When we moved to this house, the sugar maple was a spindly thing. Large oaks shaded it. The oaks are gone now, one fell over and the other one died. The sugar maple has gained in size and is a tower of color in the fall.

Someone long ago planted a sugar maple tree in our front yard. It is finally getting big. It turns an orange tinged yellow. In cloudy light the color glows.

The silver maples growing in the area turn lemon yellow. It looks almost like the leaves are painted as the color is so true yellow.

I don’t know which maples turn that gorgeous shade of orange salmon. The trees are easy to spot as they seem to be on fire as the color is so vivid. I need to note which trees these are as they must be a different kind of maple.

blazing maple colors
One kind of maple turns this gorgeous color in the fall. There are several trees in town to admire. In the sun the trees are ablaze. In cloudy weather the trees smolder.

The deep red ones might be red maples. It seems logical to call them red maples, if they turn red in the fall. There aren’t as many of these around.

Asking the home owners which kind of maple grows in their yard won’t work. The trees are old and the houses have had several owners. I will have to get pictures of the buds and bark this winter. Flowers and leaves will come next spring. Perhaps next year I will know the kind of tree for each of the blazing maple colors.

See more photographs of Ozark seasons in “My Ozark Home.”