Acer palmaltum, Japanese maple

A compact, small tree in lowland areas like Melbourne although it will grow taller in cooler, montane areas of the tablelands.

Uses and features:

  • a small feature tree to 7m suitable for city gardens
  • will tolerate part or dappled shade, and the filigree varieties full shade
  • withstands frosts and wind well
  • will tolerate hot and dry conditions if placed facing East or has protection from afternoon sun (600mm rainfall)
  • Shade the roots and mulch well to develop heat resistance
  • leaves 7-10cm across with 5-9 lobes
  • excellent autumn colours
  • bark green to purple
  • seeds are winged and are viable for only a few months
  • fast to medium growth

Japanese maples grow best in free draining soils and don’t require heavy fertilisation.


Tree shape

Upright, boadly conical to dome shaped

Mature size

Small 4-8m

Growth rate



Autumn leaf colour, ornamental, garden specimen

Soil type

Tolerate most soils types


Moist to moderately dry soils




East Asia