A tree with 🌳︎ broadleaves arranged opposite, blade division=🍁︎ simple, 3-lobed (4+5 very small), leaf surface=smooth, teeth irregular size, not a shrub, twigs red, branch tips do not curve upward.  Leaves and petiole are bright red in autumn.  Twigs are bright red in winter.  Usually grows in moist areas.

Also called ♒︎ water maple and swamp maple (although do not confuse with silver maple  Acer saccharinum which is also called those).  Part of maple  genus Acer and soapberry  family Sapindaceae.

Native to 🇨🇦 Canada and 🇺🇸 USA central and East.

Uses by native peoples
(Ethnobotany database)
  Often planted as a shade tree.  Some are tapped to make maple syrup.

Acer hosts caterpillars of 285 species
of butterflies and moths, in some areas.

Considered one of the soft maples, although its wood is nearly as hard as its cousins.

Flowers are small clusters of red, and appear very early in season—often appears before leaves!

Male trees score highly allergenic (7-8 out of 10) on the OPALS™ Ogren Plant Allergy Scale.  Female trees score least allergenic (1 out of 10).  But most trees have flowers of both genders.

Planting info (SW Michigan) (.pdf)   bloom dates (Illinois) (.pdf).

Learn more about red maple Acer rubrum

Discover Life Encyclopedia of Life Google Google images Michigan Flora MSUE tip sheet Missouri Botanical Garden USDA PLANTS db USFS Wikipedia