The Q&A Archives: Leaf Structure Of Red Sunset Maple

Question: How many lobes are there on the leaves of Red Sunset Maple?
The small tree I just bought seems to have 3-lobed leaves. Do they turn transform into 5-lobes when the leaves get bigger? I had wanted a maple with 5 lobes. Did I get the right one?

Answer: The Red Sunset's? leaves are shiny green above and pale green beneath, 3-5 lobed and 3-6" across. Species name of rubrum (meaning red) is everywhere in evidence: red flowers in dense clusters in late March to early April (before the leaves appear), red fruit (reddish two-winged samara), reddish stems and twigs, red buds, and, in the fall, orange-red foliage color. Quality of fall color on species plants can be quite variable from year to year. Red Sunset? is one of the best red maple cultivars available, with outstanding orange to red fall color.

As your tree matures it will produce larger, 5-lobed leaves, as well as some 3-lobed leaves.

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