The Q&A Archives: Emperor 1 Japanese Maple Protection

Question: A few months ago, I planted an Emperor 1 Japanese Maple in my backyard in a part shady, part sunny spot. I've noticed dry scorch marks on some of the leaves, indicating to me that it's getting too much sun. However, the newer growth underneath the topmost leaves is adding an interesting deep green into the mix of purple leaves. It doesn't mention this color in this tree's details so I was curious as to what attributes to this color change. The tree appears to have plenty of new growth. I'm just wondering if this color change is anything to be alarmed about. Thanks for your help.

Answer: Japanese maples need protection from hot afternoon sunshine or the leaf margins will look scorched. They prefer to grow in the filtered shade of larger trees, but full shade in the afternoon is acceptable, as well. Japanese maples provide all-year interest. Young spring growth is glowing red; summer leaves are soft green; fall foliage is scarlet, orange, or yellow. The color change you mention is perfectly normal for a Japanese maple. To lessen transplant shock, wait until this fall to move your tree to a more protected spot.

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