Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum 'Shishigashira')

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Japanese Maple
Give a thumbs up Maple

Also sold as:
'Mejishi'
'Cristatum'
'Minus'
'Ribescifolium'
'Ribesifolium'

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Tree
Life cycle: Perennial
Water Preferences: Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Leaves: Good fall color
Deciduous

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Comments:
Posted by jathton (Oklahoma City, OK) on Jun 24, 2020 3:21 PM

The International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants divides Japanese maple cultivars with valid names into 7 groups. Acer palmatum 'Shishigashira' appears in Group 6: Dwarf, Bonsai, and Penjing.
Normally the trees in this group do not exceed 1 meter in height, but 'Shishigashira' is an exception. J.D. Vertrees was aware of old 3 meter specimens… and a nursery here in Oklahoma City has a 6-7 foot specimen growing on the east side of their offices. I'll get photos of it and post them.
Vertrees goes on to say, "Size of the plant can be easily controlled by the amount of fertility available… the plant will stay quite short and dense if not over-fertilized. In a very fertile location the tree can reach a large size in a few years."
Van Gelderen, de Jong and Oterdoom describe it as having the, "most interesting, heavily curled leaves, 5-lobed, and dark green." Further on they say, "The autumn colors appear very late, often 3-4 weeks later than in other cultivars. The leaves turn a peculiar purple-red with orange-red patterns."
I'm pretty excited about this tree because one of our big box stores is having a HUGE clear-out-the-inventory sale… and I managed to obtain a Monrovia grown 2 gallon of it for twenty bucks. Nothing to complain about there.

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