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Montpellier maple

Acer monspessulanum (Familie Seifenbaumgewächse, Sapindaceae)

Distribution: Mediterranean area to western Asia; few small and isolated occurrences in warm locations (wine-growing climate!) of southern Central Europe, such as in the Middle Rhine, Moselle and Nahe valleys, and in Lower Franconia on the Franconian Saale near Hammelburg.

Appearance: Small tree, up to 10 m tall; opposite, long-stalked, 4-8 cm wide leaves with three ovate, entire lobes (unlike the similar field maple!). The split fruit typical of maples with two globular nutlets, the two fruit wings are at an acute angle to each other.

Castle maple is a native but widely unknown maple species that is well adapted to warm dry conditions due to its mainly sub-Mediterranean distribution. Therefore, this small tree is ideal for plantings along streets, in squares or in parks. Acer monspessulanum, which also grows well in shady locations, is attractive in spring and summer because of its dense, dark green foliage, and in autumn because of its magnificent, bright yellow-orange to red fall color.

rote Herbstfärbung des französischen Ahorns

Herbstfärbung (Foto: G. Aas)

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