The October glory maple is one of the most common and widespread trees of eastern North America. It ranges from the Lake of the Woods on the border between Ontario and Minnesota, east to Newfoundland, south to near Miami, Florida, and southwest to east Texas. Many of its features, especially its leaves, are quite variable in form. At maturity it often attains a height of around 50 ft. It is aptly named for its glorious deep scarlet foliage in fall. Due to its attractive fall foliage and pleasing form, it is often used as a shade tree for landscapes. It is used commercially on a small scale for maple syrup production as well as for its medium to high quality lumber.
The October glory maple is widely grown as an ornamental tree in parks and large gardens, except where soils are too alkaline or salty. In parts of the Pacific Northwest, it is one of the most commonly introduced trees. Its popularity in cultivation stems from its vigorous habit, its attractive and early red flowers, and most importantly, its flaming red fall foliage.
Seasonal information: At maturity, the october glory maple often attains a height of around 50 ft. It is aptly named for its glorious deep scarlet foliage in fall. Due to its attractive fall foliage and pleasing form, it is often used as a shade tree for landscapes.
Location: Tolerant of soggy soils, october glory maple grows nicely on any fertile soil that is not alkaline in pH. Once established, it tolerates droughts with little harm although infrequent, deep irrigation will help retain more foliage in extremely dry periods, especially in regions with hot summers. Locate the tree in a full sun exposure where it will experience at least six to eight hours of direct sunlight daily. Abundant light encourages a well-shaped branching structure and leafy canopy as well as more intense fall foliage coloring.
Planting instructions: Dig a hole three times the width of the root ball and as deep. Plant the root ball in the hole and backfill with enriched loose soil. Water thoroughly after the root ball has been established, and place a layer of thick protective mulching over the top soil to control for weeds, pests, and suckers.
Watering: The October glory maple will appreciate a minimum of one and a half inches of water per week, whether from rainfall or irrigation. Building a water ring around the trunk can aid in moisture retention.
Fertilization: Use a slow release fertilizer in a 10-10-10 formula twice per month.
Pests and Disease: Several leaf diseases caused by fungi may affect an october glory maple. It displays in the form of tan spots surrounded by purple and red borders. Tar spots also can damage the aesthetic appeal of a tree. These initially produce yellow spots before developing into black, tarlike spots about 1 inch in diameter. Insect pests like aphids, scales and borers can be a problem for any maple tree and the october glory maple is no exception. Borers may be controlled by ensuring that the tree is healthy; those insects primarily are attracted only to stressed, diseased or immature October glory maples.