Florida maple
Acer floridanum
(A. barbatum)
  • ALTERNATE COMMON NAME: southern sugar maple
  • LEAVES:: opposite, simple, deciduous, 1.5-3” long, with (3-) 5 palmate lobes; lobe tips acute, sinuses rounded; margins entire or wavy; leaves pubescent beneath.
  • FLOWER: dioecious, occasionally perfect flowers; small (1/8”) bell-shaped, in drooping clusters; early spring
  • FRUIT: double samara, 3/4-1", wings orange-brown, seed-bearing portions green, maturing in midsummer.
  • TWIGS: glabrous, initially green, maturing to reddish brown.
  • BARK: platy with shallow furrows on older trees.
  • FORM: medium-sized tree, 40-60' up to 2' diameter; slow growing understory species
  • HABITAT: well-drained but moist soils of stream terraces and bluffs, often growing on calcareous substrates.
  • RANGE [Map]: eastern Oklahoma and Texas east to North Carolina and Virginia.
  • USES: a “hard maple”, harvested when obtaining commercial size and can be used for furniture, flooring and shoe lasts; occasionally used as an ornamental; maple seed, in general, is used by song and game birds depending upon seed maturity; small mammals use browse, bark, buds; important squirrel food; good deer browse.
  • Best Recognition Features:
    1. understory or midstory tree with opposite leaves and branching.
    2. leaves palmately lobed usually with 5 lobes, lobe margins entire, sinuses U-shaped.
    3. double samara with brownish-orange wings and green seed-bearing portions, maturing in midsummer.

    NOTE: considered to be a subspecies of sugar maple (Acer saccharum), but it is a smaller tree with smaller leaves and its range has limited overlap with sugar maple