Acer griseum (*)
Acer griseum (Franch.) Pax
H. G. A. Engler, Pflanzenr. IV. 163(Heft 8):30. 1902
Acer griseum (Paperbark Maple; simplified Chinese: 血皮枫; traditional Chinese: 血皮楓; pinyin: xuè pí fēng) is a species of maple native to central China, in the provinces of Gansu, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Shaanxi, Shanxi, and Sichuan, at altitudes of 1,500–2,000 m.
It is a small to medium-sized deciduous tree, reaching 6-9 m (20-30 ft) tall, 5-6 m (15-25 ft) wide, with a trunk up to 70 cm (2 ft) in diameter. The bark is smooth, shiny orange-red, peeling in thin, papery layers; it may become fissured in old trees. The shoots are densely downy at first, this wearing off by the second or third year and the bark exfoliating by the third or fourth year. The leaves are compound, with a 2–4 cm petiole with three leaflets, each 3-10 cm long and 2-6 cm broad, dark green above, bright glaucous blue-green beneath, with several blunt teeth on the margins. The flowers are androdioecious, produced in small corymbs in spring, the fruit being a paired samara with two winged seeds about 1 cm long with a 3 cm wing.
Paperbark Maple is widely grown as an ornamental plant in temperate regions. It is admired for its decorative exfoliating bark, translucent pieces of which often stay attached to the branches until worn away. It also has spectacular autumn foliage which can include red, orange and pink tones.
It was introduced to cultivation in Europe in 1901 by Ernest Henry Wilson for the Veitch Nurseries, and to North America shortly after.
Recent attempts have been made to acquire new seed stock from wild populations in China because it is believed that the current gene pool of cultivated specimens is very small. Propagation of Acer griseum is somewhat difficult as seeds have the same parthenocarpic tendencies as those of Acer maximowiczianum.
1. ^ Stevens, P. F. (2001 onwards). Angiosperm Phylogeny Website. Version 9, June 2008 [and more or less continuously updated since]. http://www.mobot.org/MOBOT/research/APweb/.
Source: Wikipedia, Wikispecies: All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License