Discussion in 'Maples' started by Cjart, Nov 7, 2020.

  1. Cjart

    Cjart Active Member

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    Boise, Idaho, USA
    Hi everyone. I have a question about how to tell if a Japanese Maple is dormant. Most of my trees were frozen in a hard freeze several weeks ago before the leaves had a chance to color for fall. All the leaves are still hanging on the trees. I have planned to move some of them around this month. They are all in ground. We have had warmer weather since the hard freeze and I am wondering when I can move the trees. Does anyone have any advice about this? I am attaching some photos of my Aureum which actually had started to get some fall color, hanging on to its leaves. Thanks!

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  2. Acerholic

    Acerholic Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    Hampshire England Zone 8b UK
    Good evening C, if you have had a 'hard' freeze for several days then your trees should now be dormant. Although as this was early in the Autumn and it has warmed up there could be new shoots, this will tell you that your tree is not in fact asleep. So check round to see if it is re shooting.
    I try to wait until the leaves have dropped to move my maples, but these days as it is getting warmer in September and October it is difficult. I have had new growth at the beginning of November and this tells me that dormancy has not occurred yet. So my rule of thumb is to move when the leaves are browning. There is very little shock from roots being cut at this stage, although there will always be some stress, but the trees can cope with this amount. I also prefer to move when the ground still has some warmth, I'm zone 8b, so that the roots can establish before Winter. This might not be so good for you as you have already had hard frosts and that suggests you suffer severe cold a lot earlier, so a very late Winter or very early Spring move might for you be more beneficial.
    Very pretty tree btw.

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