Favorite japonicum?

Discussion in 'Maples' started by paxi, Nov 1, 2008.

  1. paxi

    paxi Active Member

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    I am an admitted palmatum snob, but realized the error of my ways with recent purchases of acer campestre carnival and acer shirasawanum aureum. With that in mind I ask, "if you had to have just one japonicum, which one would it be?"

    I am zone 5b, need something relatively hardy for my brown thumb. Do japonicums follow the typical morning sun afternoon shade dictum?
     
  2. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    I'd want the wild type, as found in the natural forests of Japan
     
  3. alex66

    alex66 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    my last japonicum planted Attary!is good for zone 5(read in the book maples for the garden)
    ciao
    ps again your finger is brown?
    for me is green!!
     
  4. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    I absolutely LOVE Japonicums!! I've been buying up every cultivar I can get my hands on. So far my favorites are A.j. 'Vitifolium', A.j. 'Takinogawa' and A.j. 'Green Cascade'. Pics below are in that order.
     

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  5. jacquot

    jacquot Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    For me a Meigetsu, which I believe is the species form, is stunning! I also have other cultivars, all of which I like very much, but this is spectacular for form, leaf shape and size, overall impact, and fall color. It is a very strong and substantial tree. Most of my japonicums are in morning sun and doing very well. The Meigetsu gets afternoon sun with no ill effects. It is just starting to color now, the colors evolve with much variation. Beautiful tree! My only issue is with the lovely unfurling leaves in spring that certain birds and squirrels regard as a delicacy. I've actually have this problem with other japonicums--and no other Asian maples. Last year I put the holographic tape on the limbs in early spring and it seemed to work.
     
  6. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    jacquot,

    I got in a tiny Meigetsu, and after your description I can't wait for the springtime so I can see the leaves! How big is yours? Does it grow fast?? I've never heard the thing about the squirrels before - very odd. I hope they don't get mine!

    Thanks!
     
  7. nelran

    nelran Active Member

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    Plain, and simple for me... If I have to have just "one japonicum" will be the famous "Aconitifolium". (Anayway that's not the case: we all know that it's practically impossible just get one). Actually I have two nice specimens of this cultivar. Other is a 'Vitifolium'. As K4, I just want to add "A.J. 'Meigetsu', A.j. 'Takinogawa' and A.j. 'Green Cascade'.

    Nelran
     
  8. jacquot

    jacquot Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Mine is about 10' tall now but with a much larger trunk caliper and limbs than other maples I have of that size. It would have been taller except for the spring devastation 2 years ago! Be prepared for this. I had aconitifolium hit lightly one year and then the next they got almost every bud in one day as well as on this tree. The leaves unfurl in large soft curls and must taste very good. I've seen squirrels eating the new growth on our white oak, too, but it is huge. Other culprits are house sparrows and crows. This must be like candy to them. With age and scale it will be less of a problem, but I will protect again next year. My neighbors must have thought I was nuts. I sprayed all around the base of both with squirrel repellent, too. Meigetsu is the most substantial Asian maple I have and I placed it where it can grow freely.
     
  9. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Here's the list of what I have so far. The only ones I have of any size are Aconitifolium, Takinogawa, and Fairy Lights. The rest are under 3', but as you mentioned about placing where it can "grow freely", some of these cultivars can get pretty huge!

    A.j. 'Aconitifolium' - 15'
    A.j. 'Fairy Lights' - 8'
    A.j. 'Giant Moon' - 8'
    A.j. 'Green Cascade' - Mounding 4'
    A.j. 'Meigetsu' - 33'
    A.j. 'Mountain Shadow' - 15'
    A.j. 'O hisami' - 30'
    A.j. 'Otaki' - 15'
    A.j. 'Takinogawa' - 20'
    A.j. 'Vitifolium' - 35'
    A.j. 'Woods #2' - 30'
    A.j. 'Yama kagi' - 15'
     
  10. Poetry to Burn

    Poetry to Burn Active Member

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    No one mentioned 'Aka omote' which is my favorite AJ at this time.
     
  11. prairiestyle

    prairiestyle Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Of the japonicums I have ('Aconitifolium', 'Aka Omote', 'Attaryi', 'Dissectum', 'Green Cascade', 'Itaya', 'O isami', 'Vitifolium'), my favorite at the moment is the 'O isami'. It put on a simply stunning fall show this year, turning shades of neon orange and pink. It looked like something off of a blacklight poster - like it would glow in the dark! Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture before the winds took away most of the leaves.

    However, some of my japonicum cultivars are new acquisitions, and I haven't gotten to appreciate them in all of their seasons. I'm sure with time, each one will try to prove itself worthy of more admiration. :-)
     
  12. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Ooh goody! I have an O isami on order! I'll have to wait for next year for the colorful leaves, unfortunately.

    Thanks Prairie.
     
  13. prairiestyle

    prairiestyle Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Kaitain, how is the fall color on your 'Woods #2'? Also, since it's noted for its large leaves, how do they compare in size with those on your other japonicums?

    That cultivar is on my short list, but I'll wait until next spring to get my hands on one.
     
  14. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Here's a couple of pics of mine. It's a tiny one, and just starting to show some fall color (which I think will be nice). I haven't seen any huge leaves yet, but this is my first year with this little tree.

    Do you know the ultimate size of Woods #2? I read conflicting assesments.


    Take care!
     

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  15. Poetry to Burn

    Poetry to Burn Active Member

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    Here's a little bit of color on 'Woods #2". Small plant, 2nd yr graft.

    'Aka omote' has 2nd flush leaves so no autumn color at all so far.
     

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  16. prairiestyle

    prairiestyle Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    I haven't really found much information on 'Woods #2', other than a few brief descriptions on various websites. I'd definitely be interested in knowing more about it too... I imagine Ed Woods is THE guy to ask! (edit- or someone from Bonsai Village in Aurora, OR)

    Edit: Also, thank you both for posting your pictures!! I really need to get better about taking pictures of my trees.

    Edit #2: RIP Edsal "Ed" Wood... appears that he introduced many quality plants.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2008
  17. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Pictures not a problem. Last night we had a killing frost (down to 28 degrees F, -2 C), but I took my Woods #2 and several other cultivars I wanted to see the fall colors on into the studio over night, so their leaves weren't frozen. I'll post more pics as it progresses in its autumn finery.
     
  18. winterhaven

    winterhaven Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    So do any of them leaf out in color or have summer color?
     
  19. paxi

    paxi Active Member

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    we got that same frost. I have some plants in ground for about 4-6 weeks. The soil is getting kinda dry but I didn't water b/c of the impending below freezing temps. thoughts?
     
  20. Poetry to Burn

    Poetry to Burn Active Member

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    Winter,

    'Aka omote' for one leafs out with a burgundy-ish hue if it get some sun. All of the AJs I grow have vibrant green summer tones.

    But AJs have a charm of their own different than APs. In general they are sturdier looking, more stout and they are a little coarser in leaf and in form. Their merits are a little different. Spring leaves can be very pubescent and primal looking but bark and changing summer color aren't high points for any of the AJs i grow.
     
  21. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Paxi,

    I would go ahead and water. Freezing temps usually affect the first few inches of ground at the most this time of the year. It takes a lot to freeze the ground solid, so roots can still take up moisture until things really get to the deep-freeze stage (I think root growth stops at 46 degrees F, and water absorption stops at about 38 degrees F). The worst thing that can happen is for the plants to get dehydrated, then nasty cold temps and windy weather. The result is a garden of freeze-dried ornamentals!

    Winter,

    I don't know of any red-leaved japonicums, if that's what you mean, but my 'Takinogawa' has purple leaf edges and tips most of the season. There is also a variegated cultivar with bold white patches on the leaves, but I don't have that one yet.
     
  22. winterhaven

    winterhaven Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Purple tips? Interesting.

    I don't need it to be red, I just like color, color and more color.
     
  23. jacquot

    jacquot Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    My Aconitifolium just finished an absolutely spectacular fall show. It is in an island on the back terrace and getting fairly large now, I got it as a 5 yr tree maybe 6 years ago. I also collected seed and will stratify for spring, the only ones I'm taking this year. Otaki was also lovely, less intense, but a pink red with definite yellow streaking that held for longer than most. It almost looked painted. I'd love to have Oregon fern, myself. I don't think anyone has mentioned that.
     
  24. Poetry to Burn

    Poetry to Burn Active Member

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    AJs are equals with APs when it comes to fall color.
     

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  25. Kaitain4

    Kaitain4 Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Winter,

    I posted pics of my A.j. 'Takinogawa' in the summer. Check out pics earlier in this thread for a view of the purple tips. Those are summer pics, not fall.
     

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