I was admiring a maple today which I found as a seedling some years ago growing in the gravel near some of my container trees. This "possible child of Trompenburg" has the darkest spring foliage by far of any of my Japanese maples and I can't recall ever seeing anything as dark at arboretums and the like. I used to have 'O kagami' many years ago but as I remember it the volunteer is darker. It is really a very striking dark colour when viewed "in the flesh" and I will put pictures below that hopefully capture that effect. This got me thinking which are the Japanese maples with the darkest foliage? I have seen 'Black Lace' in photo's (and maybe in a nursery) and that must be a contender... but does it live up to it in real life? Any other candidates?