60622It is impossible to say who the parents were. So many specie were hybridized to develop the many cultivars of flowering maple that the Latin name of the collective group is simply Abutilon X hybridum, which means exactly what it looks like. They are hybrids of various and rarely documented species of Abutilon. The ‘X’ dispels any doubt. ‘Chinese lantern’ is another common name.

Flowers can be yellow, orange, red, pink or pale yellowish white. They look like small hibiscus flowers that do not open all the way, and some only open half way. Many hang vertically. Some hang at about forty-five degrees. Bloom is sporadic all year, and more abundant while weather is warm. The rather sparse evergreen foliage looks somewhat like maple foliage, with variable lobes.

The largest flowering maples do not get much taller than the eaves. Short types stay shorter than two feet. Stems can be awkwardly angular, even if pruned back to promote fluffier growth. Roots can be unstable, necessitating staking or pruning to lighten the load. Flowering maple prefers partial shade, and can tolerate significant shade, but can also do well in full sun if watered regularly.

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14 thoughts on “Flowering Maple

    1. No, they don’t. Pruning them back helps with stability so that they are less likely to fall over. Yet, no matter how much they get pruned, they eventually seem to get wobbly. In unrefined landscapes, their seedlings might come up in good spots before the original plant dies.

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    1. Do you mean that you are not familiar with it? Of course, it is not found everywhere. I do not know where it would not be hardy. This is an excerpt from the gardening column that is written for the West Coast of California between San Jose and Los Angeles.

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      1. Well, they may not be common where you are either. They do not live out in the garden where winters are too cold for them. This post is an excerpt from my gardening column, which is written for the West Coast of California, between San Jose and Los Angeles.

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      2. That would explain it. My first time in California, I was lucky enough to find a gardener on Catalina Island and I had all kinds of questions and led the guy around asking them all until he finally looked at me and said, Where are you from? like he was expecting me to say Mars. I said East of the Mississippi. That seemed to explain a lot.

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