Maples thrive in the northern temperate zone. There are many different cultivars, some of which will not fare well in areas higher than zone 8, others which do well in zone 9. Some maples, such as the Nikko maple, have slow growth rates. Others, such as the painted maple, have fast growth rates. When choosing a maple for landscaping, review the different cultivars for coldness zone applicability and growth rate prior to purchasing.
Dig the planting hole three times as wide as the rootball and as deep as the rootball. Scarify the sides of the planting hole with the pitchfork. Fill the planting hole with water.
Prep the maple for planting by removing the pot or synthetic burlap from the rootball. If the burlap is organic, leave it on the rootball---just be sure to remove any staples or ties holding the burlap on the rootball. Organic burlap will eventually disintegrate and provide additional nutrients for the maple tree.
Center the maple tree in the planting hole and backfill the hole with soil. As you backfill, gently tamp the soil down around the roots.
Create a watering ring that's 3 inches high around the perimeter of the planting hole.
Mulch the maple tree with 3 inches of compost or pulverized bark. Mulching keeps moisture in the ground and promotes tree health. Water the maple with at least 1 inch of water.
Stake the tree with stakes and ties if the tree is planted in an area that is prone to high winds. Remove the stakes after the first growing season. Water the maple with at least 1 inch of water each week throughout the growing season. Watering deeply encourages deeper root growth and helps the maple establish itself.