Among nature's most ornamental of deciduous trees, Japanese maples (Acer palmatum) are loved across the temperate regions of the globe. Many published resources, both in print and electronically, are available to purchase, borrow and read to learn all about the history, variability and care of these small trees. Local garden experts and botanical gardens may also have a nice living collection of Japanese maples to see in person as well as conduct lectures or presentations on the plants, too.
Visit your local public library or bookstore (physical building or an online shopping site) and search for books and magazines on Japanese maples. Use the botanical name, Acer palmatum, as a search term, too.
Contact local garden clubs or plant societies asking if they know of any lectures, presentations or local experts on Japanese maples. Enroll in short courses, attend club meetings or contact a fellow maple enthusiast to start networking and gleaning information.
Visit a botanical garden or arboretum. The American Public Gardens Association can guide you to maple plant collections in your state or region. Do not ignore large zoos, as often they have substantial plant displays as part of their animal exhibits.
Contact your regional university or community college, asking if they have a horticulture degree or botany program. If 'yes', inquire if they have continuing education classes, lectures or other contacts regarding trees and maples in particular. Often such institutions have some form of greenhouse, garden or arboretum open to the public to view and study. Ask if their plant collection includes Japanese maples, however, before visiting.