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Care of Bloodgood Japanese Maples

Red Maple tree image by Mr. D from

Japanese maple trees (Acer Palmatum) provide attractive, colorful displays in yards and landscapes. The Bloodgood maple produces masses of dark red leaves that turn crimson in the fall. This tree grows to a mature height between 15 and 20 feet and has blackish-red bark and red seeds. Like other types of Japanese maples, your Bloodgood maple requires certain elements to ensure good health and adequate growth.

Plant your maple in an area of your yard that receives full morning sunlight and partial shade in the heat of the afternoon. Placing this tree near a tall structure or near overhanging trees will help protect its tender bark from wind damage and sunscald. Dig a hole at least twice as wide as the rootball. Mix the removed soil with equal parts of rich, loamy potting soil and peat to ensure adequate drainage. Set the rootball in the center of the hole and fill in with your amended backfill. Firmly press loose soil to form an even surface around the base of your Bloodgood Japanese maple. Avoid leaving a depression that retains water after a rainfall.

Water your tree slowly, soaking it to the depth near the bottom of the rootball. Keep the soil around your maple tree slightly damp at all times. Depending on your climate, you may need to water your tree once or twice a week.

Place a layer of fresh straw around the roots of your Bloodgood Japanese maple tree. These trees require cool roots to thrive and grow. Insulate the roots with about 2 inches of straw, allowing an inch of space between the trunk and the surrounding layer of straw.

Feed your young tree with a time-release fertilizer. Choose one that lists maples on its label and apply according to the package instructions. These trees require adequate amounts of soil nutrients to survive and flourish. Adequate nutrients and moisture also encourage the formation of the vibrant foliage that gives this tree its name.

Protect your tree from damaging winds by tying it to stakes for the first couple of years. Evenly place three wooden stakes equal distances around the base of your tree's trunk. Set these stakes around the outer circumference of the rootball. Wrap a layer of thick, tree-wrap fabric around the trunk to protect the tree from the twine. Tie the twine from each stake to the wrapped trunk, creating even tension to hold the tree upright and steady in windy conditions.

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