Acer glabrum


Mister 500,000
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Somewhere South of Phoenix
Does anyone have any knowledge of this species and/or its varieties? Is it suitable for bonsai?

Vance had stated the following which has me doubting.

About the only native North American Maple reasonably suitable for bonsai is the Hedge Maple, this is not that. I am not sure which species it is but in the end you will probably consider your work with it like trying to domesticate a Zebra; looks like a horse but has its own mind, such is the case with native Maples.

The reason I ask is that it seems they are native to places not far from me and I am wondering if it is worth the trouble to look for a collectable one.

What I read from several plant databases is that they have 2-5cm leaves and bud back well after damage. Those things sound promising.
Indiginous to California, but not very good as bonsai. The leaves grow on canes similer to cotoneaster or barberry. They do not make attractive bonsai in that the foliage always look ratty.

The leaves are very beautiful and the plant is a semi bog plant liking it's feet rather wet. It is a toxic plant and death will occur if leaves are eaten. Watch out for children or animals. The sap and thorns can cause severe rash and doctor may be needed for easing the itching.

For me's not worth the trouble.

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I realize this thread is over 2 years old, but I saw a few Acer glabrum at the nursery today, a couple with some great nebari, and was curious about the species. Not sure about their suitability for bonsai, but every source I've found lists their toxicity level as none with the exception of one site which mentioned dermatitis and referenced the California Poison Control System which doesn't have Acer glabrum listed on their site. I'm also not sure they produce thorns. There were no thorns on the ones I saw today and I can't seem to find a pic of a glabrum with thorns. Smoke, maybe you were thinking of another species? Or a specific variety?
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