I have a small young acer butterfly that I bought last year. It's started leafing out, but for some reason one of the leaves is completely different to the others. Any idea why? View attachment 370691View attachment 370692
I would tag that branch and note the location of that bud. Once the flush finishes and hardens off, cut the branch to that bud (give some space for die back on the branch) to activate that bud. If it flushes out with the same odd leaves let it grow out. Once that hardens take some cuttings (do not remove the odd producing branch from the tree) root those and congratulate yourself on a new cultivar.....if it's reproducible.
So coming back to this one after a couple of years.
I ended up leaving this odd branch with different leaves and didn't do anything to it. Just wanted to see how it progressed.
This year I've really noticed it again as it's now leafing out. The whole branch is a completely different leaf shape to the rest of the plant, which has normal (if small) Butterfly leaves. Not grafted at all, grown from cuttings.
It's a bit of a strange plant.
"It should be clearly evident that any new selection suitable for naming as a new cultivar must have such outstandingly desirable and distinctive features that it can easily be distinguished from any other existing cultivar. Discerning judgement must be exercised in selecting and naming a new form. This dictum applies with equal force in the case of dissectums and variegated maples."
This happened on my butterfly last year as well. From observations it seems to be fairly common on variegated plants that they will revert back to the standard form in places. I know comparatively very little of A.palmatum cultivars, so couldn’t say whether there is anything distinguishing from the species plant in this reversion, but I suspect not particularly. Looks like a nice, healthy branch though so I’d probably layer it off and let butterfly (which doesn't seem to be the most robust cultivar) do its thing.
I too have a Butterfly JM, but it is only a year old since a cutting. Therefore my knowledge is quite sparse. But the green leaf branch seems to be growing vigorously and I wonder if that is robbing energy from the Butterfly side? Or does it produce enough to actually augment the Butterfly side?