Maple Propagation, What Works?

therianthrope

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Hello all,

So, I was wondering what experiences people have had with growing maples for bonsai. From seed, cuttings, or layering.

Specifically, my neighbor has an amur maple, with about 20% of it's branches overhanging my yard. Last week I collected about 50 seeds from it's fall on my lawn and now I'm contemplating asking them if I could take some cuttings or maybe even try air layering next spring...

Any thoughts, B-nut? Are they difficult to sprout (I've started stratifying the amur seeds), what kind of success rates? Do they grow well from cuttings (with or without rooting agents), or respond well to layering?
 

jk_lewis

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Where you live, I'd just put some seeds in a pot, set the pot outside in the winter cold, and let the sprout as Ma Nature wants them to. They are invasive in your area and sprout readily.

They do not make the best maple bonsai.
 

rockm

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I have had several forest plantings of Amur maple for the last 15 years or so. They are bulletproof in colder climates and grow like weeds. They can be brutally root and top pruned and are forgiving in most other areas--including over and under watering. They are hardy to something like Zone 4 or even below. I have to leave mine unprotected all winter to prevent them from beginning growth in early Feb.

Their downside is they grow like weeds and produce coarse twigging -- so they can look rather stiff and gangly if not pruned back hard.

You can probably air layer them in the spring pretty easily--get a branch with decent bark and some movement. Seeds are fine too, if you have the patience.
 

treebeard55

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Japanese and trident maple can be reproduced from air-layers and cuttings, so I would think Amur maple probably can too.

I've heard only two cautions about Amur maple: that they can take a lo-o-ong time to heal cuts, and that they can shed branches with no more predictability than a politician in primary season. Otherwise, enjoy!
 

therianthrope

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Where you live, I'd just put some seeds in a pot, set the pot outside in the winter cold, and let the sprout as Ma Nature wants them to.
I'll try this with a handful... my concern was that it's so dry here, they may not get the moisture they need to soak through the pericarp and germinate. But since I've already soaked 'em... it'd be good to know if I can skip the artificial stratification.
I have had several forest plantings of Amur maple for the last 15 years or so. They are bulletproof in colder climates and grow like weeds. They can be brutally root and top pruned and are forgiving in most other areas--including over and under watering. They are hardy to something like Zone 4 or even below. I have to leave mine unprotected all winter to prevent them from beginning growth in early Feb.

Their downside is they grow like weeds and produce coarse twigging -- so they can look rather stiff and gangly if not pruned back hard.

You can probably air layer them in the spring pretty easily--get a branch with decent bark and some movement. Seeds are fine too, if you have the patience.
Good stuff, rockm, I saw your amur threads and it's made me excited for the spring.
Japanese and trident maple can be reproduced from air-layers and cuttings, so I would think Amur maple probably can too.

I've heard only two cautions about Amur maple: that they can take a lo-o-ong time to heal cuts, and that they can shed branches with no more predictability than a politician in primary season. Otherwise, enjoy!
Thanks, treebeard. These cautions you've heard, I wonder if it's a climate thing or...? For the cuts, they make stuff for covering/healing them don't they?

I know they're not ideal, but I can get them readily and cheaply, and since I haven't had much luck at nurseries yet (and things are getting cold quick) I may have to go with it.
 

edprocoat

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Where you live, I'd just put some seeds in a pot, set the pot outside in the winter cold, and let the sprout as Ma Nature wants them to. They are invasive in your area and sprout readily.

They do not make the best maple bonsai.

Or, just wait till spring and collect the saplings from your gutters!:)

ed
 

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