At a glance, you might think this beautiful plant is something out of a fairytale. Baldsmith Japanese Maple is more of a tree than a plant, and its beautiful leaves keep changing color. They are orange-green, they become green, pink and then turn to gold/bright orange. If you own a garden, this tree will add life to it.
- Family: Sapindaceae
- Subfamily: Hippocastanoideae
- Genus: Acer
- Species: Acer Palmatum
About the Genus Acer
Acer is a group of shrubs and trees all known as maples, and it consists of about 128 species. All of these species have a unique shape of palmate leaves, and they grow recognizable winged fruits. This particular genus is well known for its tourism attraction. It is a part of the popular leaf-watching traditions in several countries around the world, such as Japan and Korea.
Common Names and Synonyms
- Acer Palmatum Baldsmith
- Acer Palmatum Dissectum Baldsmith
- Baldsmith Laceleaf Japanese Maple
Origin and Distribution
Plants are natively found in Asia and some parts of Europe. Other locations include North Africa as well as North America. The particular species of Acer Laurinum is also found in the Southern Hemisphere.
However, Acer Palmatum Baldsmith, in particular, is native to Korea, Japan, Eastern Mongolia, China, as well as south-east Russia. Cultivars of the species are grown all around the world and are popular for their beautiful appearance.
Baldsmith Japanese Maple Features
Foliage and Stem
The beautiful palmate leaves of this species are well-known and popular for their shape and color, not just because it is beautiful, but also because it keeps changing. The plant shifts from looking bright red and orange in spring to various beautiful shades of green and pink in the summer. In autumn, they become yellow and orange-red. During a certain part of the year, both old, as well as new leaves, are hanging on the tree branches, looking like a stunning combination of a variety of colors. The approximate size of these leaves is about 4 inches.
The leaves of an Acer Baldsmith are deciduous, which means that the tree sheds its leaves annually. They even keep changing colors throughout the year before falling off.
Under the proper conditions and environment, this tree can grow up to a size of 2 to 3 meters and can spread as wide as 1 to 2 meters. Hence, their size makes them a great shade for other plants in your garden.
A Baldsmith Japanese Maple plant can grow in a minimum of -10 degrees Fahrenheit, which means that it is pretty tolerant to lower temperatures and harsh external weather and will not die immediately.
Good news for those who live in moist climates, this plant is humidity tolerant. It means that it does well under high moisture in the air and does not complain.
Since it likes to be watered regularly and enjoys humidity in the air, drought-like conditions would not be ideal for it. Hence, make sure you provide it proper irrigation and drainage to keep it happy and satisfied.
Since these plants can grow into big, tough trees, they are pretty pressure resistant. I will not die off immediately in case of sudden or acute pressure. However, the case is not the same for growing plants. While they are juvenile, make sure that they stay safe and away from extreme pressures.
Disease and Pest Resistance
Under inappropriate or inadequate conditions, horse chestnut scale, aphids, verticillium wilt, and such other pests and diseases can damage a Baldsmith Japanese Maple tree. Other diseases include honey fungus and tar spots. Trees that are being grown in pots are also prone to vine weevils attacks.
These problems can be prevented by keeping a close watch on the tree, especially when it is a growing plant. Examine the plant regularly to make sure it is clear of any signs of pests and diseases.
In case of such an occurrence, isolate the potted plant if you can, and prune the damaged parts of a plant. You may use commercial fungicides to get rid of the problem. If the plant is attacked by bugs and pests, use insecticides to make sure the bugs and their eggs are removed.
In terms of their growth rate, these plants are fairly slow. So, if you are doing everything right and your plant still does not seem to grow rapidly, do not worry because this is normal.
Luckily, these plants are reportedly not toxic. Hence, they are safe to be kept around your pets and children. However, nibbling and ingesting plant leaves is not the best idea in general. They may contain harmful chemicals, germs, and dust. So, it is still best if you are careful not to let anyone feed on these plants.
Baldsmith Japanese Maple trees can live for years if given the right care and environment to grow. They don’t die off easy, and they can last you a very long time, looking beautiful and adding grace to your garden.
Since these trees do not require a lot of extra care or effort, they are very low-maintenance. You do not have to groom and prune them regularly, and they do well under outdoor environments and low temperatures. They are fond of humidity and direct exposure to the sun. Thus, there is not much that you have to do except watering it and feeding it properly.
From November to February, during the winter season, the plant becomes dormant. They like to stay low-key and untouched. Just give them the appropriate amount of water and avoid propagating them during this period.
Baldsmith Japanese Maple Care
To make sure that this plant is growing healthy and beautiful, give some regular water and occasional fertilizer. Make sure the soil stays moist and let the plant grow under the full sun. Pruning and grooming of the plant are not much of a problem since they are graceful naturally.
These trees love water. They prefer an even level of moisture in their soil regularly. Thus, during the warm or windy days, you can water it as frequently as needed. However, the plant can stay longer without being watered during the winter season.
The plant prefers to grow in rich, well-drained soil. This means that while it should be able to hold all the nutrients and moisture that is essential for the roots, it should not accumulate excessive water around them. Make sure the soil remains damp and moist (not wet), and maintain the pH to acidic or neutral.
In terms of exposure to the sun, they can grow well in direct exposure as well as shady environments. Since it is an outdoor plant, it can adapt to the shifting sunlight levels throughout the day.
The plant grows best in the hardiness zones 6 to 9. It means that it can take average winters well and can survive within the minimum temperature of 10 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit.
As mentioned before, Baldsmith Japanese Maple trees love humidity and moisture. When juvenile, you can add to the factor of moisture around them by misting or humidifiers. However, once they are growing outside, there is not much that you can do except watering it properly to maintain the hydration level of the soil. Natural humidity will have to do its job and keep the plant healthy.
You can fertilize the Acer Baldsmith in Spring and early summers using slow-release fertilizers or liquid ones.
To avoid outgrown roots and problems associated with it, re-pot the plant after every couple of years. Start by using smaller or medium pots and then increase the size as the plant grows. The ideal time to do this is in April or September.
Grooming and Mulching
You can keep the plant in good health by grooming it every year. Since the plant is tall and big, it will not be possible to do this more often. As for mulching, you can do it after a couple of years using well-rotted compost or garden manure. While the plant is still growing, remember that the mulch should be at a distance from the collar.
These plants have very little pruning requirements. Their natural shape is good enough, and you do not have to worry much about it. You can prune the overgrown or misplaced branches that might be irritating other plants or hindering their growth. The best chance to do this is during dormancy in the winter season. If not, the plant may become weak.
Cultivation and Propagation
Propagation of Baldsmith Japanese Maple trees can be done via seeds, grafting, and softwood cuttings. However, growing the plant through seeds can be a little more time-consuming than the other methods.
- Select a pot and prepare it with damp potting soil.
- Locate a new branch growing on the tree and carefully remove it.
- Remove the leaves from the lower part of the branch, but let a few branches stay on the top.
- Put the branch into the pot filled with soil.
- Make sure that a minimum of one leaf node is below the surface of the soil.
- For an added boost to the growth, you can dip the bottom part of the branch in water and then in growth hormone. This will make the branch sprout roots quicker.
- Place the pot in a warm, well-lit room with lots of humidity. Avoid direct exposure to the sun.
- You can mist the cutting a few times every day and make sure that the soil is damp.
Week 1-4: Keep the plant well hydrated and protected from harm.
Month 2-4: If all goes well, you will be able to see healthy roots developing by now.
After 6 months: You must remember that the plant is slow-growing and it may take years for it to develop to its mature height and size. Hence, be patient and keep giving it the right Baldsmith Japanese Maple care.
Displaying Baldsmith Japanese Maple
Maple trees are used for a variety of purposes. They are used for their beauty, displayed for attraction, and for growing various cultivars. They are grown as collections, and their commercial uses include wood and syrup sourcing. Other than that, they are also popular in the agricultural industry for their benefits for honeybees. Also, the tourist attraction is another main reason why these trees are widely popular and used.
When juvenile, these plants can be potted anywhere in the house around the garden. Since an early age, they are beautiful and add a bright POP of color to any space. Thus, adding them to a plain indoor setting or a dull empty corner of your lawn can add aesthetics to your place.
If grown in the garden, a Baldsmith Japanese Maple tree so beautiful should be located somewhere prominent in the garden, like the entrance or near the pond. However, you cannot change this location later, so make a thoughtful, permanent decision.
Baldsmith Japanese Maple for Sale
Before you buy a new plant, you must check it thoroughly. Examine the plant and make sure that it does not contain any abnormal growth or patches on its surface. Check for signs of bugs and pest attacks, as well as fungal infections.
Acer Palmatum Dissectum Baldsmith is a beautiful, elegant tree that is easy to maintain and simple to take care of. Adding this species to your garden will not only bring color and beauty to it, but it will also provide shade to other smaller plants in your collection. Plus, it is not toxic, so it is safe to be kept around pets and children. However, the plant is slow-growing, so you will have to be very patient throughout the process.