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Big-leaf Maple Trees

 Interesting & fun facts about Big-leaf Maple Trees


Sometimes called an Oregon maple – Acer macrophyllum is its’ scientific name. This tree can produce leaves as big as 12 inches across. It is native to the Pacific Northwest.


Big-leaf Maples grow very fast when they are young, and the growth slows down as they age.  They are typically 30-75 feet tall but can grow up to 200 feet tall in the right conditions.  It is a spreading tree with a rounded head and may grow as wide as it is tall.  The trunk can be more than 4 feet in diameter, and they can live to be 200 years old.


The big-leaf maple tree is used for many things.  Native Americans used the bark for making rope and containers for cooking and the wood is very popular for carving items such as dishes and paddles. The wood is also used for making veneers for furniture, musical instruments, and interior paneling. The burls that are seen on the trunk are used for clocks and tabletops.


The seeds, buds and flowers are a favorite food for many small mammals and birds,   and the squirrels will store the seeds. This big tree is even more interesting by the life it supports.  Its deeply ridged bark creates an ideal habitat for epiphytes (plants that grow on trees without soil).


Like other maple trees the big-leaf maple produces sap that can be boiled down to make maple syrup.

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