North Carolina is an interesting state because it is covered with mountains on the western part and is coastal on the eastern side. This means that there are hundreds of species of trees that can be found regardless of where you are. The oak is likely the most common tree in the state, but there are many maple trees as well.
Some of the most common trees throughout the state of North Carolina include the oak, pine, poplar, sweetgum, hickory, cypress, birch, beech, and of course, the maple tree. Maples are sturdy trees that produce eye-catching, colorful leaves in the fall, making them a favorite during this time of year.
Maples are also easy to grow and make the perfect shade tree, which are two of the many reasons they are so popular. They also tend to be drought-resistant so even if the season is unusually dry, your maple trees should survive. The state of North Carolina is home to three types of maple trees, and they are described below.
Whether you are looking for a maple tree for your back yard or for the local park or garden area, choosing the right one is a lot easier if you know a little bit about them.
1. Sugar Maple (acer saccharum)
Also called the rock maple, the Sugar maple is known for two significant achievements: it is the main tree used to produce maple syrup, and its leaves are always some of the brightest during the fall season. They can grow to 115-feet tall, although some have grown to nearly 150-feet, making this an extraordinary-looking tree indeed.
Its eight-inch-long leaves have five lobes and the fall colors can range from yellow to orange to bright orange-red. The Sugar maple tree is commonly planted in public and urban areas since it is easy to grow, attractive, and is large enough to grow successfully in parks and other big areas.
2. Red Maple (acer rubrum)
The Red maple is also called the soft maple, and it is the most abundant native tree in the eastern part of the United States. When the tree is fully grown, it can be as high as 100 feet, and its leaves come in many different forms. In addition, the Red maple is a very adaptable tree, able to adjust to many different soils and site conditions.
Because of its massive root system, the Red maple does very well in urban areas, and its uses include furniture, musical instruments, and the veneer industry, as well as for the production of maple syrup.
3. Chalk Maple (acer leucoderme)
The Chalk maple tree is native to the southeastern part of the United States, and it is smaller than many other types of maples, getting only to around 30-feet tall at the most. The reason it is named the Chalk maple is because of its bark, which turns light-gray or chalky white once it matures.
The Chalk maple looks similar to the Florida maple, but the Chalk maple has a smaller size and bigger leaves than the Florida maple. It is also a very shade- and drought-tolerant tree, making it very easy to grow successfully.