Herbs & Plants

Acer acuminatum

Botanical Name: Acer acuminatum
Family: Sapindaceae
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Sapindales
Genus: Acer
Species: A. acuminatum

*Acer caudatum G. Nicholson 1881 not Wall. 1831
*Acer sterculiaceum K. Koch 1869 not Wall. 1830

Common Names: Tapering Leaf Maple • Nepali name: Kanchiro

Habitat: Acer acuminatum is native to the Himalayas and neighboring mountains in Tibet, Kashmir, northern India, Nepal, and Pakistan(Eastern Asia – W. Himalayas.) It grows on Open ravines on shady aspects at altitudes between 2400 – 3300 metres.

Acer acuminatum is a small to moderate sized deciduous tree, growing up to 15 m tall. Twigs are hairless. Leaves are 5-12 cm across, 3-5-lobed, (basal lobes small or absent). An identifying feature of this maple is that the leaf-lobes end in long tapering tip, about 1 cm long. Margins are sharply toothed, and the base is either heart-shaped or flat. Leaf stalks are 5-10 cm long, slender, often reddish. Flowers are borne in racemes, female flowers at the end of leafy shoots, and the male ones on leafless lateral shoots. Flowers are 4-merous, 5 mm across, greenish. Sepals are 4, oblong, 3-4 mm long. Petals are 4, ovate, shorter than sepals. Fruit is a samara, 2-3 cm long, divergent to erect, often reddish when young. Tapering Leaf Maple is found in the Himalayas, from Kashmir to C. Nepal, at altitudes of 2100-3000 m. Flowering: March-April.


Of easy cultivation, it prefers a good moist well-drained soil in a sunny position but tolerates some shade. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Chlorosis can sometimes develop as a result of iron deficiency when the plants are grown in alkaline soils, but in general maples are not fussy as to soil pH. This species is often confused with A. papilio. Most maples are bad companion plants, inhibiting the growth of nearby plants[18, 20]. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.

Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame, it usually germinates in the following spring. Pre-soak stored seed for 24 hours and then stratify for 2 – 4 months at 1 – 8°c. It can be slow to germinate. The seed can be harvested ‘green’ (when it has fully developed but before it has dried and produced any germination inhibitors) and sown immediately. It should germinate in late winter. If the seed is harvested too soon it will produce very weak plants or no plants at all. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on until they are 20cm or more tall before planting them out in their permanent positions.

Layering, which takes about 12 months, is successful with most species in this genus.
Cuttings of young shoots in early summer . The cuttings should have 2 – 3 pairs of leaves, plus one pair of buds at the base. Remove a very thin slice of bark at the base of the cutting, rooting is improved if a rooting hormone is used. The rooted cuttings must show new growth during the summer before being potted up otherwise they are unlikely to survive the winter. Good results are usually obtained.

Edible Uses:
The leaves are used as a tea substitute.

Medicinal Uses:We have no data.

Other Uses: The leaves are packed around apples, rootcrops etc to help preserve them. Wood – compact, moderately hard. It is seldom used.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


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