WSU Clark County Extension

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Red Sunset Maple

Scientific name: Acer rubrum 'Franksred'

Type:Deciduous tree
Plant Requirements
Zone:4 to 9
Plant Characteristics
Height:45 ft
Width:35 ft
Bloom:Spring flowers
Bloom Time:March to April
Bloom Color:Red
Additional Characteristics



Wildlife value

Description Red Sunset maple is one of the commonly grown planted maple cultivars all across the United States. It is grown for its excellent brilliant orange-red fall color and wide site adaptability.

This deciduous shade tree grows to a mature height of 45’ with a width of 35’. It grows quickly to maturity and forms a rounded tree canopy. Young trees have a pleasing smooth grey bark.

In March red flowers emerge. By early April leaves start to emerge and un-fold. Leaves are distinctly 3-lobed, simple, 2” to 4” long, and are arranged oppositely. During the summer months the leaves are glossy green, but by early fall the tree starts to develop its characteristic orange red to red fall color. The red color lasts well into October. This is a female tree that produces fruit (seeds) which themselves are bright red. Squirrels find the red fruit tasty.

Red Sunset red maple survives on a wide array of sites, including those with heavy soil. It has shown high tolerance to flooding. This cultivar was first introduced by J. Frank Schmidt Nursery in Boring Oregon in 1966.

No serious insect or disease problems. Some leaf scorching can occur on young trees in hot areas.
For assistance, contact Dr. Charles Brun (, (360) 397-6060 5701
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