With the Red Sunset® Maple, dazzling color arrives earlier & lasts longer than other maples.

Delivering outstanding red and orange color weeks earlier than other varieties, the Red Sunset® is one of the best maples on the market. This tree’s deep, dazzling red hues can develop almost one month before other similar varieties, giving you longer-lasting fall color.

Known as one of the best red maple cultivars, this tree delivers on color. Winter buds, clusters of small winter/spring flowers, leaf stems, twigs, and winged summer fruits all carry a red hue. And of course, the fall show is breathtaking, with red and orange leaves blending to give a sunset effect.

The Red Sunset ® displays rich, vivid color where other maples can’t. Plus, its strong branching stands up to high winds and intense storms with ease.

Nothing can stop the Red Sunset® from displaying its vivid range of bright hues. Plant your Red Sunset® Maple along the road’s edge, in borders, or as an ornamental that stands on its own. It is also suitable for use as a specimen for the front lawn and works well as a small shade tree. It’s easy to picture this tree as the central feature of your fall foliage display. This maple has shallow roots, making it ill-suited to line a driveway, sidewalk or walkway, where it could cause buckling if planted too closely. No matter where it grows, the Red Sunset® Maple puts on a show and transforms your landscape into the best yard on the block.

The mature size the tree attains (a manageable 40 to 50 feet)  is an important consideration for homeowners with small yards who need assurance that a tree is not going to overwhelm their properties.

The Red Sunset®  Maple tree is a moderately fast grower that needs a lot of water. This trait immediately suggests that it would be well suited to being grown in a rain garden. While the tree tolerates being in standing water for short periods of time, over the long run, it will perform better in soil that drains well. .

Plant Red Sunset® Maple in full sun to promote optimal fall leaf color. It is best planted in late fall or early spring to reduce transplant stress.

The first time that you will be feeding Red Sunset® Maple is when you initially plant it. The best fertilizer to use at planting time is a slow-release fertilizer like Espoma Bio-tone, because this type of fertilizer is less likely to burn the tender young roots of the tree and works to promote root health and strength. As a further precaution against burning the roots, mix the fertilizer thoroughly into your soil first rather than simply pouring the fertilizer into the planting hole.

Red Sunset® Maple likes soil rich in nutrients and with a pH value that is slightly acidic. You can achieve both of these ends by feeding it with a fertilizer intended for acid-loving plants, such as Espoma Holly-tone.  Follow the instructions on the label to determine the amount of fertilizer to apply. Thereafter, feed in early spring annually with a fertilizer meant for acid-loving plants, such as Espoma Holly-tone.

When you’re ready to prune your tree, do so in late winter before its buds break. Prune away dead or damaged branches back to the nearest healthy bud at any time of year.

Among the worst pests affecting Red Sunset® Maple are aphids, borers, caterpillars, leafhoppers, and scale. Its chief disease problems are canker, fungal leaf spot, root rot, and verticillium wilt. The pests can often be eradicated by using neem oil. Unfortunately, the disease problems are not as easy to solve (after the fact) and are best addressed through prevention. Some preventative techniques include optimal site selection, spacing to promote airflow, and a proper watering regimen.

Photo credit: Missouri Botanical Garden