SelecTree: Tree Detail

General Notes

A hybrid between Acer rubrum × Acer saccharinum.

Provide good drainage in clay soil. Rarely flowers. Fast growing cultivar with a dense, rouded habit. Red-orange fall color makes this a stunning landscape tree. Some confusion surrounds the naming of the Autumn Blaze Maple. ‘Jeffersed’ is the cultivar and Autumn Blaze is the trade name.

Trees may be referred to as male or female.

Family: Sapindaceae
Previously listed in the Aceraceae family.


Acer rubrum ‘Autumn Blaze’
Acer × freemanii ‘Autumn Blaze’
Acer rubrum × Acer saccharinum.

Tree Characteristics

Erect or Spreading with a Low Canopy.

Rounded Shape.

Has Deciduous foliage.

Height: 55 – 65 feet.

Width: 30 – 40 feet.

Growth Rate: 24 to 36 Inches per Year.

Longevity 50 to 150 years.

Leaves Palmate, Medium Green, Red or Orange, Deciduous.

Flowers Showy. Red. Flowers in Spring. Has either male or female flowers (dioecious). Trees may be sold as male or female.

Red Winged Seed, Large (1.50 – 3.00 inches), fruiting in Summer.

Bark Dark Gray, Exfoliating or Scaly.

Shading Capacity Rated as Moderately Dense in Leaf.

Shading Capacity Rated as Moderate out of Leaf.

Litter Issue is Dry Fruit.

Freeman’s maple

Tree & Plant Care

Avoid pruning maples in spring as they are ‘bleeders’ and will lose large amounts of sap

Disease, pests, and problems

Verticillium wilt (fungus) is a potential problem for maples; maple bladder gall.

Disease, pest, and problem resistance

This hybrid has the strong branch attachment of the red maple and fast growth rate of the silver maple.
Less susceptible to chlorosis symptoms (yellowing leaves) than red or silver maples.

Native geographic location and habitat

Of hybrid origin, a cross between two native trees, red maple (Acer rubrum) and silver maple (Acer saccharinum)

Bark color and texture

Bark is fairly smooth and silver-gray, becoming fissured with age.

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, texture, and color

Simple leaves in pairs (opposite); 3 to 5 inches long.
The 5-lobed leaves are deeply lobed, with toothed sinuses; often resemble those of silver maple.
Medium green with a silvery underside.
Fall color is red-orange to yellow, variable by cultivar.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size

Flowers are inconspicuous. Some trees will have both male and female flowers, some will have only male flowers.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions

Fruit are winged seeds in pairs (samaras).
Some cultivars produce no fruit.

Cultivars and their differences

“These plants are cultivars of a hybrid of two trees that are native to the Chicago Region according to Swink and Wilhelm’s Plants of the Chicago Region, with updates made according to current research. Cultivars are plants produced in cultivation by selective breeding or via vegetative propagation from wild plants identified to have desirable traits.”

Armstrong Freeman’s maple (Acer x freemanii ‘Armstrong’): An upright, narrow form, growing 50 to 70 feet high and 15 to 20 feet wide. Fall color is an orange-red, depending upon the season.
Autumn Blaze® Freeman’s maple (Acer x freemanii ‘Jeffersred’): A rounded to broad oval tree, growing 50 to 60 feet high and 40 to 50 feet wide. Has a strong central leader and better branching habit than silver maple. Fall color is a consistent orange-red. Originally thought to be a male tree, but has produced fruit in some cases.

Autumn Fantasy® Freeman’s maple (Acer x freemanii ‘DTR 102): A broadly oval form growing about 50 feet high and 40 feet wide. Produces bright red fall color.

Celebration® Freeman’s maple (Acer x freemanii ‘Celzam’): A broadly oval form growing about 50 feet high and 35 feet wide. Leaves are similar to silver maple, but this cultivar has a more uniform growth habit, making it more resistant to storm damage. It is more tolerant of urban conditions. Fall color is yellow to orange.

Firefall™ Freeman’s maple (Acer x freemanii ‘AF#1’): An upright oval form growing 50 feet high and 35 feet wide. The orange-red to red fall color develops a little earlier than other cultivars.

Marmo (Acer x freemanii ‘Marmo’): This cultivar has a uniform, upright to columnar form. It grows 45 to 70 feet high and 35 to 40 feet wide. Has a strong central leader and excellent branching habit. Fall color is an interesting mottled blend of red and green to burgundy, and yellow. Produces no fruit. The parent tree was selected from the collections at The Morton Arboretum. A Chicagoland Grows® introduction.

Sienna Glen® Freeman’s maple (Acer x freemanii ‘Sienna’): This cultivar has a strong central leader and a uniform, pyramidal shape. It grows 50 feet high and 35 feet wide. Fall color is orange to red-burgundy.

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