What it looks like

Manitoba maple is unique amongst our native maples for having compound leaves that resemble Ash leaves, with 3-9 toothed leaflets. Leaves turn yellow or yellowish-green in the fall. Young twigs have a waxy powder on them that can be rubbed off. It is a fast-growing, short-lived tree, to about 60 years old.

Where it is found

Manitoba maple is named for being the largest maple native to the Prairies, but it also grows in Southern Ontario and in the Northwest from Kenora to Thunder Bay. Female trees produce many winged seeds each year, and it has become naturalized in many cities and towns across Ontario.

Planting Tips

  • Size: Up to 20 m tall
  • Moisture: Adaptable from seasonally flooded areas to dry soils
  • Shade: Prefers full sun
  • Soil: Adaptable to many soil types

Manitoba maple has weak wood and usually requires pruning to maintain good form, so review other species for tree planting in school yards, around power lines or near homes. Manitoba Maple is best used as a restoration species for tough sites or areas where it is native.

Manitoba maple prefers floodplains and stream banks, but is also adaptable to dry, disturbed sites.

Did you know?

In the Prairies, Manitoba Maple is tapped to make maple syrup.

Image credits

  • Tree: Public domain (USDA)
  • Leaf: Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service
  • Bark: Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service
  • Fruit: Sean Fox, University of Guelph