The spherical maple is a great tree for small home gardens, one of the most interesting house trees out there. Even without pruning, it develops a spherical, branchy crown that gets a little wider with age. The maple can be kept in shape and bridled by a cut. The tree grows 3 to 5 meters high. The trunk remains at a maximum height and only grows in girth. The annual growth of the crown is 20 to 40 cm. The ball maple is one of the bird protection trees and is also a bee pasture. The tree is very popular as a pot tree, but also as a house tree, for example on both sides of the house entrance.

Care of the maple tree

A maple is an ideal house tree. It is also suitable for city gardens because it is extremely resistant to urban climates. It grows slowly, needs little maintenance, almost no pruning and has a great appearance. In addition, the maple is still very robust and not very susceptible to disease. Even with pests, he hardly has any problems. The only drawback for some garden fans is the rather high price. A small maple, about one meter high, costs between 40 and 50 euros. At a height of 1.50 to 2 meters it is already 100 euros, and the trend is rising.

The maple is the ideal street tree. It is suitable for cramped city gardens, small front gardens, formal areas, for planters, but less for open landscapes.

location

The location should not be too shady. Sun is much better tolerated than shade. Light shade, on the other hand, is acceptable.

  • Sunny to semi-shady location
  • Very heat tolerant
  • Plan enough space
  • Don’t plant too close to the house
  • Wind-exposed locations are unfavorable.

plant substrate

The spherical maple does not place great demands on the plant substrate, it just must not be too acidic. In the wild, the maple thrives on nutrient-rich, moist, loose and often calcareous soil. In the garden, however, it is very soil tolerant.

  • Not too heavy soil, definitely permeable.
  • A fresh, moderately dry, rather moist, loose and slightly calcareous substrate is favourable.
  • Low-oxygen soils are unfavorable.
  • No waterlogged and acidic soil

plant

Of course, before planting, you have to know how big such a tree can get, so that you can plant it right away where it can stay. Transplanting is always unfavourable, especially when the tree has developed deep roots.

Plants can be planted all year round except during frost. Container goods are available in the tree nursery 12 months a year. However, these trees are expensive. Bale goods are cheaper and also of good quality. Bare root trees are the cheapest.

  • A fairly large planting hole is important. It must be at least as big as the crown. The root needs space.
  • Loosen up the subsoil so that the roots can easily push through and spread. Deep roots are better than shallow ones.
  • insert tree. Enrich soil to fill with compost.
  • Tree reacts sensitively to over-fertilized substrate when planting.
  • Water well.
  • A lot of water will also be needed in the coming weeks to grow.
  • After about 8 weeks, watering once a week is enough.
  • After about a year, the tree has grown properly and usually does not need watering.
  • Keeping in buckets is also possible.

watering and fertilizing

The maple needs a lot of water until it grows. But you have to water with method. You don’t water that often, but then you water it plentifully. There is a very simple reason for this. If the water supply is plentiful, the tree tends to develop superficial roots. If the water is scarce, it quickly suffers from a lack of water because it has not “learned” how to fetch it from deeper soil layers. If you water less frequently, albeit more plentifully, the tree will grow its roots downwards, in deeper regions. Now he can catch up on water in times of drought. He copes much better, even if there is no water from above.

  • It is ideal to form a pouring rim of soil around the planting hole. In this way, the irrigation water gets into the ground in the right place. Nothing is given away.
  • Regular fertilizing is not necessary.
  • However, adding compost in the spring is cheap.

To cut

The maple can, but usually does not have to be cut. Even so, it retains its characteristic round head. Thinning out occasionally and removing dead or diseased wood is usually sufficient. So the tree is always rejuvenated a little. You can make a shape cut. This is particularly useful for older trees, which tend to have broader crowns and this is not desired. The best time for this is in the leafless state. You shouldn’t cut it too late, because then the flow of juice will start again. The cut should be completed by the end of January.

  • Cutting too late robs the tree of its strength. The tree “bleeds”
  • Best date until the end of January
  • However, the tree also tolerates a radical pruning, should this ever be necessary.
  • In this way you can rejuvenate the tree extremely if you have neglected it very much.
  • The crown can also be completely rebuilt in this way.
  • With the radical cut, all branches above the grafting point are cut back to a kind of head.
  • Always cut to “eye”! Do not leave any dead wood that is susceptible to fungus!
  • It is also possible to leave a few well-distributed and strong branches as guide branches, so to speak as scaffolding.
  • Always cut out damaged branches as quickly as possible, because unclean breaks and wounds offer a good point of attack for pests.
  • It is good to brush off larger wounds.

hibernate

Hibernation is usually not a problem for the maple tree. In particularly frosty conditions, i.e. when it is freezing cold and bright sunshine, it makes sense to shade the trunk of the tree to prevent frost cracks.

When keeping them in a planter, it doesn’t hurt to wrap up the bucket and place it on polystyrene or wooden slats. In any case, don’t forget to water, but only on frost-free days.

multiply

The maple is a grafted tree. The spherical shape can only be achieved if the spherical shape, Acer platanoides ‘Globosum’, is grafted onto an Acer platanoides. This also explains the high price of the trees. It’s called head trimming.

If you want to grow a maple with a round crown at a lower cost, you can take another maple, preferably one that grows quickly and give it a round shape through a targeted crown structure and pruning. It is then a maple in shape, but not in name 😉

I also read that the maple can be propagated by seed. I can’t really believe that a ball maple is made from it. In any case, they are cold germs. So the seeds have to be stratified.

diseases and pests

The maple is one of the robust and resilient trees. Small insects hardly bother him. Now and then powdery mildew appears. In healthy and large trees, however, this usually disappears by itself. It does not hurt to remove infested leaves, at least not to leave fallen leaves with the pathogen on them. The infestation in the coming year is then inevitable.

  • Powdery mildew – fungal disease, recognizable by a whitish coating on the leaves. Common in muggy weather and when new leaves are forming. It is not necessary to take action against the fungus, but it is advisable, if only for the reason that the spores are not transmitted to more sensitive plants. Home remedies often help, such as a milk-water mixture (1 part milk and 9 parts water) or a baking powder-water mixture (3 packets of baking powder to 5 liters of water). It should be sprayed regularly, every 7 days.
  • Verticillium Wilt – Leaves will wilt despite adequate watering. Blame it on a fungus. This infects the root from the ground or penetrates the tree through injuries. It clogs the water channels. This leads to wilting and the death of shoots. Direct combat is not possible. Cut out infested shoots, clear infested trees. Don’t use the space anymore.
  • Red pustular disease – fungal disease that often occurs after cutting. It mainly attacks weakened or dead wood. When it nests, it secretes toxins. They can even lead to the death of the tree. The red pustule disease can be recognized by orange to red outgrowths as well as a discoloration of the tree bark and possibly also a detachment of the same. As a preventive measure, make precise cuts if necessary. If infested, cut away and burn anything that is diseased. Definitely don’t put the waste in the compost. The fungus not only survives there, it continues to spread.

Conclusion
The spherical maple is an ideal house tree. It looks great and is easy to care for. Small gardens in particular are ideal as locations. The crown is easy to keep in shape and can be trimmed to create a shady spot underneath. One downside is the slightly higher price. This comes about through the refinement. Otherwise there is nothing to criticize about this wood. With good care, illnesses rarely occur. All in all a recommendable tree.

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