Sugar and Red Maple Trees

This guide fulfills the need for an easy resource beginners can use to recognize the trees they encounter.

By Mark Mikolas
December 2017

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A Beginner's Guide To Recognizing Trees of the Northeast (The Countryman Press, 2016) Writer and hiker Mark Mikolas's takes away the confusion and guesswork by restricting the geography covered to 13 states where similar types of trees can be found, reducing the number of trees focused on to the most common, selecting the key features needed to identify a tree, and avoiding find distinctions between related species.

"We had not gone far before I was startled by seeing what I thought was an Indian encampment, covered with a red flag, on the bank, and exclaimed, “Camp!” to my comrades. I was slow to discover that it was a red maple changed by the frost." — Henry David Thoreau, The Maine Woods

Red Maple

Red maple is called red because its twigs, buds, and flowers are all red, and its leaves turn a flaming red in the fall—in fact, its leaves are among the earliest in the fall to start turning. It is also the most wide- spread deciduous tree in the eastern U.S., able to grow in wet and dry conditions, poor and rich soils, and in bottom-lands and at elevation.

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