Trees of Dickinson County: Silver Maple

In the east half of the state, sugar maples reign supreme. Who doesn't like maple syrup?

However, the silver maple (Acer saccharinum) is still a wonderful tree found in Dickinson County. They have actually been hybridized with red maples for a pretty, fast-growing tree (Acer freemanii).

silver maple tree


Silver maples grow 75-100 feet tall. It is a fast-growing tree, growing up to 24 inches each year.


Maples like wet-mesic soil and part-shade to full sun.


Silver maple leaves are simple, with each leaf growing on its own stalk opposite another. They have five deep lobes, and those lobes have toothed edges. The underside of each leaf is very pale or whitened.

Maple is the lone standout in northwest Iowa with red leaves in the fall, adding some color variety to the landscape.


Maples are known for winged seeds called samaras that grow about 1.5-2.5 inches long. Squirrels, birds and other small animals enjoy eating the seeds that have different nicknames, including helicopters, whirligigs, polynoses and spinning jennies.

maple seeds

Fall leaf color guide

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Identifying the leaves of trees native to northwest Iowa

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