Starting Japanese maple

I was wondering if anybody had some advice on where to get material to start a Japanese Maple. If you have an online suggestion that would be great, given the current circumstances. Also, what are recommendations on how to get started? Field grown? A more mature landscape maple and air-layer? Are there varieties that people would recommend (there are so many cultivars)?


If you wish to start from seed then you can check out “Sheffields” or " Schumacher" on line. If you are looking for seedlings and up I would try “Evergreen Garden Works” .
The information on the website gives a lot of background on Japanese Maples to help you decide.
I would recommend starting with the more vigorous cultivars such as Trident. Their growth rate allows more rapid development when learning the basic techniques of developing deciduous trees.
The smaller dwarf cultivars can take a long time to develop.

1 Like

Thanks so much! Just checked out Evergreen Garden Works and they have amazing information. Would you recommend planting the seedlings in the ground to allow them to grow more rapidly?

Actually, I prefer a staged approach with maples. I use pots and grow boxes in the initial stages to form the nebari and basic trunk movement. Then often use grow beds to thicken the trunk faster for a few years. Then I return to Andersen flats and grow boxes for further development. This approach works best for me with my resources and allows me to focus on development with trees on the bench, rather than prune and repot at ground level.
Choose the method that works best for your time and resources. If you pay attention to detail many variations of process can work.

1 Like

One of my favorite places for beautiful Japanese Maples is having a rare 3-day flash sale right now, and they have a section of maples for bonsai and dwarf maples too. I have about 7 varieties from them I got on a visit last year. Nice folks too.


Thanks so much both of you - I have bought some from Evergreen Garden Works as well as Mendocino Maples. Really excited to get started.

1 Like