Acer shirasawanum Aureum is known as the ‘Golden Full Moon Maple’. Spring color is exquisite lime green. Summer color is a golden yellow-green with a tinge of red along the edges of each leaf. Fall color ranges from gold to orange to crimson on each leaf so that it is a kalidescope of color. Morning sun with afternoon shade is needed to prevent burning the leaves. Placement in either a northern or eastern location would be best. As such, this cultivar is highly desired for a smaller partial shade garden.
Acer shirasawanum Aureum is an older cultivar in the same genus as AutumnMoon, Jordan, Kawaiiand Moonrise. Shirasawanum refers to Full Moon maples that include the four mentioned above plus Johin,Mikado, and Red Dawn. All shirasawanum maples can be identified by looking at the flowers and subsequent seed pods [samaras]. If they point up rather than hang down then it is a shirasawanum maple – palmatum samaras hang down.
Aureum is a spectacular tree though very slow growing. Typically it takes 5-6 years to grow a 3 gallon size. Estimated height in 10 years is 6-7′. Because it is so slow growing it needs less water than most other maples. Do not over water – a critical error which can cause root rot and death. The average mature size is 8′ tall and wide in 20 years. Once established hardy to -20, USDA Zone 5.
If you love Japanese Maples as much as I do, you can learn more about these amazing trees by joining the Facebook Group – Japanese Maples and Conifers.It is free to join – you just have to be a Facebook member. The contributors to the group have a wealth of experience and post many photos. No question is dumb – you will not be criticized for lack of knowledge, rather you will get a variety of opinions from all over the country. This is what I value the most – learning about variations of growth, leaf size and color in different sections of the USA and around the world. I often participate in the discussions.
Limited Availability- 1 gallon size maples may be available late summer 2020. The 2 gallon size maples average between 16″ and 22″ tall. These maples grow slow and sell fast. The 3 gallons are full and between 23″-30″ tall.
The first photo shows a 7 gallon Aureum previously sold originally from Buchholz Nursery. The next two photos show my mature Aureum in the spring and then with fall color.