Acer palmatum Fireball is like a dwarf Fireglowmaple, but more compact. Small leaves are purple-red in the spring and hold this color through the summer then change to a fantastic dark scarlet red in the fall. Discovered as a witch’s broom – this maple prefers all day sun. A minimum of 5 hours of direct sunlight is necessary to hold the purple-red color in the summer. Without sufficient sun – red leaf maples evolve to green tones known as greening-out.
If you are looking for a miniature dwarf maple as a focal point in your garden – the Japanese Maple Fireball will not disappoint. With the sun shining on it’s leaves this maple is a real-time fireball. Good drainage is a must for all maples and over-watering can be trouble. Fireball is a slow growing dwarf or some would say a miniature. Slow growing maples do not need as much water as faster growing cultivars so adjust accordingly. For more information seeCare and Maintenance of Japanese Maples.
Acer palmatum Fireball like all maples may require some annual pruning to maintain the compact shape. If one branch jutes out a foot more than the rest, please don’t keep it that long. Shorten the branch to maintain shape and balance. See Pruning Japanese Maples for more information. In 10 years Fireball may reach 4′ tall and 3’wide. Once established this maple is hardy to -10 degrees USDA zone 6.
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 and the contributors to the group have a wealth of experience and lots of photos. 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.