I planted a Scarlet Maple. The deer quickly ate all the leaves. The next spring it came back. Then, the winter killed it back. This spring it returned but now the leaves are no longer scarlet. Will the tree return to its original scarlet color?
The Gardener’s Answer
Hi, Lloyd: Scarlet Maple (Acer rubrum) also commonly known as a Red or Swamp Maple is an excellent specimen tree. Do you know if you are growing the species or one of the many cultivars? Fall colors range depending on cultivar from greenish-yellow to orange and bright red. It is a misconception that all red maples have vibrant red fall color. All are deciduous and as long as the tree is healthy, next spring as the new growth emerges it will return to that brilliant red foliage that we all admire.
Your tree is still considered young and the bark can be damaged by deer rubbing. Protecting your tree would be a good idea if you have not already done so. Happy Fall!