Field maple, hedge maple, common maple (Eng), arce menor, moscón, arce común (Spa), auró blanc (Cat), azcarro (Baq), alguergue (Glg), bordo-comúm (Por).
DID YOU KNOW...? Because of its abundance in Europe this is the most commonly represented maple leaf in Gothic and Romanesque column capitals.
Deciduous tree that can be up to 20 m tall, with a straight trunk and dense and wide-spreading branches that form a close-packed crown. The leaves are deciduous, simple, and not hairy on either side. They are 3-8 cm long and palmate usually with 5 deep lobes. There are cases where the basal lobes are missing which leads to confusion with the Montpellier Maple (Acer monspessulanum L.), but the leaf size, form and arrangement of the fruit is unmistakable. The leaves are opposite, secrete latex when cut, and have long, reddish stalks. The flowers are greenish and somewhat inconspicuous, and are borne in hanging groups in spring. The fruit are paired, and known as samaras, or keys, and have a membranous wing to allow them to be dispersed by the wind. The seeds ripen in autumn, are flattened and have wings that form an angle close to 180°.
This species is usually found along rivers, in gorges, on shady slopes or within stands of other trees such as Portuguese oaks, English oaks, beeches, holm oaks and firs. It also appears in hedgerows and shrubby fringes, and is rarely found forming stands or copses. It is found at altitudes of up to 1200 m, can stand the cold well, and mainly grows on limestones and cool soils. This species can live up to 150 years.
It is found across Europe, in Asia (Caucasus, Siberia, Mongolia, Turkestan and Asia Minor), and north Africa. It lives in the northern half of the Iberian Peninsula, principally in the northeast.