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How Long Do Maple Trees Live? (And How to Tell Their Age)

How Long Do Maple Trees Live? (And How to Tell Their Age)

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Maple trees are so beautiful and you likely love yours if you happen to have one in your yard. You might have grown up in a house that had a huge maple tree and you just knew that you had to have one for your home as an adult.

When you plant a maple tree, it’s normal to wonder a bit about how to care for it. You want it to grow strong so that it can be enjoyed for many generations.

How long do maple trees live, though? Are they capable of surviving for a long time like some other trees?

Keep reading to learn about how long maple trees live on average. You’ll also get some basic information about how to determine the age of a maple tree.

Most Maple Trees Will Live for a Long Time

Most maple trees are going to live for a very long time assuming that they’re being cared for properly. On average, a maple tree will live anywhere from 130 years to 300 years.

There have been maple trees that have survived for up to four hundred years as well. A sugar maple tree has the potential to live that long if it’s cared for by dedicated people who know what they’re doing.

Knowing that maple trees can thrive for a long time should make you happy. The maple tree that you planted in your yard will have a good chance of surviving quite a bit longer than you.

That being said, it isn’t necessarily simple to care for maple trees. If you want your tree to grow strong and thrive, then you’ll need to care for it the right way.

One of the most essential parts of keeping these trees healthy is watering them enough. The tree needs to have access to enough water to ensure that it will be able to keep growing.

Understand the Ideal Environment for the Maple Tree

Understanding the ideal environment for the maple tree that you’ve planted is important as well. There are quite a few different types of maple trees out there.

Some maple trees will do just fine in certain environments while others will not be able to grow there. For example, a sugar maple tree is capable of growing in USDA zones three through eight.

The smaller Japanese maple tree can be grown in zones five through eight. That means that this smaller variety won’t be able to thrive in zones three and four despite the sugar maple doing well in those zones.

Before planting a maple tree, it’s going to be important to know what USDA hardiness zone the tree is supposed to be planted in. Ensure that where you live matches up with the needs of the plant.

Maple Trees Need Room to Spread Out

Maple trees are going to need quite a bit of room to spread out, too. If you plant a maple tree in a crowded area, then it’s going to have trouble growing.

Try to learn about how big the maple tree that you chose is supposed to get. Sugar maples can grow up to 100 feet tall, and you’ll need to take that into account when picking a spot for one.

If you don’t have much room, then you should pick a smaller variant. The aforementioned Japanese maple usually only grows to be approximately eight feet tall.

Pick a maple tree that will be practical for your yard. Doing so will help you to get better results.

How Can You Tell the Age of a Maple Tree?

What if you bought a house that already had a nice maple tree out front? Is there an easy way to determine the age of the tree?

You likely know that people can determine the age of trees by counting the rings. However, you don’t want to cut your maple tree down to try to figure out how old it is.

Luckily, there are some other methods that can help you to get this information. It might not be possible to determine the exact age of the tree, but you can get a better idea of how old it is.

Compare the current height of the tree to the estimated height of a mature maple tree. You can also compare the size and width of the canopy.

You should be able to look at charts to see how much specific maple trees are expected to grow. This will give you data for how big and how wide a maple tree should be by a certain age.

It won’t take long to take measurements to get data from your tree. Then you’ll be able to compare and contrast to get a basic idea of how old the tree is.

You can also tell a bit about how old a tree is by examining its bark. Many maple trees will have smooth bark when they’re young, but the bark will become shaggier as the trees age.

Final Thoughts

Knowing more about maple trees and how long they live should encourage you. The maple tree that you have in your yard has an excellent chance of living for a very long time.

You’re going to need to take care of it so that it can continue to thrive, though. Ensure that the tree gets enough water, protect it from pests, and give it enough room to reach its maximum growth potential.

If you want to know how old your tree is, then the easiest way is to measure how big the tree is currently. You can then compare that data to the growth chart for the type of maple tree that you own.

You’ll have a basic understanding of how big the tree is, and you’ll be able to keep on enjoying it. These trees are truly beautiful and it makes sense that you’d want to have one in your yard.

Those who are still thinking about getting a maple tree should plan ahead before purchasing. You need to make sure that you have the space for the tree so that it can grow well.

So long as you’re willing to put in the time and effort, you’ll have a good experience caring for maple trees. It’ll provide aesthetic appeal while also giving you a nice shady spot to enjoy on hot summer days.


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