Garden Gem

What’s not to like about Flowering Maple?

Well, it’s not really a maple, but it sure does like to flower.  This Brazilian native is a shrubby perennial that will bloom ten months out of the year. The flowering will take a break in the hottest part of the summer and the coldest part of the winter. The yellow and red flowers hang like colorful pendants from the thin branches that also support leaves that do somewhat favor a maple leaf.

Abutilon megapotamicum is the scientific name, but flowering maple is much easier to say.  Plant in high shade or part sun and provide ample moisture. This subshrub (often a perennial if the winter is harsh) will spread by air-layering the branches.  Occasional, the plant can be thinned or controlled by separating portions with a sharp shovel.  Fertile soil and added compost will grow the most vigorous plants. Flowering maple is easy to grow and rewarding with its colorful floral display.

Hayes Jackson, Gardens Director

Photo courtesy: By Limulus – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,