October Glory Maple Complete Guide To Grow And Care

Native to North America, the October Glory maple tree is a cultivar of the red maple, valued primarily for its stunning reddish-orange to scarlet fall leaves. However, it is a visually appealing specimen plant throughout three distinct seasons of the year thanks to its dense, rounded canopy and glossy, green leaves in the spring and summer. Because it can withstand pollution, this medium-sized shade tree is a wonderful choice to grow in full to partial sun beside a busy urban roadway. Similarly, this resistant tree tolerates a broad range of soil conditions, even deficient in nutrients, which contributes to its low-maintenance nature.

October Glory Maple Tree Overview

Common Name  October Glory maple tree, red maple
 Botanical Name  Acer rubrum ‘October Glory’
 Family  Sapindaceae
 Plant Type  Tree
 Mature Size  40-45 ft. tall, 30-35 ft. wide
 Sun Exposure  Full, partial
 Soil Type  Well-drained
 Soil pH  Acidic
 Hardiness Zones  4-9 (USDA)
 Native Area  North America (species)

October Glory Maple Tree Care

The following are the principal needs for upkeep when cultivating an Cctober Glory Red Maple tree:

  • Plant in any kind of well-drained soil, though sandy soil will need a little more watering. 
  • For the finest fall color, place the tree in direct sunlight. 
  • This tree’s thin roots could disturb hardscapes, so place it away from walkways and roadways. 
  • Fertilize nothing unless the tree is quite old and starting to lose its vigor. 
  • In early October or at the end of summer, do very little pruning.

Light Requirements

October Glory Maple can be grown in partial shade, although full sun will probably yield better fall color. But the further southward you go in its range, especially before it becomes established, the more it can benefit from a little afternoon shade.

Soil & Potting

October Glory can grow on sandy, thick clay, or the ideal mix of loams. But it will need more watering in sandy soil. Although the October Glory maple tree is very tolerant of most soil types, there are certain types of soil that it should not be grown in. If you want red fall color, do not grow it in alkaline soil. You’ll get pale yellow leaves instead.

Watering

October Evenly moist soil is preferred for glory maples. For short periods of time (such as during yearly flooding), it can even withstand damp soil; in fact, one popular name for the species plant is “swamp maple.” Long term, nevertheless, efficient drainage will help it develop more healthily. Furthermore, in the southernmost point of its range, it will need consistent irrigation due to its low tolerance for drought, particularly in well-drained soil.

Temperature and Environment

The cold resistance of October Glory Maple makes it valuable. It can withstand the South’s heat and humidity and might function fairly well in zone 8. Zone 9 is a viable home for it, but there are better options.

Fertilization

In the first year of its life, when your October Glory maple tree is attempting to establish itself, do not fertilize it. Maple trees usually don’t need much fertilizer even after that. However, you can give an older tree a boost by fertilizing it once a year with a slow-release fertilizer rich in nitrogen if you see that it is losing vitality or if you want your specimen to grow exceptionally quickly. To find out what kind of support your soil needs, do a soil test yourself or have one conducted by your local county extension before making any changes to it.

Types of Maple Trees

Native to North America, maple trees—including Acer rubrum and its cultivars—as well as Japanese maples, or Acer palmatum, are among the most often planted landscaping trees. Fall color enthusiasts notably like them, however Japanese maples in particular frequently give much more, such as beautiful forms. However, exercise caution while choosing the ideal maple tree for you, since they differ in size and color of their fall foliage; certain species may even be invasive in your region. Maple trees include, for example:

Autumn Blaze red maple (Acer x freemanii ‘Autumn Blaze’): Reminiscent of October Glory, the foliage reaches 40 to 55 feet in height and 30 to 40 feet in width.

Inaba Shidare Japanese maple (Acer palmatum var. dissectum ‘Inaba Shidare’): In April, the foliage is dark purple; by summer, it turns purplish-red; and in September, it turns blazing crimson. This little tree has a weeping appearance and is between 12 and 15 feet tall and wide.

Crimson Queen Japanese maple (Acer palmatum var. dissectum ‘Crimson Queen’): 

In addition to its eponymous foliage color, which is crimson in the summer and turns scarlet in the fall, this miniature tree measures 8 to 10 feet tall by 10 to 12 feet wide and has a weeping form.

Pruning October Glory Maple

Any pruning you conduct should be done sparingly and while the branch is still tiny. Because wide angles are stronger and help you avoid breaking from storms, prune off any branches that form extremely narrow angles with the trunk or other large branches. Pruning should be done just outside the branch collar to aid in the tree’s wound closure. Pruning is best done in the late summer or early fall; if done in the spring, the tree will likely flow sap.

Propagating October Glory Maple Tree

Although October Glory maple trees are rarely grown from seeds, you can inexpensively increase the number of them in your landscape by rooting a cutting from an existing plant. Using cuttings, October Glory maple can be propagated as follows:

  1. Get ready by gathering the following materials: a clear plastic bag, sticks, pruning shears, work gloves, potting soil, rooting hormone powder, and a container. 
  2. After adding potting soil to the container, pierce a 2-inch-deep hole in the center. After watering the dirt, put it aside. 
  3. Take the cutting after sterilizing your pruners with isopropyl alcohol. The cutting should be around 4 inches long and should come from the tip of a branch that appears healthy and is showing fresh growth. 
  4. Remove any leaves that might be on the lower portion of the cutting, leaving two leaves on the upper portion. 
  5. Scrape off two inches of bark from the bottom of the branch, all the way around, using the blade from your pruners.
  6. After dipping this now-bare, 2-inch cutting part in the powdered rooting hormone, place it into the soil hole you made. 
  7. Using sticks, hang a plastic bag over the container to make a greenhouse tent. 
  8. Take down the tent and place the container to a bright window once the cutting starts to take root. 
  9. For ten days, bring your sapling inside at night and outdoors during the day to let it become acclimated. Plant it where you want it when it hardens off.

Overwintering

October Zone 3 is cold-hardy for glory maple trees. To insulate the tree’s root zone, place a 3-inch layer of mulch around the tree’s base to the north of that. However, don’t pile the mulch up against the trunk as this could encourage vole damage.

Cut off any sick, damaged, or dead branches in the late fall. Fertilize your tree sparingly in the fall, since you want to prevent new foliar growth from being harmed by winter’s bitter cold.

Common Pests & Plant Diseases

October glory maple tree rarely experiences pest or disease problems. However, in the event that an issue does develop, take the required action to preserve the best possible condition for your specimen. Here are two instances:

Leaf Spot

Examine your plant’s leaves on a regular basis to quickly identify any pests or illnesses. Leaf spot is one ailment to watch out for; it manifests as brown patches on the leaves. Since the lower limbs of the tree have the maximum humidity, leaf spot, a fungal disease, frequently initially manifests itself there. Leaf spot ruins the beauty of your October Glory maple tree but does not usually pose a threat to its health or necessitate the use of strong fungicides. As soon as you discover afflicted branches, remove them to stop the disease from spreading. Moving forward, take preventative actions, such as:

  • Ensuring appropriate distance apart to encourage improved airflow. 
  • Watering first thing in the morning to allow the sun to dry the land. 
  • Watering from the ground up to prevent wetting the foliage. 
  • Putting the garden to bed in the autumn while maintaining good hygiene.

Scale

Initially, scale could go unnoticed as an insect nuisance because it moves very little and seems to be a lump. Look for these brownish, scabby bugs on the undersides of the leaves when inspecting them. They deplete your plant’s nutrients, but they are quite simple to eradicate with an insecticide like organic neem oil.

Common Problems With October Glory Maple

This tree requires very little upkeep. However, there are a few concerns that require attention:

Thin Bark

Because of its thin bark, the tree is susceptible to injury from tasks like string trimming and mowing. Damage to the bark can let bacteria in and cause health problems. Use a tree guard to shield the bark.

Salt Tolerance

The October Glory maple tree can withstand pollution from cities, but it cannot tolerate the salt that is frequently used to melt snow and ice on country roads throughout the winter. If planted in such places as a street tree, it might not do well. It’s also not the ideal selection for coastal towns, where Quercus palustris, a salt-tolerant pin oak, is a superior choice for red fall color.

Also Read: Xylosma Complete Guide To Grow And Care

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