Why plant Red Pygmy Japanese Maple?
With its feathery, fine-textured leaves, Red Pygmy Japanese Maple will bring a feeling of lightness and softness to your landscape. Planted near the entrance to your home, it will be a welcoming tree that invites a closer look; planted by your back patio, its cloudlike foliage will inspire a peaceful frame of mind while you unwind at the end of the day. Besides its fluffy texture, this enchanting little ornamental tree also offers a marvelous show of changing colors though the seasons. Like a mood ring, its leaves shift from red in spring to green with red highlights in summer, to gold in fall. Truly a treasure.
Red Pygmy belongs to a category of Japanese Maples known as the “Linearlilobum” group, in reference to the leaves’ long, linear, ribbon-like lobes. The foliage of the trees in this group is often compared to that of bamboo. Red Pygmy is a Japanese tree discovered in an Italian garden by a Dutch nurseryman! C. Esveld Nursery of the Netherlands introduced it in 1969. Now in its sixth generation of management, this family nursery has been going strong for over 150 years. Japanese Maples remain one of their biggest passions.
How to use Red Pygmy Japanese Maple in the landscape?
Don’t panic if your Red Pygmy Japanese Maple has some leaves that are different from the super-skinny leaves it is famous for. This is normal. On some Japanese Maples, the new growth tends to produce wider-lobed or “juvenile” foliage. Once the branch is two or three years old, its leaves will assume the proper (“adult”) form. Different leaves coming from the base of the tree, however, should be pruned off.
Hardiness Zone: 5-9
How To Plant Red Pygmy Japanese Maple
This petite, slow-growing tree fits into any garden no matter how small, and caring for it is a breeze. Give Red Pygmy a site in full sun or light shade. As with most Japanese Maples, a location that offers morning sun while providing some relief in the form of shade during the hottest hours of the afternoon gives the best results. One disease that can strike Japanese Maples is verticillium wilt. This often fatal disease is best prevented by proper watering and feeding, which will empower your tree to use its own natural defenses to ward off such problems.
How To Water
Once you have found the perfect location to plant your Japanese Maple, it will appreciate regular water during the first few years in the ground. Be sure to keep it watered throughout dry spells until it has become established in your garden.
How To Fertilize
Incorporate Elements Starter Plant food granular form into the soil when planting. If planting in spring or summer, start fertilizing late fall using Elements Starter Plant food granular form on an annual basis each late fall. Continue this for the first three years to get your plant well established as it gives your tree the nutrients it needs to produce lush new growth for the following spring.
How To Prune
Little pruning is necessary for this slow-growing Japanese Maple. However, if suckers appear at the base of the tree, be sure to remove them!