The Most Beautiful Japanese Maple, Ranked

Choose the Japanese Maple you think is the most beautiful!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on May 25, 2024 06:21
Japanese Maples are celebrated trees known for their vibrant foliage and elegant structure, often transforming any garden into a spectacle of color. With so many varieties, each possessing unique beauty, choosing the most visually striking can be subjective and daunting. This task takes on new meaning when considering the varied contexts in which these trees thrive, from serene private gardens to bustling public spaces. By establishing a community-driven ranking, we offer a tool that helps gardening enthusiasts and landscapers alike identify which Japanese Maples are favored for their aesthetic qualities. Every vote counts towards shaping a list that reflects a wide array of preferences and perspectives, making it a valuable resource for anyone looking to enhance their space with these stunning trees.

What Is the Most Beautiful Japanese Maple?

  1. 1

    Acer palmatum 'Bloodgood'

    A stunning variety known for its deep red leaves that maintain their color well throughout the season.
    • Color: Deep red
    • Height: 15-20 feet
  2. 2

    Acer palmatum 'Osakazuki'

    Known for its large green leaves that turn a spectacular bright scarlet in autumn.
    • Color: Green to bright scarlet
    • Height: 15-25 feet
  3. 3

    Acer palmatum 'Katsura'

    Early in the season, its leaves emerge with an orange cast, turning to a bright yellow-green in summer, and then to a vivid orange-yellow in the fall.
    • Color: Orange to yellow-green
    • Height: 10-12 feet
  4. 4

    Acer palmatum 'Tamukeyama'

    An older variety that is still popular for its deep crimson leaves that turn even darker in summer before brightening to scarlet in fall.
    • Color: Deep crimson to scarlet
    • Height: 8-12 feet
  5. 5

    Acer palmatum 'Orange Dream'

    Boasts unique orange-yellow foliage in spring, turning bright green in summer and golden yellow with hints of orange in fall.
    • Color: Orange-yellow to green
    • Height: 13-15 feet
  6. 6

    Acer palmatum 'Crimson Queen'

    A weeping, laceleaf variety with finely dissected, purplish-red leaves throughout the growing season.
    • Color: Purplish-red
    • Height: 8-10 feet
  7. 7

    Acer palmatum 'Sango-kaku'

    Famous for its coral-red bark and vibrant green leaves that turn golden in the fall.
    • Color: Coral-red bark, green leaves
    • Height: 20-25 feet
  8. 8

    Acer palmatum 'Seiryu'

    A unique upright laceleaf variety, with finely dissected green leaves that turn to a brilliant red in fall.
    • Color: Green to brilliant red
    • Height: 10-15 feet
  9. 9

    Acer palmatum 'Shishigashira'

    This maple is characterized by its crinkled, dark green leaves that become golden or crimson in the fall.
    • Color: Dark green to golden/crimson
    • Height: 15 feet
  10. 10

    Acer palmatum var. dissectum 'Viridis'

    A laceleaf variety with finely dissected, light green leaves that turn a beautiful golden-yellow in fall.
    • Color: Light green
    • Height: 4-6 feet

Missing your favorite Japanese Maple?

Error: Failed to render graph
No discussion started, be the first!

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most beautiful Japanese Maple. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or Acer is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 143 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each Acer once every 24 hours. The rank of each Acer is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

Trendings topics

Don't miss out on the currently trending topics of StrawPoll Rankings!
Additional Information

More about the Most Beautiful Japanese Maple

Acer palmatum 'Bloodgood'
Rank #1 for the most beautiful Japanese Maple: Acer palmatum 'Bloodgood' (Source)
Japanese maples have enchanted gardeners and nature lovers for centuries. These trees, native to Japan, Korea, and China, are known for their stunning beauty. They come in various shapes, sizes, and colors, making them a versatile choice for any garden.

The leaves of Japanese maples are their most striking feature. They can be deeply lobed or finely dissected, giving them a delicate, lace-like appearance. In spring, new leaves emerge in shades of green, red, or purple. As the seasons change, so do the colors. Summer brings a rich, lush canopy, while fall transforms the leaves into a vibrant display of reds, oranges, and yellows.

Japanese maples grow well in many climates. They prefer well-drained soil and partial shade. Too much sun can scorch their delicate leaves, while too much shade can dull their colors. With the right conditions, they thrive and become focal points in gardens.

These trees are not just beautiful; they are also versatile. They can be grown as small trees, large shrubs, or even bonsai. Their size makes them suitable for both large landscapes and small gardens. They can be planted as standalone specimens or used in group plantings for a more dramatic effect.

Caring for Japanese maples is relatively easy. Regular watering is essential, especially during dry periods. Mulching helps retain moisture and keeps the roots cool. Pruning should be done sparingly, as these trees have a natural, graceful shape that requires little intervention. Removing dead or damaged branches is usually sufficient.

Japanese maples are also relatively pest-free. They are not prone to many diseases, making them a low-maintenance choice. However, aphids and scale insects can sometimes be a problem. Regular monitoring and prompt treatment can keep these pests in check.

Gardeners often choose Japanese maples for their ability to create a sense of tranquility. Their graceful, arching branches and delicate leaves add a touch of elegance to any space. They are often used in Japanese gardens, where their beauty can be fully appreciated. Their presence can transform a garden into a serene retreat.

In addition to their aesthetic appeal, Japanese maples have cultural significance. In Japan, they are symbols of grace and serenity. They are often featured in traditional art and literature. Their leaves are also used in culinary dishes, adding a unique touch to Japanese cuisine.

Whether you are an experienced gardener or just starting out, Japanese maples are a wonderful addition to any garden. Their beauty, versatility, and ease of care make them a popular choice. With a little attention, they can thrive and bring joy for many years. Their changing colors and graceful form provide year-round interest, making them a true garden treasure.

Share this article