Under natural conditions, silver maple is a bottomland tree while its cousin the sugar or hard maple is essentially a hill tree. Silver maples grow quickly and are often planted as a shade tree in yards and on city streets. They pay for their rapid growth by having rather brittle branches that easily break off in windy and other inclement weather.
A member of the maple family, box elder is often confused with poison ivy because its compound leaves sometimes grow in threes (though also in fives). A fast-growing tree, its winged seeds betray its relationship to other maples.
The sap of this tree is famous as a source for maple syrup, but its use in landscaping and for furniture is also widespread. In Missouri, sugar maple is a tree that inspires much “oohing and aahing” during fall color season.
MDC protects and manages Missouri's fish, forest, and wildlife resources. We also facilitate your participation in resource-management activities, and we provide opportunities for you to use, enjoy and learn about nature. Read more about our mission.