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Aureum Japanese Maple Tree for Sale - Buying & Growing Guide

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Acer shirasawanum 'Aureum'

The Aureum Japanese Maple Tree, known botanically as Acer shirasawanum 'Aureum,' is a small, slow-growing tree with an astounding set of foliage. During most of the spring and summer, the leaves of the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree are bright yellow-green. When fall arrives, that color transitions to a vibrant orange. Along with offering those lovely leaves, this plant is also compact enough to fit in most growing locations and can adapt well to containers as well. 

  • The foliage of the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree changes colors throughout the year. 
  • The Aureum Japanese Maple Tree is a compact plant with a slow growth rate. 
  • This plant is a perfect pick for container gardens.
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Plant Care



Ideally, the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree should grow in partial shade or in a location that receives filtered light.



Water this plant about once per week in the absence of rainfall during most of the growing season.



Apply a balanced fertilizer once per year in spring or not at all.

Planting and Care

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by John Haryasz | Horticulture Writer and Landscape Designer – last update on December 26, 2022

Planting instructions

It is best to plant your Aureum Japanese Maple Tree in a partial shade location or one that receives filtered light, such as a planting area under a tall tree canopy. You can grow this plant either in the ground or in a container. For in-ground planting, dig a hole that is as deep as the root ball is tall and at least twice as wide. If you use a container, it should also be considerably wider than the plant’s root ball to allow for root expansion.

Watering and nutrients

The overall water needs for the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree are neither comparatively high nor are they low. Generally, it is best to start by watering this plant about once per week during the spring and summer, while adjusting that rate in the case of rainfall or excessively hot and dry weather. Often, you can get by without feeding your Aureum Japanese Maple Tree at all. However, if you want to feed this plant, you can do so by applying a balanced fertilizer once per year in spring.


While the foliage of the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree is the main ornamental feature, this plant holds flowers each year as well. Those flowers appear in small purple clusters in the spring. These flowers attract pollinators, and since the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree is a self-fertile plant, pollination typically occurs easily. Once pollination is successful, the flowers will give way to a set of winged samaras that carry this plant’s seeds and which many people find attractive.


Another convenient aspect of growing an Aureum Japanese Maple Tree is that this plant does not require regular pruning. Since the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree has a slow growth rate, it is not likely to become overgrown, which is why annual pruning is not always necessary. Still, it is always beneficial to remove any branch that is dead, damaged or diseased. If you need to perform such pruning, it is best to do so during the late winter or early spring season while the plant is exiting its dormant phase.

Pests, diseases, and animals

Unfortunately, there are several pest and disease issues that your Aureum Japanese Maple Tree can encounter during its life. Regarding pests, some of the most common ones are insects like aphids, caterpillars and borers. However, there are several other insects that can infest this plant. Additionally, your Aureum Japanese Maple Tree may experience leaf spots, several forms of rot, canker and other infections. However, with the right care and attention, it is entirely possible to reduce the odds of these problems and treat them when they do occur.

Achieving maximum results

At times, it is possible to grow your Aureum Japanese Maple Tree in an area that receives more sunlight than a partial shade setting typically does. However, exposing this plant to more direct sunlight can have negative outcomes. Firstly, the brilliant color of this plant’s leaves can be somewhat muted in the wrong light setting. Additionally, too much direct light often leads to leaf scorch. If you are going to plant this species in a relatively sunny area, ensure that it at least receives afternoon shade.


What is the growth rate of the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree?

The Aureum Japanese Maple Tree is a relatively slow-growing tree overall. At most, this plant will add about one foot of new growth in a single year, but it may produce less growth in many cases. This slow growth remains a reality even if you fertilize your Aureum Japanese Maple Tree regularly. As such, you should not take slow growth to be a sign of poor overall health.

What is the parent species of the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree?

The parent species of the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree is a plant that goes by the botanical name Acer shirasawanum. Interestingly, many of the most popular plants that go by the name “Japanese Maple” come from a species known botanically as Acer palmatum. However, both these species do belong to the maple genus and have their origins in and around Japan, which is why they can both legitimately include the words “Japanese Maple” in their common names.

Is the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree cold-hardy?

The Aureum Japanese Maple Tree has decent cold hardiness and can grow well throughout hardiness zones five, six, seven, and eight. However, in the colder parts of that range, it is possible for the Aureum Japanese Maple Tree to experience some frost damage, especially during later winter storms. Based on that slight vulnerability to frost, it's often best to give this plant some protection from harsh winter winds.

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Mature height
10-15 ft.
Mature width
10-15 ft.
Sunlight requirement
Shade to Part Shade (morning sun only)
Growth rate
Botanical name
Acer shirasawanum 'Aureum'
Shipping exclusions
Grows Well In Zones
Growing Zones: 5-8 i Growing zones help determine if a particular plant is likely to grow well in a location. It identifies the average annual minimum winter temperatures across the U.S. provided as a map by the USDA.
(hardy down to -10°F)

Aureum Japanese Maple Tree

Acer shirasawanum 'Aureum'
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