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The Soft Maple a


A. saccharinum, Linn.

The soft maple or silver maple (see illustration, page 199) has a white-lined leaf, cleft almost to the midrib and each division again deeply cut. It is quick and ready to grow, and has been widely planted as a street tree, especially in prairie regions of uncertain rainfall. It is one of the poorest of trees for street planting, because it has a sprawl ing habit and weak brittle wood. The heavy limbs have great horizontal spread, and are easily broken by ice and windstorms. When planted on streets, they require

constant cutting back to make them even safe. Thick crops of suckers rise from the stubs of branches, but the top thus formed is neither beautiful nor useful.

Wier's weeping maple, a cut-leaved, drooping variety of this silver maple, is often seen as a lawn tree, imitating the habit of the weeping willow.