Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Acer ginnala the lilac scented maple

For the last two weeks or so, when I walk Biscuit in the morning and pass a next door neighbor's house, I've been noticing the scent of lilac. By now, the few Syringa vulgaris lilacs in the neighborhood are over for the year. The nearest tree lilacs are a few blocks away, too far for the scent to carry. 
Where in the world was the lilac scent coming from? 
As I passed under it I could see that the neighbor's small maple tree was in full bloom. But who ever heard of a fragrant maple? I knew this maple to be Acer ginnala, the Amur maple. I've been walking under this one for years and never before noticed the lilac scent. Perhaps this is the first year it has bloomed. I checked the books. Sure enough, some of them mention that it is fragrant (Bean in fact says very fragrant).  But none mentions that it is lilac scented. Who would not want a lilac scented maple? 

1 comment:

DC Tropics said...

I'm surprised this species isn't grown more. During a trip to Provincetown, Massachusetts many (MANY) years ago, a bit earlier than our usual summer visits, there were several maples on the street where we were staying, they were blooming, and they were very fragrant. I had no idea what they were at the time, but later decided they must be Acer ginnala. That was quite a surprise.