This fast-growing tree, the silver maple, has magnificent leaves: deeply notched, they show a silvery underside when turned by the wind. This maple blooms in early May, before the leaves appear. Silver maples are often planted in cities because of their ornamental appearance and rapid growth. Because of its invasive root system, however, this tree is not recommended for plantings along streets and close to houses.
This species prefers moist bottomlands and is common on the alluvial plain of the Saint Lawrence River and its tributaries, particularly around Lake Saint-Pierre. Silver maple tolerates spring flooding, Its seeds (keys), of limited longevity because of their sensitivity to dryness, germinate soon after they fall in early June.
Its wood, creamy white to light brown, is heavy and hard. It is not, however, as strong as the sugar maple. Like the red maple, this wood has no great commercial importance.
It is used to make furniture and flooring, boxes, crates and pallets.
Leaves, in opposite pairs, with deep pointed lobes, silvery green beneath.
Fruits, paired keys at 90 degree angle.