Given the fact that Japanese maples are incredibly expensive, I?m not
surprised that you?re interested in propagating them yourself ? either
for fun or profit. Unfortunately while it looks like growing trees
from seed (given proper stratification) and getting them as seedlings
from the base of trees is not too difficult, there?s a problem with
the cultivars breeding true. It looks like grafting is the best way
to make sure you get interesting/identical varieties. I'm listing a
few websites that go into detail below.
Quick notes about all three options:
TreeBay posting to bonsaiTALK Forum
Plants for a Future: Acer palmatum
They do not recommend rooting cuttings or growing from seed.
Cuttings, they claim, often don?t get the moisture they need so fail
to thrive. Seed-grown trees don?t always resemble the parent tree ?
this is because there are so many cultivars that Japanese maples don?t
always breed true.
Alabama Extension Agency newsletter
For propagating from cuttings:
The Bonsai Site: FAQ
Propagation of Woody Plants by Cuttings
This is a bit of a general article, but it also has some notes
particularly appropriate for japanese maples (use heat!)
For growing from seed:
Mikes "Freeplants.com": How to Grow Japanese Red Maples from Seed
He's also trying to sell you a "system" as well as showing off how
easy this is/how much money he made off growing seedlings and starting
maples from seed. The advice is sound, though. Also note that this
article is reproduced ALL OVER the internet ? I found it at least four
times by accident.
You can, if you wish, purchase an e-book about growing Japanese maples
($24.99): http://japanese-maple.com/jmebook.html. The guy who is
selling this book also sells seeds, seedlings, and grafted trees:
Here are some other sources of seeds and seedlings:
BonsaiBoy of New York: http://www.bonsaiboy.com/catalog/product494.html
Nicky?s Seeds (UK): http://www.nickys-nursery.co.uk/seeds/pages/bonsai_acer.htm
Angelgrove?s: http://www.trees-seeds.com/seeds.htm and
As for forums, you might try one of the bonsai forums (such as the one
at the Bonsai Site and http://forum.bonsaitalk.com, listed above), but
I also like GardenWeb.com (http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/) for
this. There are quite a few forum threads there talking about
I hope the above information helps you. I found the majority of the
pages by doing two Google searches: one for ?propagating Japanese
maples? and one for ?Japanese maple seeds? (without the quotation
marks). If I?ve left something out or if you need more information,
please let me know before rating the answer and I?ll be happy to work
with you further.