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Susan J Tweit

@sandra, They do!

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hulicobra

I keep wondering why the west didn't end up with extensive Boxelder Maple forests, given they're practically the most tolerant and hardy maple from my perspective. I've seen them naturalize in hot valleys (where they've been introduced from nearby forests, 100+ years ago) with no more than 10 inches of rainfall, and still look fine. Yet Bigtooth Maple dominates Utah's maple forests. A big problem with this Maple is that it is very difficult to propagate asexually and some are susceptible to black leaf wilt. It's beyond me why it is being grafted onto a Sugar Maple, since its seeds are so easy to germinate & graft. I also think that the Bigtooth Maple's genetic potential have yet to be exploited to their maximum potential, maybe in 2,000 years there'll be the perfect Bigtooth maple that's equally hardy to a Boxelder.

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Susan J Tweit

@hulicobra, Boxelders haven't taken over areas of the West suitable to forests in part because they're not particularly salt-tolerant, and in part because the precipitation regimes of large areas don't suit them. They need moisture in summer, and may arid parts of the west get too little in summer for them to succeed. Also, they don't tolerate sandy or gravelly soils particularly well; they do better in silty loam or even clay. As for the issues with black leaf wilt in bigtooth maple in Utah's urban forests, I suspect that people overwater the trees just as they overwater their lawns...

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