The Field Maple is thought to be indigenous only
from Durham to the southern coast. In Scotland,
and probably Ireland also, it is only an introduced
plant that has become naturalised.
It is a small tree that attains a height of twenty
to forty feet, but is most familiar as a mere
bush. in young trees the pale brown bark is rough
and deeply fissured, though with age it becomes
The leaves range from two to four inches in diameter
and are always in pairs exactly opposite to each
other. They are kidney-shaped, but cut up into
five lobes which are more or less toothed.
The flowers are greenish-yellow, about a quarter
of an inch across, have narrow sepals and petals,
eight stamens, and a two-lobed ovary that develops
into the pair of broad-winged “keys”
about half an inch long, with their bases joined
together. Sometimes in late summer these “keys”
take on a colouring of deep crimson, afterwards
turning brown as they ripen.