Striped maple

Hardwoods > Sapindaceae > Acer > pensylvanicum

Striped maple (Acer pensylvanicum)
Striped maple (Acer pensylvanicum)

Common Name(s): Striped maple

Scientific Name: Acer pensylvanicum

Distribution: Eastern North America

Tree Size: 20-30 ft (6-10 m) tall,

                 8 in (.25 m) trunk diameter

Average Dried Weight: 32.0 lbs/ft3 (515  kg/m3)

Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .44, .51

Janka Hardness: 770 lbf (3,430 N)*

*Estimated hardness based on specific gravity

Modulus of Rupture: No data available*

Elastic Modulus: No data available*

Crushing Strength: No data available*

*Values most likely similar to those of silver maple

Shrinkage: Radial: 3.2%, Tangential: 8.6%,

                  Volumetric: 12.3%, T/R Ratio: 2.7

Color/Appearance: Unlike most other hardwoods, the sapwood of maple lumber is most commonly used rather than its heartwood. Sapwood color ranges from almost white, to a light golden or reddish brown, while the heartwood is a darker reddish brown. Striped maple can also be seen with curly or quilted grain patterns.

Grain/Texture: Grain is generally straight, but may be wavy. Has a fine, even texture. The growth rings tend to be lighter and less distinct in soft maples than in hard maple.

Rot Resistance: Rated as non-durable to perishable in regard to decay resistance.

Workability: Fairly easy to work with both hand and machine tools, though maple has a tendency to burn when being machined with high-speed cutters such as in a router. Turns, glues, and finishes well, though blotches can occur when staining, and a pre-conditioner, gel stain, or toner may be necessary to get an even color.

Odor: No characteristic odor.

Allergies/Toxicity: Striped maple, along with other maples in the Acer genus have been reported to cause skin irritation, runny nose, and asthma-like respiratory effects. See the articles Wood Allergies and Toxicity and Wood Dust Safety for more information.

Pricing/Availability: Should be very moderately priced, though figured pieces such as curly or quilted grain patterns are likely to be much more expensive.

Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Common Uses: Veneer, paper (pulpwood), boxes, crates/pallets, musical instruments, turned objects, and other small specialty wood items.

Comments: Striped maple is so called because of its distinct green striped bark. It is much smaller than most other maple species, and with trunk diameters measured in inches, rather than feet, it is seldom used for lumber.

Striped maple is considered to be in the grouping of soft maples, and its wood is lighter, softer, and weaker than that of hard maple. For more information, please see the article on the Differences Between Hard Maple and Soft Maple.

Images: Drag the slider up/down to toggle between raw and finished wood.

Striped maple (Acer pensylvanicum)

Striped Maple (foliage illustration)

Identification: See the article on Hardwood Anatomy for definitions of endgrain features.

Striped maple (endgrain 10x)
Striped maple (endgrain 10x)
Striped maple (endgrain 1x)
Striped maple (endgrain 1x)

Porosity: diffuse porous

Arrangement: solitary and radial multiples

Vessels: small to medium; moderately numerous

Parenchyma: banded (marginal)

Rays: narrow to medium, normal spacing

Lookalikes/Substitutes: Striped maple is more or less indistinguishable from other soft maples such as red maple (Acer rubrum), however, it can usually be separated from hard maple (A. saccharum) not only on the basis of weight, but also ray width. Striped maple tends to have more uniform medium-width rays, while hard maple has a greater range of wide and narrow rays.

Notes: None.

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what is the fall color of striped maple?


Turns yellowish earlier than most other trees. Leaves look wilty and patchy.