Acer platanoides 'Crimson King'
Common name: 
Crimson King Norway Maple
A-ser plat-an-OY-dez
Sapindaceae, Aceraceae
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Purple-red leaf (maroon) for most of the growing season, reddish-orange in fall.  Flowers maroon-yellow and fruit also purplish.
  • Sun.  Probably the most vigorous of red-leafed forms  
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 4        Several red-leaved Norway maples seedlings arose in about 1937 in the Tips Brothers nursery in Limburg, Belgium.  One was taken to the Barbier nursery in France and introduced to the U.S. in 1947-48 by the Gulf Stream nursery of Wachapreague, Virginia.  It was registered as Acer plantioides f. Schwedleri and became known as 'Crimson King'.   Extremely similar cultivars are ‘Goldsworthy Purple’ and ‘Royal Red’.  ‘Faassen’s Black’ is also from a 1937 red-leaved seedling of Tips Brothers and introduced to the U.S. about 1954.  Its foliage has a more bronzy-brown tinge than ‘Crimson King’ and a more open form, as if pruned. (Jacobson, 1996, p. 41, 43).  ‘Faassen’s Black’ is rare in the U.S. but a common red-leafed form in Europe.  ‘Deborah’ is a more recent seedling of ‘Schwedleri’, and its leaves also emerge reddish, but in contrast to ‘Crimson King’, turn to a bronzy green during the summer. Leaf color comparison of ‘Crimson King’, ‘Deborah’, and species (green) type.
  • Oregon State Univ. campus: east side of McNary parking lot (11th St. & Jefferson).
Click image to enlarge
  • flower cluster, spring

    flower cluster, spring

  • leaves, after flowering

    leaves, after flowering

  • plant habit, spring comparison

    plant habit, spring comparison

  • plant habit, summer

    plant habit, summer

  • leaf, summer

    leaf, summer

  • fruit, summer

    fruit, summer

  • leaves, fall

    leaves, fall