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06 October 2015

Planting Japanese Maple

Japanese Maples are incredibly beautiful plants. They are large shrubs native to Japan, and are known for their startlingly beautiful leaves. Their incredible colours add to the garden they’re in, setting it alight with deep reds and purples during autumn. They’re also relatively overlooked despite being a beautiful addition to any Australian garden.

The best thing about Japanese Maple shrubs is that they’re hardy and can survive through diverse weather conditions, so they’re perfect for the climates of the southern half of Australia. They also grow very slowly over an extended period of time, which allows you to care for the tree and grow it into a real corner piece for your garden.

In the wilderness, maple shrubs are found at the edges of woodlands, where they are protected from harsh winds and receive smatterings of light. They’re great for keeping close to the home but also offer a wonderful feature plant that ties together the flow of your garden. In keeping with the famous Japanese aesthetic, maple shrubs look best when they are pruned to shape them into flowing, asymmetrical shapes, which is how they were first cultivated in Japan. They’re since become one of the most recognizable plants of the Japanese garden, but they’re also simple to grow in Australia. Let’s have a look how.

Find a position.

Japanese maple shrubs are great nearby a house, but also look beautiful in the centre of a garden. Make sure they have intermittent shade throughout the day. The Japanese maple tree looks beautiful, so it’s also worth putting it somewhere that you can clearly see it.

Prepare the soil and plant the shrub.

Dig a large hole and refill it with fertilized soil. Tease the dirt off the rootball of your Japanese maple tree and plant it so that all the roots are covered. Put mulch over the top of the soil, leaving about ten centimeters around the base of the tree.


Prune the tree regularly to prevent too many new branches developing. You want to try to achieve a kind of natural flowing look. The Japanese maple sometime gets bugs and caterpillars on its leaves. Look out for these are remove them when possible. You might also need to use an insecticide if the insects are eating through the leaves.

The Japanese maple is a great plant and is perfect for an Australian garden. It will last a lifetime and will slowly grow and change, developing into a plant with wonder amounts of character and colour. If you need any help with your gardening, give Taskforce a call on 13TASK. They can help you source plants and establish a thriving garden.