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Acer interius - Britton.                
                 
Common Name Box Elder
Family Aceraceae
Synonyms A. negundo interius. (Britt.)Sarg. Negundo aceroides
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Riversides[204].
Range Northern N. America - Kansas, Nebraska and the Rocky Mountains.
Edibility Rating  
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

Summary       

Physical Characteristics       
 icon of manicon of lolypop
Acer interius is a deciduous Tree growing to 20 m (65ft 7in). It is in flower in April. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required)The plant is not self-fertile.


USDA hardiness zone : Coming soon


Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Acer interius Box Elder


Acer interius Box Elder
   
Habitats       
Woodland Garden Canopy;
Edible Uses                                         
Edible Parts: Sap.
Edible Uses: Sweetener.

The sap contains a certain amount of sugar and can either be used as a drink, or can be concentrated into a syrup by boiling off the water[105, 161, 177]. The syrup is used as a sweetener on many foods. The concentration of sugar is considerably lower than in the sugar maples (A. saccharum). The tree trunk is tapped in the early spring, the sap flowing better on warm sunny days following a frost. The best sap production comes from cold-winter areas with continental climates.
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.



None known
Other Uses
Preservative.

The leaves are packed around apples, rootcrops etc to help preserve them[18, 20]. The wood is soft and weak, weighing about 27lb per cubic foot[235].
Cultivation details                                         
We have very little information on this species, though judging by its native range it should be hardy in many parts of Britain. It is closely related to A. negundo and, like that species, is probably dioecious[235]. Some authorities see this plant as no more than a sub-species of A. negundo[257]. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus. Of easy cultivation, it prefers a good moist well-drained soil[11], preferring a sunny position but tolerating some shade[11, 200]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Chlorosis can sometimes develop as a result of iron deficiency when the plants are grown in alkaline soils, but in general maples are not fussy as to soil pH. Most maples are bad companion plants, inhibiting the growth of nearby plants[18, 20].
                                                                                 
Propagation                                         
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame, it usually germinates in the following spring. Pre-soak stored seed for 24 hours and then stratify for 2 - 4 months at 1 - 8°c. It can be slow to germinate. The seed can be harvested 'green' (when it has fully developed but before it has dried and produced any germination inhibitors) and sown immediately. It should germinate in late winter. If the seed is harvested too soon it will produce very weak plants or no plants at all[80, 113]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on until they are 20cm or more tall before planting them out in their permanent positions. Layering, which takes about 12 months, is successful with most species in this genus. Cuttings of young shoots in June or July. The cuttings should have 2 - 3 pairs of leaves, plus one pair of buds at the base. Remove a very thin slice of bark at the base of the cutting, rooting is improved if a rooting hormone is used. The rooted cuttings must show new growth during the summer before being potted up otherwise they are unlikely to survive the winter. The cuttings of this species usually root easily. Budding onto A. negundo in early summer usually works well. The bud should develop a small shoot in the summer otherwise it is unlikely to survive the winter.
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Expert comment                                         
 
      
Author                                         
Britton.
                                                                                 
Botanical References                                         
204235
                                                                                 
Links / References                                         

[11]Bean. W. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
[18]Philbrick H. and Gregg R. B. Companion Plants.
Details of beneficial and antagonistic relationships between neighbouring plants.
[20]Riotte. L. Companion Planting for Successful Gardening.
Fairly good.
[80]McMillan-Browse. P. Hardy Woody Plants from Seed.
Does not deal with many species but it is very comprehensive on those that it does cover. Not for casual reading.
[105]Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World.
The most comprehensive guide to edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
[113]Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W. The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation.
A very detailed book on propagating trees. Not for the casual reader.
[161]Yanovsky. E. Food Plants of the N. American Indians. Publication no. 237.
A comprehensive but very terse guide. Not for the casual reader.
[177]Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption.
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
[200]Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
[204]Livingstone. B. Flora of Canada
In 4 volumes, it does not deal with plant uses but gives descriptions and habitats.
[235]Britton. N. L. Brown. A. An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada
Reprint of a 1913 Flora, but still a very useful book.
[257]Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany
Very comprehensive but terse guide to the native uses of plants. Excellent bibliography, fully referenced to each plant, giving a pathway to further information. Not for the casual reader.

Readers comment                                         
 
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