USA Official State Tree of Wisconsin

Sugar Maple

(Acer saccharum)
Adopted on June 4, 1949.


A favorite Tree was first selected by a vote of Wisconsin school children in 1893. The maple tree, Acer saccharum, won, followed by oak, pine and elm. Another vote was conducted in 1948 among school children by the Youth Centennial Committee. In that election, the sugar maple again received the most votes, followed by white pine and birch. The 1949 Legislature, in spite of efforts by white pine advocates, named the sugar maple the official state tree by enacting Chapter 218, Laws of 1949, which created Section 1.10 of the statutes.


Wisconsin Legislature
1.10 State song, state ballad, state waltz, state dance, and state symbols.
(3) The Wisconsin state symbols are as follows:
(c) The sugar maple (acer saccharum) is the state tree.


Sugar maple sometimes called hard maple or rock maple, is one of the largest and more important of the hardwoods. It grows on approximately 12.5 million hectares (31 million acres) or 9 percent of the hardwood land and has a net volume of about 130 million m3 (26 billion fbm) or 6 percent of the hardwood sawtimber volume in the United States. The greatest commercial volumes are presently in Michigan, New York, Maine, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania (53). In most regions, both the saw timber and growing stock volumes are increasing, with increased production of saw logs, pulpwood, and more recently, firewood.

  • Leaf: Opposite, simple and palmately veined, 3 to 6 inches long, 5 lobed with entire margin; green above, paler below.
  • Flower: Yellow to green, small, clustered, hanging from a long (1 to 3 inch) stem, appearing with the leaves.
  • Fruit: Two-winged horseshoe-shaped samaras about 1 inch long, appearing in clusters, brown when mature in Autumn.
  • Twig: Brown, slender and shiny with lighter lenticels, terminal buds brown and very sharp pointed.
  • Bark: Variable, but generally grayish brown, on older trees may be furrowed, with long, thick irregular curling outward ridges.
  • Form: Medium to tall tree (to 100 feet) with very dense elliptical crown.


Taxonomic Hierarchy
Kingdom Plantae -- Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta -- Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass Rosidae –
Order Sapindales –
Family Aceraceae – Maple family
Genus Acer L. – maple
Species Acer saccharum Marsh. – sugar maple


Dendrology at Virginia Tech
U.S. Department of Agriculture