Surprising Maple Tree

I have no idea how many times I’ve walked the trail along the river at Totem Park over the past several years. I’m sure it’s probably well over one hundred, but for some reason it wasn’t until one such walk earlier this year that I noticed a maple tree growing there. Introduced maples are fairly common around town as landscaping trees, but the maple native to our region does not seem to occur along the road system. The one I saw had clearly been there for some time (probably several years), as it was 4 or 5 feet tall while growing in a fairly shady (by alder) location. It is probably one of the species used for landscaping, and may have grown from seed.

I think it’s probably good to get these reminders that even in some of the most well-traveled places, there are things I’ve yet to notice and I would do well to continue practicing the skill of paying attention.


  • What other obvious things am I missing in areas I frequent?
  • How long as this maple been there?
  • How did the seed get there? (it’s above where flood waters would carry it, and quite some distance from any source tree)

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