Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’: Japanese Garden Star

Acer Palmatum Bloodgood
“Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’ ” by F. D. Richards is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’
Common name : Japanese Maple



Plant Type

Small to medium sized tree.

Soil Type

Moist, fertile, well drained.

read more on soil type here →


Sun or partial shade.

Eventual Size

Height: up to 8 m (26ft). Width: up to 5m (16ft).


Hardy down to -10°C to -15°C (14°F to 5°F)

read more on plant hardiness here

Acer palmatums are tremendous garden plants, probably amongst the best loved of ornamental garden trees.

Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’, a round-headed, deciduous tree or shrub growing to 8m high x 5m wide, is undoubtedly one of the best. Above, it is pictured in a border in early spring with a conifer with contrasting bright green foliage.

It has deeply cut, 5 lobed, dark red to purple leaves about 5-20cm (2 to 8 inches) long which turn bright red in autumn. Its tiny flowers are insignificant but it also has interesting red samara (winged) fruit.

Where summers are hot, ‘Bloodgood’ prefers shade or partial shade as otherwise it may suffer leaf scorch.

It tolerates most soils but prefers those that are moist, fertile and well drained. It is hardy down to -15 degrees C and is moderately drought and salt tolerant.

Grown for its striking summer and autumn foliage colour, Acer Palmatum Bloodgood can be a good design focal point, a feature plant or, as you can see in the photograph above, an excellent contrast to green foliage plants in a border.

You could very well consider teaming it with Acanthus mollis, since both have similar preferences for soil and partial shade.

Acer palmatum, variety bloodgood, leaves

This tremendously versatile tree can also be grown in containers, trained as a standard or even bonsaied.

Maintenance of Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’

Acers of this species only need pruning to maintain a healthy framework. This is done by removing wayward or crossing stems.

Pruning should be carried out when the tree is dormant in late autumn or winter.

A general purpose fertiliser should be applied annually in spring and and the roots well mulched.

‘Bloodgood’ should be well watered in its first year to allow its roots to establish.

Pests and diseases

It is best to plant Acers out of cold winds, as these can cause leaf scorch.


Can be prone to aphids, mites and scale insects.

Graft in winter, bud in late summer.

Can also be propagated by sowing seed in containers or outdoor in situ, though resulting plants are unlikely to come true to the cultivar.

Buy Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’

Check out the latest prices:

US Buyers

Bloodgood Japanese Maple
Bloodgood Japanese Maple – $63.95


Beautiful Bloodgood Japanese Maple Landscaper’s Favorite Small, Graceful Tree. Highly Adaptable and versatile, requires minimal care. With dramatic colour, the Bloodgood Japanese Maple Tree (Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’) can bring a peaceful yet striking feeling to your landscape.

UK Buyers

Acer palmatum 'Bloodgood

 out of stock
as of July 15, 2024 4:16 pm

Japanese Maples are prized for their spectacular foliage! Acer palmatum 'Bloodgood' is one of the best producing bright pink new foliage in spring that darkens to deep purple by early summer.

Also, try Gardening Express for good value specimens.

But remember to compare like with like – make sure you’re comparing plants of approximately the same size. There is a big difference in price between advanced sized ornamental trees and small saplings.


Brickell C (ed), 1998, the Royal Horticultural Society A to Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants Dorling Kindersley, London.

Love Dahlias?I've written the book on them

Check out my comprehensive step by step guide, with plain language explanations and ultra-useful images and illustrations. This is for you if you love dahlias and want to the best out of the dahlias you grow.