Leaves are opposite simple.
The black maple is very similar to the sugar maple and is often mistaken for it.
The leaves are three to five lobes, but with the lobes sharp pointed and not so deeply cut as the sugar maple. The leaves are dull green above and yellow-green below with soft hairs, especially along the yellow veins. The margins of the leaves droop, making them appear somewhat wilted.
The twigs are stout, light to dark gray, smooth and opposite on the stems. The fruit is a pair of winged seeds, ripening in autumn. The bark is very similar to the sugar maple, except that it is usually darker.
This key was developed by "bt" in June 1982. It was put into HTML format by Stephen Ostermiller in July 1997. Copies of the entire guide in zip format that may be taken to camp on a laptop are available to those who write.