Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood: All the Differences

Ralph Astley is a retired gardener from Philadelphia who specializes in outdoor plants and trees. With years of hands-on experience, Ralph not only cares for a diverse range of outdoor flora but also shares his extensive knowledge through well-written articles and social media posts. A trusted authority in arboriculture, he's committed to helping the community grow healthier, more robust gardens.
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Comparing Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood: Here are the detailed differences and similarities so you know which is the one for you!

Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood 1

Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood – this is the discussion of the hour and now it’s time to delve into the vibrant world of these cultivars.

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Japanese Maple Fireglow (Acer palmatum ‘Fireglow’)


Japanese Maple Fireglow is a captivating cultivar known for its fiery crimson spring foliage that transitions to deep purplish-red in summer. Its enchanting color palette and manageable size make Fireglow a sought-after variety.

  • Origin: Fireglow, scientifically known as Acer palmatum ‘Fireglow,’ traces its origins to Japan and Korea.
  • Appearance: The Fireglow boasts leaves that emerge in spring with a fiery crimson hue reminiscent of smoldering embers. As summer unfolds, the leaves transition to a deep purplish-red, maintaining an enchanting aura in your landscape.
  • Size: Generally, Fireglow attains a moderate size, growing to around 10 feet tall and wide, making it well-suited for various garden settings.
  • Growth Habit: This maple flaunts a compact and rounded growth habit, creating a mesmerizing focal point whether placed in garden beds or decorative pots.
  • Sun and Soil: Fireglow Japanese maple thrives in partial shade to filtered sunlight. A well-draining, slightly acidic soil provides the ideal foundation for its radiant presence.
  • Care: With its moderate growth rate, Fireglow demands minimal pruning to maintain its captivating form. Regular watering and mulching contribute to its overall health.

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Bloodgood Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’)

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Bloodgood Japanese Maple is another striking cultivar cherished for its deep burgundy leaves that maintain their rich color throughout the summer months. This variety’s commanding presence, combined with its captivating foliage, makes Bloodgood a popular choice for creating an atmosphere of sophistication. 

  • Origin: Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’ finds its roots in Japan, captivating hearts around the world.
  • Appearance: The Bloodgood variety showcases deep burgundy leaves from spring, creating a striking contrast against the green backdrop. Throughout summer, the leaves retain their rich color, setting your landscape aglow.
  • Size: Slightly larger than Fireglow, Bloodgood typically reaches heights of 15 feet and spreads around 12 feet wide, establishing a more expansive presence.
  • Growth Habit: Bloodgood Japanese maple displays an upright and vase-like growth habit, emanating an air of sophistication in any garden arrangement.
  • Sun and Soil: Similar to Fireglow, Bloodgood thrives in partial shade to filtered sunlight. Well-draining soil, enriched with organic matter, nurtures its vibrant foliage.
  • Care: Regular watering and mulching are essential to maintain Bloodgood’s vitality. Minimal pruning is advised to enhance its natural form, allowing its beauty to shine unhindered.

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Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood: Similarities


Before we get into Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood, here are the similarities between the two. 

  1. Species: Both Fireglow and Bloodgood are cultivars of the Japanese maple species (Acer palmatum).
  2. Leaf Shape: Both varieties have the characteristic delicate and finely lobed leaves that are typical of Japanese maples.
  3. Sunlight: Both Fireglow and Bloodgood thrive in partial shade to filtered sunlight, making them suitable for similar light conditions in gardens.
  4. Soil Requirements: Both varieties prefer well-draining soil with slightly acidic characteristics, contributing to their healthy growth and vibrant foliage.

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Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood – Differences

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1. Leaf Color

  • Fireglow: Exhibits fiery crimson spring foliage that transitions to deep purplish-red in summer, creating a smoldering effect.
  • Bloodgood: Features deep burgundy leaves from spring, providing a rich and dramatic contrast against the green backdrop.

2. Leaf Texture

  • Fireglow: The leaves of Fireglow tend to be slightly smaller and more delicate, adding to its overall charming appearance.
  • Bloodgood: Bloodgood’s leaves are slightly larger and have a thicker texture, contributing to its lush and substantial foliage.

3. Size

  • Fireglow: Typically reaches a moderate size of around 10 feet in height and width, making it suitable for various garden settings.
  • Bloodgood: Tends to be larger, growing to heights of about 15 feet with a spread of approximately 12 feet, offering a more expansive presence.

4. Growth Habit

  • Fireglow: Showcases a compact and rounded growth habit, adding a charming focal point to any home.
  • Bloodgood: Displays an upright and vase-like growth habit that captivates everyone from afar.

5. Growing Zones

  • Fireglow: Thrives in USDA Hardiness Zones 5 to 9, suitable for temperate climates.
  • Bloodgood: Adapts well to USDA Hardiness Zones 5 to 8, making it suitable for a range of climates. You can grow it in the mildly low temperatures of USDA Zone 9 with extra care.

6. Container Gardening

  • Fireglow: Due to its compact size and rounded growth habit, Fireglow is an excellent choice for container gardening, adding a burst of color to patios and decks.
  • Bloodgood: Bloodgood’s larger size and upright growth habit might make it a bit more challenging to maintain in containers, but it can still be managed with proper care.

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7. Fall Color Variations

  • Fireglow: During the fall, Fireglow’s leaves may transition to shades of orange and yellow before dropping, offering a different array of autumnal colors.
  • Bloodgood: Bloodgood’s fall foliage can sometimes retain more of its deep burgundy hue, contributing to a distinct fall appearance.

8. Uses

  • Fireglow: Ideal for smaller landscapes, containers, and garden beds where its compact size and rounded form can be appreciated.
  • Bloodgood: Suited for larger landscapes, focal points, and areas where its taller stature and striking foliage can command attention.

9. Associations and Symbolism

  • Fireglow Japanese Maple: The fiery crimson and purplish-red leaves of Fireglow evoke feelings of warmth and vibrancy, making it an excellent choice for creating inviting and cozy garden spaces.
  • Bloodgood Japanese Maple: The deep burgundy foliage of Bloodgood conveys a sense of opulence and luxury, making it a symbol of abundance and prosperity in garden design.

Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood – FAQs

1. Are Japanese Maples Susceptible to Any Specific Pests or Diseases?

While generally resilient, both Fireglow and Bloodgood can be vulnerable to common pests like aphids and diseases like powdery mildew. Regular monitoring and proper care can help prevent issues.

2. Japanese Maple Fireglow vs Bloodgood for Bonsai Cultivation

Yes, both varieties are suitable for bonsai cultivation due to their compact growth habits. Fireglow’s rounded form and Bloodgood’s upright habit can be shaped effectively for bonsai designs.

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3. Can I Grow Japanese Maple Fireglow and Bloodgood in the Same Garden?

Yes, you can certainly grow Japanese Maple Fireglow and Bloodgood in the same garden. Their distinct leaf colors and growth habits can complement each other, adding depth and variety to your landscape.

However, ensure they are planted with adequate spacing to allow for their mature sizes and consider their sunlight and soil preferences to create a harmonious planting arrangement.

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