Japanese Maple, Acer palmatum have been cultivated in Japan and temperate regions of the world for centuries. Acers are a popular choice for Bonsai enthusiasts and Japanese themed gardens. This deciduous tree species is part of the Sapindaceae family. The species name Acer palmatum comes from the hand-like shape of its leaves. The red-leafed cultivars are the most popular, followed by cascading green shrubs with deeply dissected leaves. Acers come in a range of sizes from small flat growing shrubs to small trees with domed-like shapes, all have vibrant autumn colours. Grow in full sun to partial shade and moist, well-draining soil on the acid side. Acer palmatum is hardy across most of Europe and the UK, it can cope with a minimum temperature of around minus 20 degrees Celsius.