An explosion of helicopters

maple samarsI doubt anyone knows how or why this happens: all the silver and red maples in the region are laden with so much fruit it is hard to pick out any leaves. How can this phenomenon be coordinated among all the trees?

One client called yesterday and asked how to spell the word ‘schizocarp.’ I had always referred to the maple fruit as samaras, but I think she was technically correct, despite what you might read in Wikipedia.  Anyway, expect big messes to clean up if you own a soft maple, followed by a very thin-looking crown until later in the season.