Aciri Occhiu

This post is also available in: Italiano (Italian)

Acer pseudoplatanus (Aceraceae)

On the slopes of Mount Soro, in the Nebrodi mountain range, at an altitude of 5.872 ft, there’s a huge Sycamore maple, some 500 years old. It’s regarded as one of the largest Sycamore maples in Italy and it can be found within a coppice of beech trees. This wondrous specimen is locally known as “Acerone”.

The stem is covered with moss and lichens, appearing gnarled and irregular, especially in the initial section, due to the presence of various swellings (bacterial hyperplasia). A large cavity opens up in the basal part of the trunk, on the side of the tree facing north-west. In the upper part, it currently shows has a thick incision of about 16 ft, probably caused by a lightning strike. Some epicormic branches are visible on the stem.

At about 26 ft from the ground, the first branches grow parallel to it, while at 46 ft of height the trunk has lost its consistency, due to two almost vertical branches.
The beautiful “Acerone” grows on land owned by the Sicilian Region State Forestry Company.

How to get there:

Take the S.S. 289 road to Cesarò, then follow the signs from Portella Female Morta or Miraglia, to Portella Calacudera; in the latter location, the asphalted road reaches its end, and you’ll have to continue on foot to reach the magnificent tree.

Sycamore maple botanical sheet:

This species is widespread mainly in central Europe, and in Italy, it grows throughout the peninsula but in Sardinia. In many regions, this species grows isolated, in small groups or mesophilic mixed woods, along with other broad-leaved trees. At lower altitudes, it tends to grow with deciduous oaks, English oaks, Turkey oaks, hornbeams, chestnuts, and greater ashes; On the hills and in the mountains, it is often mixed with ashes, beeches, silver firs and spruce.
It’s a sciaphilous tree, that prefers fresh and deep soils, while it appears quite sensitive to water stagnation and dryness.

Its wood is always in great demand for the production of furniture, flooring and fine cabinets.
In Slovenia, its priceless marbled texture makes it the perfect kind of wood for musical instruments manufacture.

This species has a high suckling capacity, when coppiced and can thus colonize new environments in a very short time.

Photo source:

This post is also available in: Italiano (Italian)


71023 Portella Calacudera(ME)

Questo sito utilizza cookie tecnici e di profilazione per fornirti una esperienza di navigazione personalizzata