box elder(redirected from box elders)
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box elder:see maplemaple,
common name for the genus Acer of the Aceraceae, a family of deciduous trees and shrubs of the Northern Hemisphere, found mainly in temperate regions and on tropical mountain slopes. Acer, the principal genus, includes the many maples and the box elder.
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30-60 ft (10-20m) tree with smooth green twigs and leaves that resemble poison ivy, but leaves are opposite each other, not alternating. Has maple-tree-type winged seed keys but thinner and longer than maple. Keys can be eaten. Sap boiled down for sugar. Very popular source of sugar. The inner bark can be eaten raw, boiled, roasted or dried and pounded into a powder with fiber sifted out. Tea made from inner bark can induce vomiting. Young leaves are edible and somewhat sweet, but have little nutrition.