Freeman maples are relatively trouble-free in the landscape, and Autumn Fantasy is no exception. You may notice some small red galls on the leaves caused by insect feeding; this is purely cosmetic and should not be treated.
All Maples are susceptible to Verticillium Wilt. If you observe branch death (flagging) in summer during a drought, contact a local arborist to inspect the tree. There is no cure for Verticillium Wilt, but infected trees can be preserved through regular watering and minimizing other stresses. The best solution is to plant resistant species. If you know your area has Verticillium Wilt, stay away from Maples.
Tar Spot (Rhystima spp.) is a frequent occurrence on Norway, Silver, and Freeman maples in Wisconsin. These black spots form on the leaves in late summer/early fall and may cause premature leaf drop. This is a purely cosmetic issue and will not affect the health of the tree long-term. We do not recommend using a fungicide to treat this disease. If you feel that Tar Spot is problematic in your landscape, you should make sure you remove all leaves after leaf drop and burn them or dispose of them off-site. This will prevent old leaves from re-infecting the tree next year.