Where Are There Holes in My Japanese Maple Leaves?

Japanese maples are beautiful trees that can add a lot to your landscaping. However, sometimes you may notice holes in the leaves of your Japanese maple, which may be more than just an aesthetic issue.

If not taken care of properly, these holes could lead to bigger problems for your tree and leave you with some difficult decisions on what to do next.

In this article, we will discuss the causes and treatments for this problem so you know what to do if this happens.

Why Are There Holes in My Japanese Maple Leaves?

There are holes in your Japanese maple leaves because a leaf-eating pest has moved in. The two most common pests that eat Japanese maple are scale and bagworm moths, which will both leave behind damage to your tree if not treated properly right away.

Other than that, there’s a chance your Japanese maple tree has been infected with leaf spot disease, which begins as tiny spots and progresses to bigger marks that spread.

How to Prevent Holes in Japanese Maple Leaves?

You can prevent these holes from appearing on your leaves by treating the area with a pesticide, which will take care of both scale and bagworm moths.

My favorite product to use is neem oil (Amazon link), which is an organic pesticide and fungicide made from the neem tree. Simply spray all affected plants with neem oil – making sure that all areas all covered.

This neem oil will also work well for any leaf spot. You should start by removing seriously affected leaves, and discarding them away from any other plants. Then, use neem oil on the leaves to get rid of any remaining fungal spores.

Holes in Japanese Maple Tree Leaves FAQ

Japanese maples aren’t the easiest of trees to look after. As such, I will now answer some of the most common questions I get asked about their leaves.

Will the holes in my Japanese maple leaves heal themselves?

No, this is not something that your tree will naturally repair. The leaves will keep their holes, but you can treat the tree to help it grow new leaves that are healthier.

What should I do if I find holes in my Japanese maple leaves?

Take time to find out what is causing the issue. The first thing to do is look for signs of pests, such as scale. If you find these, it is time to treat the tree with a pesticide of your choice and make sure to re-treat every few weeks until you don’t see any more signs of pests on the leaves.

Can I prune my Japanese maple to make the leaves look better?

Yes, you should always prune any damaged branches on your tree. This will improve its health and help them grow new leaves that are healthy again. Make sure to use sterilized shears that are sharp.


In conclusion, if your Japanese maple leaves have holes in them, you need to find out what is causing the issue. By doing this and treating the tree correctly, you will notice that these issues don’t happen again.

In most cases, pesticide or neem oil will get rid of the pests and fix the issue. I hope this article was helpful. Please do let me know if the tips in this article helped your tree.

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