Southern Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora )

It’s getting harder and harder to single out plants in photos here. But I guess that is a good thing? This was planted about a year ago and it has doubled or more its height and filled out quite nicely.

I wish I had several more, but with city lots one must pick and choose plants.

This tree bloomed a little last year, more this year and in time should start to bloom through out the summer.

Southern magnolia should reach about 60′ tall and 30′ across. We are at the southern edge of where it will grow, so that may stunt its size some.

Some people remove the lower branches, some leave them on. I have not yet decided. When removing lower branches from a tree wait till they reach about 1″ in diameter. It is better for the trunk and overall growth.

Growth is slow when the tree is first planted and picks up as the tree settles in.

Tolerant of Houston summers and hard freezes.

It is an evergreen. And likes regular feedings of nitrogen and iron. I give everything iron about once a year year.

Watch for scale, orange oil helps. Better is to remove branches closer than a couple of feet to the ground. I’ve done that and had no scale problems since.

This tree grows in full sun to part shade, this one receives full sun all afternoon. It is drought tolerant but prefers a moist, slightly acidic soil. My alkaline clay seems to suit this one.

Once is it grows it will shade out everything around and underneath it.

Note: Did very well during the drought and heat of summer 2011, the younger ones are struggling but holding on

3 thoughts on “Southern Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora )

  1. Many magnolias lost their life last year in our drought….the underlying limestone in our area leached the water away and they couldn’t manage. It has been very sad! it is amazing to me that they get so darned huge but they are fabulous trees and their fragrance is like nothing else!

  2. For some reason my Magnolia tree died this year. It was about 6 years old. I plan on replacing it though. I love the big amazingly fragrant flowers!

  3. That is heartbreaking! I hate losing trees it takes so long to get them back to size.

    These are amazing trees, I couldn’t grow them in Boston so I’m really enjoying them down here.

    I’ve been studying plant evolution and was delighted to learn that magnolia trees go back ~100 million years ago.

    I think it is so cool we can grow a tree in our gardens that was around that far back in time.

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