Southern Magnolia

The Southern Magnolia’s leaves are evergreen with large, fragrant flowers and fruit that is a reddish brown bur. This tree is largely used as an ornamental; its wood can be used for baskets and crates. It is found in moist soils and reaches 60 to 80 feet in height with a trunk up to 5 feet in diameter.

Magnolia grandiflora, commonly known as the southern magnolia or bull bay, is native to the southeastern United States and is a very popular ornamental tree throughout the southeastern United States and California. It is often planted in university campuses. Reaching 90 ft in height, it is a large striking evergreen tree with attractive large dark green leaves and large white fragrant flowers. Exceptionally large trees recorded include a 114 ft high specimen from the Chickasawhay District, De Soto National Forest in Mississippi which measured 17 feet 8 inches in circumference at breast height, and a 99 ft tall tree from Baton Rouge in Louisiana which reached 18 feet in circumference at breast height.

The leaves are simple 5–8 in long and 2–5 in broad. They are dark green, stiff, heavy and leathery, often scurfy underneath with yellow-brown pubescence and tend to fall year round. The large, showy, lemon citronella-scented flowers are white, up to 12 in across and fragrant, with 6–12 petals with a waxy texture, emerging from the tips of twigs on mature trees in late spring. Flowering is followed by the rose-colored fruit, ovoid and 3–4 in long and 1.5–2 in wide.
Southern Magnolia

Southern Magnolia Leaf
Magnolia grandiflora can produce seed by 10 years of age, although peak seed production is achieved closer to 25 years of age. Around 50% of seed can germinate, and is spread by birds and mammals. Squirrels, opossums, quail, and turkey are known to eat the seeds.

The timber is hard and heavy, and has been used commercially to make furniture, boxes, pallets, venetian blinds, sashes, doors and used as veneers. Southern magnolia has yellowish-white sapwood and light to dark brown heartwood that is tinted yellow or green.

Symbolic of the American South, Magnolia grandiflora is the state tree of Mississippi, and the state flower of Mississippi and Louisiana. The flower was also used as an emblem of the Confederate army in the US civil war.

Southern Magnolia Cone Southern Magnolia Seeds


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