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- Position: full sun or partial shade
- Soil: moist, well-drained, acidic soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: April to June
- Hardiness: fully hardy
A bushy, upright shrub with large mid-green leaves. From mid spring to midsummer, narrow goblet-shaped, fragrant flowers emerge from slender, dark burgundy buds. These open to slightly twisted petals which are burgundy on the outside and paler on the inside. A glorious deciduous magnolia that makes a lovely specimen for a small garden with acidic soil.
- Garden care: Requires minimal pruning. Remove any broken, diseased or crossing branches in midsumer. Plant in a sheltered spot, adding plenty of peat to the planting hole. Mulch in spring with manure and leafmould, especially on dry soils.
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Q:Slightly surprised to see this listed as a shade plant. I'm looking for a shrub for a north facing wall - already have camellias, rhodos, etc - would a magnolia thrive in such a bed?Asked on 9/3/2016 by mellors from St Albans
No, it will tolerate light shade with some sun in a south or west facing aspect, but not a north facing wall.
Sorry to disappoint you.Answered on 10/3/2016 by Anonymous from crocus
Q:I have a heavy clay soil and wondered if this magnolia would be ok in this type of soil?
Can I add anything to the clay soil to make the conditions for the magnolia better and if so, what?
MikeAsked on 12/3/2013 by Monks from Weston-super-Mare
This plant will grow quite happily on clay soils, provided it does not remain waterlogged for any length of time. If in doubt, the best thing to do would be to have a look around your neighbourhood and see if other people have managed to get a Magnolia established in their garden - most will be in bloom soon, so should be easy to spot. If you go ahead, then I would prepare the soil well by digging in lots of composted organic matter before you plant.Answered on 13/3/2013 by Helen from Crocus
Q:Will Magnolias survive really cold winters
Thank you for the information on Magnolias. However, we live 1000 ft above sea level in Mid-Wales and had temperatures in January 2010 down to Minus 16C. Can I really grow Magnolias in our situation? MargaretAsked on 14/4/2010 by DerekandMaggie Parker
A:Hello Margaret, The Magnolias we sell are fully hardy in most areas of the UK, however the best indication of what will grow in your area is to see what is already there. Alternatively if you really get blasted by wind or freezing temperatures and you want plants that usually won't tolerate these conditions, then perhaps you need to create a shelterbelt, which will produce a microclimate. I'm sorry not to be more help. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 15/4/2010 by Crocus Helpdesk
Hi, I have just taken delivery of a Magnolia (Star Magnolia). At the moment it is outside, in the bottom half of the box. I have just checked on your website and it says it is best to plant in April. What should I do with it in the mean time, and how do I care for it? Regards LauraAsked on 10/12/2009 by Laura Steed
A:Hello Laura, These are fully hardy so, although the optimum time for planting is spring or autumn, they can be planted out at any time of the year as long as the ground is not frozen. Therefore I would recommend you get it into the ground as soon as you can. I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 10/12/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
A:Hello Helen Thank you for your help - I will do as you suggest. LauraAnswered on 10/12/2009 by Laura Steed
Q:Specimen Ceanothus or another large bushy shrub....
Good afternoon, When I was first looking for a Ceanothus to replace the one we have in our front garden, I looked on your website, but you only had small ones. Our once lovely Ceanothus has been pruned out of all recognition again this year, as I planted it a bit too near our boundary when it was a baby. I know it may come back, but it is getting ridiculous as every time it grows back it has to be cut back again severely and then ooks a mess for most of the year. Have you got a nice, tall, bushy Ceanothus to replace it? I love my Ceanothus but perhaps if you don't have a big one, do you have another large, flowering shrub as an alternative? Hope you can help Regards MargaretAsked on 5/12/2009 by D DRAKETT
A:Hello Margaret, it is rare to find larger sized Ceanothus as they are usually quite short-lived and don't normally live longer than 6 - 8 years. We do have a selection of larger shrubs on our site like Hamamelis, Hydrangeas, Magnolias, Acer, Cornus, Cotinus, Philadelphus, Syringa and Viburnum, so you may find something of interest. They will be listed in this section. http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/ I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 8/12/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Magnolia tree pruning
Greetings, We have a very mature Magnolia tree which grows from five thick stems (6 inches across) from ground level. The canopy starts from 4 feet and it has grown now 20 feet. It flowers well and often has a second flowering in September. It is a well known tree in our rural area. Can I prune the tree down to six feet in height with the hope it will send up sapling growth and then I would be able to control the height from ground level as now owing to heath problems I am not allowed to use step ladders. In anticipation --much appreciation.Asked on 20/9/2009 by Dick Brown
A:Hello There, It can be risky, but many Magnolias will slowly recover from being cut back hard, although it will take a few years to regain its composure. If you have a spring flowering type, then the best time to tackle this is in mid summer after the flowers have faded. It is important that you do not prune them from late winter to summer as they are prone to 'bleeding'. I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 21/9/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Choosing the right plant
Hello, I'm trying to find a suitable plant for my back garden, its south facing and its a clay soil. We live in a new build house so are overlooked. The plants are for at the bottom of the garden away from the house so we want plants that will give us privacy. I have been looking on your website but can't choose what to have. I am thinking that a Magnolia would be nice but I am not sure which one to choose. As I have no other plants in my garden, this will be the focal point for a while! Any help would be appreciated. Thanks SamanthaAsked on 14/9/2009 by Samantha Walsh
A:Hello Samantha, I love all the Magnolias, but the ones with the cup-shaped flowers are my favourite. Magnolia Susan is relatively compact and has lovely dark coloured flowers - just click on the following link to go straight to it.
http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/magnolia-susan/classid.4143/ If your soil is not strongly acidic or alkaline (you can check this with a simple test kit which we sell) then I would check the information on our site and pick one of the Magnolias that you like the look of best. I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 14/9/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Pruning the dark flowering variety of Magnolia bush
Hello Crocus, I am making enquiries for a friend who has a Magnolia, as stated in the subject line its bush type with dark flowers and would like to know how to prune it. It's got a wide girth and started to spread over the path. I have not seen it myself and I only know of the tree with white/pinkish flowers. Hoping you can advise and thank you for time and trouble. Kind Regards, AlbertAsked on 17/8/2009 by Albert Holmes
A:Hello Albert, These plants really don't require any pruning, apart from removing wayward or crossing branches in late winter or early spring. I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 17/8/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Size of your Magnolias please?
I'm thinking of buying a magnolia from you and would like to know roughly how tall it would be when delivered. Your site provides the final size but not the size on delivery, only the pot size.Asked on 26/3/2007 by GallagherGH@aol.com
A:It will really depend on the variety as some are naturally more vigorous than others, but as a very general rule, the 3 litre Magnolias are approximately 25 - 30cm in height, while the 5 litre Magnolias will be roughly 50 - 80cm tall.Answered on 27/3/2007 by Crocus
Q:Why isn't my Magnolia flowering?
I planted a Magnolia stellata 4 yrs ago. It has flowered every year so far, but has not produced flower buds this year - only leaves. It is in a fairly sheltered location, with poor, sandy soil which has been well-improved with organic compost and mulch. Any ideas ?Asked on 18/4/2005 by Andy Bills
A:If the plant gets plenty of sun, then it sounds like the plant just needs a really good feed to help encourage new growth and flower buds. You do need to mulch the plant every year with organic matter, and a feed in spring with a slow-release general fertiliser will help too. A little extra potash (sulphate of potash) in spring will also help encourage flower formation, while in autumn you can feed with bonemeal to help encourage good root growth. Don't forget to keep the plant well watered too in dry weather.Answered on 19/4/2005 by Crocus
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