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All About Japanese Magnolias
Nothing says spring is here like a blooming Japanese magnolia tree. Their large, fuzzy, fat buds erupt into huge tulip-shaped blooms in early spring. Japanese Magnolia flowers range in color from darkest pink to strawberry ice cream to creamy and white.
Most Japanese magnolias are multi-stemmed, but some are trained as a single trunk also known as standard trees. Their smooth, gray bark is appealing even during the winter months. They are deciduous trees and will drop their leaves in autumn, unlike southern magnolias, which are evergreen.
Bloom time is usually March but will vary slightly depending on your location. They bloom just before leaves begin to appear.
Also called saucer magnolias, these trees are hybrids of Yulan and Lily magnolias (Magnolia denudata and Magnolia liliiflora). Cultivars range in color and size, from miniature 8-foot varieties to those that are almost big enough to count as shade trees, 25 feet tall and spreading as wide.
How to Use Japanese Magnolias in the Landscape
Big showy flowers draw attention, and that’s exactly what pink Japanese magnolias do. They are perfect to use as statement or specimen trees in the landscape and provide a beautiful tree all year long, even when not in bloom.
Several Japanese magnolias can provide a sheltered spot to create a perennial garden of shade-loving plants. Line a driveway with Japanese magnolias to create a formal but flowery approach to your home in spring and a tree-lined drive in summer.
Smaller varieties make an excellent anchor to a perennial flower garden and bring color before other plants are awake in spring.
How to Plant Japanese Magnolias
Plant your new Japanese magnolia in a spot where it will have room to grow. Remember that it will be larger at maturity than it is now.
Sunny or partially sunny spots work best. A place with good morning sun and dappled shade in the afternoon is ideal. The site should have good drainage.
Mulching around the base is vital to protecting the soil, providing organic matter, and keeping the lawnmower and string trimmer well away from the trunks. Japanese magnolias are easily injured by lawn care equipment.
How Fast Do Japanese Magnolia Trees Grow?
While the actual value will vary from tree to tree, Japanese magnolia trees grow at a moderate rate, which means about 1 to 2 feet over the course of each growing season. Most magnolia trees will take about 10 years to mature to adulthood.
How Tall Does a Japanese Magnolia Tree Get?
The height of a Japanese magnolia varies between each type of tree. For the Japanese magnolia trees for sale with Perfect Plants, Ann Magnolia Trees and Jane Magnolia trees are on the smaller side, each growing to about 10 feet tall and wide at full size. Alexandria Magnolia trees on the other hand will grow much higher. Alexandria magnolias will grow to 20 or 25 feet high with a similar branch width at full maturity.
Be sure to plan for the size of your Japanese magnolia tree before you order!
How Much Sun Does a Japanese Magnolia Need?
Japanese magnolia trees grow best in full sun with at most a small amount of shade. Try to give your Japanese magnolias 6 or more hours of sunlight each day by spacing it away from any large trees or on the shaded side of your home.
Japanese Magnolia Growing Zones
Japanese Magnolia Fertilizer & Watering Information
Japanese magnolias prefer fertile and well-drained soil but not dry or alkaline. Consider making a berm to plant your flowering tree if you have heavy or wet soil.
Once established, Japanese magnolias should not need watering, except during prolonged dry spells. They will need extra care during their first year and should be watered regularly if there is insufficient rainfall. No fertilizer is necessary, but a top dressing of slow-release fertilizer may be applied after the first year.
Japanese Magnolias Pruning
Japanese magnolias do not need to be pruned, but crossing or rubbing branches, winter damage, and vertical suckers should be removed. Large pruning wounds may be slow to heal over. When the tree is several years old, you can begin pruning to raise the canopy height to a comfortable level for access underneath.
Perfect Plants offers a variety of Japanese Magnolia Trees for sale, so be sure to order yours while supplies last.