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Magnolia tripetala, Umbrella Magnolia, Umbrella-tree

Magnolia tripetala

Umbrella Magnolia, Umbrella-tree
Family: Magnoliaceae
Origin: Southeastern United States, The Appalachian Mountains region
Big tree taller than 20 ftSemi-shadeRegular waterModerate waterWhite, off-white flowersFragrantDeciduous plantSubtropical, mature plant cold hardy at least to 30s F for a short time

This fast growing deciduous tree has large shiny leaves, spreading from stout stems. In a natural setting the Umbrella magnolia can grow 45-50ft (15 m) tall. The flowers are large, 3 to 5 inches (15-25 cm) diameter, with six to nine creamy-white petals and a large green style, which later develops into a cone-like fruit 4 to 6 inches (10-12 cm) long. The fruit turning pink when mature, later turning brown. The fruit contains several pink to red seeds, matures in late summer to early fall. The flowers are intensely fragrant, but may be unpleasant up close. Blooming Time is Late Spring/Early Summer.

The leaves are alternate, simple, very large, 12 to 24 inches (30-60 cm) long, lacking "ear-lobes" at base, margin entire, mostly obovate, green and shiny above, paler below, often crowded near ends of twig. Diamond-shaped leaves look like the spokes of an umbrella, which gives the Umbrella tree its common name. The leaves turn yellow in the autumn.

These trees are attractive and easy to grow. Requires consistently moist soil; partial to full shade; do not let dry out between watering. Frost tolerant (hardness from USDA zone 5 to USDA zone 9). Soil pH requirements are from 5.6 to 6.0 (acidic) to 6.6 to 7.5 (neutral).

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