Magnolias of all shapes and sizes

Coco magnolia closeup

There are a lot of scented bloomers in our garden right now, and I wanted to share some photos of our magnolia varieties. All of them are in bloom right now! Magnolias are some of the oldest flowers around. They evolved before there were bees, and so have a rather primitive flower structure. They originated millions of years ago in North America and separately, in Asia. We grow mostly Asian varieties, though the one below is a dwarf variety of the beautiful tree you'll find all over the Southern United States.

dwarf magnolia

Earlier this year our Coco Magnolia bloomed for a short period of time, but it is showing new buds again! The first picture I took on my phone one morning while the flower was still open. The second picture was later that same day after it had closed up. The third is the next day, when I found the remaining bundle of petals on the ground. I was amazed the petals didn't separate, but fell off like a porcelain urn.

Magnolia coco 1

Magnolia coco

Coco magnolia closeup



The next photo is known as the Banana Shrub (Michelia figo), because of its distinctly banana candy scent--it is almost too sweet for my liking! We have two of these slow growing shrubs. As of this season, they both have bloomed. You might still see a few late flowers on this plant if you come this week.

Banana Shrub Bloom

Banana shrub bud

Perhaps my favorite Magnolia bloom is our Pak Lan tree (Magnolia x alba). The pictures below are of our larger specimen, with white blooms. We also have a yellow variety which is probably the original Magnolia champaca. In the afternoon and evenings, the aroma of these flowers fill the valley. Our trees will probably remain in bloom for the next month, so come check it out!

Magnolia x alba

Magnolia x alba 2