In the 60’s and 70’s, many of suburbia’s front lawns were adorned with that one special specimen tree, the Saucer Magnolia. Even in the urban areas, these trees were a hot item. If you go into Boston’s Back Bay, Saucer Magnolias are still a staple ornamental tree. Today, there are numerous varieties of these Asian-type Magnolias i.e., early flowering that are available in the market, some in breathtaking variations. There are yellow varieties like Magnolia ‘Elizabeth’ and ‘Butterfly’ that are hardy, robust growers with a magnificent bloom. One variety truly worth seeking out is ‘Daybreak’. Accurately named, this flower has subtle hues of the sunrise – soft lavender, pink and yellow tones like the early morning sky.
Many of these types of Magnolias are currently in bloom. One word of caution with Asian Magnolias - early spring frost can damage the blossoms. Provide full sun and protection from prevailing winds and if at all possible, locate in a spot with northern exposure. This can delay the bloom cycle. If you haven’t been paying attention, this season’s display is simply spectacular. So check it out before the colors fade.
As the Swiss Architect, Le Corbusier said, ““Architecture is the learned game, correct and magnificent, of forms assembled in the light.” Okay, that may be more mind-boggling than inspirational. If you look at the photo, you can see why form assembled in the light is so important.
Photo of Magnolia 'Elizabeth' - Photo by Greg Bilowz
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© 2009 Ann St. Jean-Bilowz/Bilowz Associates Inc. (including all photographs, unless otherwise noted in Annie's Gardening Corner are the property of Bilowz Associates Inc. and shall not be reproduced in any manner nor are they to be assigned to any third party without the expressed written permission and consent of Bilowz Associates Inc.)