Butterflies (yellow magnolia) Magnolia acuminata 'Butterflies'??

Discussion in 'Magnoliaceae' started by rockandroller, Apr 7, 2016.

  1. rockandroller

    rockandroller Active Member

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    Does anyone have experience with this variety? I'm leaning towards getting one, but not 100% sure it'll be a good fit for my location.

    I'm in the Okanagan (zone5) and these 'Butterflies' trees are reputed to be hardy enough. Plenty of Magnolias around, the city has planted dozens of the smallish white star-shaped ones, and I see some of the bigger pink sorts from time to time. Local nursery is selling Magnolia Liliiflora "Negra", if that's any indication...

    Anyway, I have a spot that would be great for a tree that grows no more than about 20 feet tall when mature. ( power lines above that). It would be partially shaded on one (south-west) side by a two story building, (protected from our sometimes scorching hot summer sun) and (until it gets to be ten feet tall) it would be protected from the sometimes ferocious winter winds on the east side by a fence. Still should garner a good 5 hours of sunshine, we get a lot of sunshine here!

    Maybe-ButterfliesMagnolia.png

    Not all that much room to spread until it clears the fence, I'm looking to put it in the corner of the property, about six feet from the fence (and the building). I'm hopeful there's a way to train or prune these to grow more vertically, so it's not eventually impinging on the fence/house. I realize there are dwarf varieties that would never spread more than ten feet - but until it's at least ten feet TALL, it will be almost invisible from the street. ( And it's really a long-term neighborhood beautification project, as I would rarely be able to view it from inside my property... )

    It will be the only tree (indeed the only flora) in that part of the lot - it's a steep slope there now, just dirt covered in gravel. So plenty of room for its roots to spread out, I imagine...

    Anyway, if anyone has grown "Butterflies", I'd be interested in your comments!! Or if anyone can suggest an equally showy tree that naturally tends to not be too spreading, and tops out around 18-22 feet when mature...
     
  2. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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  3. rockandroller

    rockandroller Active Member

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    Thanks Jim!

    Planted mine today - it's just a 3-foot stick with a few buds and a (healthy looking) root ball, so it has a long way to go! :-)
     
  4. rockandroller

    rockandroller Active Member

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    Sadly, this one (imported by mail from PEI) died after making 8 or ten very large oval leaves - which all just fell off quite early in the autumn. Did not revive after the winter, so I pulled it out, did some soil amendment, and planted another more local variety, ( more mature ), from the local garden center. For a spindly six foot tree it had lots of flowers, but suffered from a lot of brown and twisted leaves coming soon after, quite alarming and local garden center was no help. I have mulched the heck out of it for winter - hoping for the best ( will start a new thread with pics of last year woes)
     
  5. Ron B

    Ron B Esteemed Contributor 10 Years

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    Brown and twisted leaves could have been lilac blight (Pseudomonas) or frost injury. During any future planting of long term plants (anything other than annual flowers or vegetables) do not amend individual planting holes or other small areas, it is not beneficial. With the primary issue being how this procedure affects the movement of water into and out of the amended area. Improve the rooting environment by mulching instead.

    Otherwise 'Butterflies' is derived from a crossing of Magnolia acuminata 'Fertile Myrtle' with M. denudata. And is not a pure form of M. acuminata as you have listed it in the thread title. The spelling of the other kind is 'Nigra'. Anyway if having continuing problems with wet climate subjects like deciduous magnolias maybe look for a copy of Searles, The Garden of Joy for ideas of interior climate adapted alternatives.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019 at 11:31 AM
    rockandroller and Daniel Mosquin like this.

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