Star Magnolia Leaves
The leaves are composed of three parts: the upper part (the main part), the lower part (which contains some seeds) and the middle part which is called “petals”. The petal consists of many small white hairs. These petals are attached to each other with a glue or glue-like substance called “cellulose” which makes them stick together.
When they dry out, it becomes difficult to remove them from one another. The petals are not very long and do not reach the ground. They are only about 1/2 inch wide. The flowers have a yellowish color and grow up to 5 inches high.
The petals are edible but their taste is unpleasant so they cannot be eaten raw. If you want to eat them, then you must peel off the outer layer first before eating them. You can either use a knife or your fingers.
The petals will fall off if you try to cut them with scissors.
If you want to make tea from the petals, then just boil water in which you put the petals and let it steep for at least 30 minutes. Then strain out the liquid and drink it immediately.
In Japan, where star magnolia trees are common, there is a traditional medicine known as “mizu no kage” (“star flower”). This medicine is very effective in curing several types of skin disease. Products such as lotions, ointments and patches that have been infused with the petals can be obtained at drug stores in Japan.
There are several medical studies that have been done on star magnolia. The petals contain many nutrients which are good for the skin. In traditional Chinese medicine, it is believed that the flowers can help with shortness of breath and treat coughs (especially whooping cough).
Star magnolias can be grown from seeds but it is very difficult. It is much easier to grow them from cuttings or grafting. Grafting involves joining a branch of one type of tree to the stem of another type of tree.
The advantage of this method is that you can get a mature tree that flowers sooner.
You can get several types of star magnolia trees such as “Royal Star”, “Fay Morgan” and “Little Gem”. There are also dwarf star magnolias which grow to a maximum height of five feet.
The “Royal Star” is the most common star magnolia tree sold in nurseries. It is a small tree with an oval-shaped canopy and can grow up to 20 feet if not trimmed. It has large, bright pink flowers and grows well in zones 5 through 9.
There is also a white variety that grows in zones 6 through 9. The “Little Gem” is a very small tree which can reach a maximum height of 3 feet. It has light pink flowers and grows in zones 6 through 9. The “Fay Morgan” grows up to 10 feet and has large, white flowers. It can be found in zones 7 through 9.
The star magnolia prefers USDA Hardiness Zones 5b through 9. These trees can tolerate a lot of heat and sun but prefers to grow in moist, well-drained soil. It does not tolerate cold temperatures so if you live in a colder climate then you should mulch it for protection during the winter months.
In zones 7 through 9, the tree can grow quite well in full sun but in colder zones, it prefers some shade during midday.
The star magnolia tree does not usually require an enormous amount of maintenance. It is drought tolerant and does need a lot of water. If you live in a location that gets very hot and there is not a lot of rain, then you should make sure that the tree’s root zone never dries out.
It likes soil that has good drainage. You can feed it with a slow-release fertilizer in the early spring. Apply the fertilizer at half the recommended rate.
The magnolia’s flowers are pollinated by bees and other flying insects. If you live in an area that gets very cold in the winter, you can cut off the tree’s flowers before the first frost to prevent it from expending a lot of its energy producing seeds instead of growing roots, leaves and stems. You can also do the same with any dead or damaged branches to prevent them from rotting.
You need to prune the magnolia regularly so that it can grow as best as possible. Starting in the summer after planting, begin by removing any weak or dead branches. You can cut them off right above the cut on the trunk.
Try to prune out any crossing branches and especially those that are growing towards the center of the tree and shading the center. If you notice any branches that are growing in a strange direction, you can correct this now. This step should be done for the first five years. After that, you should only do light maintenance such as removing any dead or diseased branches or those that are crossing/obstructing growth.
Growing a star magnolia is not particularly difficult but they can be time consuming to grow. It is important to plant it in the right location so that it has the best chance at survival. They can grow in most types of soil as long as they are planted in a well-drained location.
These trees also prefer acidic soil with a pH of between 5.0 and 6.2. If the soil pH is too high or low it can affect the health of your tree. You can have your soil tested by your local county extension office to see if any adjustments need to be made.
These magnolias are prone to a few different types of diseases and insects. The most common issue is leaf spots which are caused by various fungi. It will cause the leaves to look darker and have spots on them.
This will not usually kill the tree but it can be detrimental if left unchecked. You can try to prevent this by pruning out all of the diseased leaves when the symptoms first show themselves. If the disease has already spread you can apply a fungicide. Other issues that you may have to deal with are spider mites, scale insects, and aphids.
As far as pests go, the star magnolia is not particularly prone to many. The major pest that will plague the tree is the corn earworm moth. This moth is also known as the tomato fruitworm moth.
It is a brown moth with yellow stripes and measures about 1.5 inches across. These moths like to lay their eggs on the underside of the leaves. The eggs turn into caterpillars that will eat the leaves of your tree when they hatch. The good news is you can spray the tree with a Bt solution to kill the eggs and larvae.
If you want to get the best look out of your magnolia you should prune it every year. Cut off any dead branches and remove any crossing or overlapping ones. You can also cut out any weak or thin branches.
When the tree flowers only leave three or four of the largest flowers per branch so that it doesn’t waste all of its energy on flowers and not on growing.
These magnolias can grow to be a really big tree so make sure you plant it in the right location. If you live in an area that gets a lot of strong winds, it could uproot the tree. You will need to keep the area around the base of the tree clear so that it can get the water and nutrients that it needs.
It also needs to be able to support its weight as well.
When growing a star magnolia from seed, you need to start the process a couple of months before the last frost in your area. The tree can grow in most types of soil but it does need well-draining soil so it doesn’t get water logged. You should mix 3 parts sand with 1 part compost and then add some general purpose fertilizer.
You should also add bone meal and bulb fertilizer as well.
Put the mixed soil in a bucket and make a small hole in the middle. Place the seeds in the hole and cover with soil. Make sure you keep the seeds well watered until they start to sprout.
Once they have sprouted, you can plant them in their permanent location. Transplanting can be a little rough so it is best to do it when the trees are little.
When they are little, star magnolias should be planted about 2 to 3 feet apart. Once they get bigger, you should space them about 10 to 12 feet apart. You don’t want them to overcrowd each other as that could lead to disease and pest issues.
Growing magnolias from seed can take a couple of years before they start to look like trees. The saplings look like a small bush when they first grow. They start to resemble a tree when they are 3 or 4 feet tall.
As far as maintenance goes, after you plant them you don’t have much else to do except keep an eye on the trees and making sure they are getting what they need. You should keep the area underneath the tree clear so it can get light and air and you shouldn’t walk on the roots.
These trees are part of the magnolia family and as such they do have some dangerous parts to them. The bark and leaves can be toxic if eaten or touched and can cause a rash. The flowers can also cause dermatitis in some people.
If you are prone to allergies, you might want to think twice about having an evergreen magnolia tree in your yard. When the flowers bloom they release pollen into the air and some people are severely allergic to it. The symptoms range from a runny nose and itchy eyes to asthma attacks and can be pretty severe.
It has even been known to cause death in extreme cases.
The good news is that the flowers don’t last too long and after they fall off, you won’t have to deal with it for another year. You can try to plant your tree in a location that doesn’t get too much wind so that the pollen doesn’t travel too far. You should also keep your windows closed when the tree blooms.
These trees are really beautiful and can add a nice touch to your landscape design. They grow very well in the South but will still grow in other locations provided you give them what they need. Just be aware of the dangers and keep them away from young children or those who are allergic.
How to Care for a Star Magnolia
Star magnolias are deciduous trees that grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 9, depending on the species.
They grow 70 to 90 feet tall and 40 to 60 feet wide. These fast-growing trees usually don’t flower until they reach at least 10 years old, but they produce fragrant white flowers in spring that age to yellow and then brown.
Sources & references used in this article:
Some old and new interspecific Magnolia hybrids by SA Spongberg – Arnoldia, 1976 – JSTOR
America’s Magnolias by G Nelson – … . American Horticultural Society, Alexandria, VA, USA, 2008 – gilnelson.com
Care of ornamental plants in the landscape by GL Wade, B Sparks – 2009 – athenaeum.libs.uga.edu
Flowering Shrubs and Small trees for the South by M Harrison – 2009 – books.google.com
The therapeutic qualities of plants by KL Haas, R McCartney – Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture, 1996 – JSTOR
Japanese Art of Miniature Trees and Landscapes: Their Creation, Care, and Enjoyment by G Halford-MacLeod, GM Halford – 2012 – books.google.com
Magnolia Star Route by AW Hunton, KM Johnson – 1920 – Ams PressInc
Frederick by RL Henderson – 2007 – ir.library.msstate.edu