Magnolia quinquepeta

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Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles




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Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Lassonia quinquepeta Buc’hoz; M. liliiflora Desrouss.; M. obovata Willd., not Thunb.; M. purpurea Curtis

See the main work, under M. liliiflora, and also this supplement, under [M. denudata].

M quinquepeta × M stellata

(M. kobus var. stellata )

These hybrids were raised in the US National Arboretum, Washington DC., various clones of the two species being used. The crosses were made in 1955 and 1956 and eight selections were released in 1968 and described in Morris Arboretum Bulletin, Vol. 19(2), pp. 26-9 (1968); see also Treseder, Magnolias, pp. 152-3, for more detailed descriptions. These hybrids owe to M. quinquepeta their comparatively large leaves, the colouring of the flowers and their late flowering time, from late April well into May, while the numerous tepals of some clones and, in varying degree, the fragrance of the flowers, come from M. stellata. At the time of release the original plants were 612 to 10 ft high, mostly somewhat less in spread.Of the eight, the one generally considered the best is ‘Susan’. This has long, narrow flower-buds, opening to 4 to 6 in. wide, with mostly six twisted tepals, which are a fine reddish purple inside and out. The flowers are borne abundantly over a long period from the end of April, even on young plants.Of the others, the most promising in the Windsor collection are ‘Ann’, which is somewhat earlier than ‘Susan’; tepals six to eight, remaining erect in the open flower, reddish purple on the outside, paling towards the margins; and ‘Jane’, later than ‘Susan’, the fragrant cup-shaped flowers about 4 in. wide, opening during May, with eight to ten tepals, which are reddish purple on the outside, white within.’Betty’ has flowers up to 8 in. wide, with twelve to eighteen tepals, and ‘Ricki’ is similar, though the flowers are slightly smaller.


The flowering period of this cultivar is longer than stated, until the end of June and thus some six weeks in all. It is not entirely hardy, as incompletely ripened growths may be killed back in severe winters, with loss of flower.


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