We have a big saucer magnolia growing next to the house here at the nursery. Seeing the magnificent big flowers is one of the things we look forward to most in April.
Early springs are not good for some magnolias. If the buds open too early, there is a high risk of frost killing off the flowers prematurely. In two of the last five years we’ve seen the buds on our tree swell open on March 31 only to freeze off in a hard frost the next night. Spring this year is not early, and we’re enjoying our magnolia in its full glory without worrying about the weather forecast.
This year we’re featuring a hybrid saucer magnolia called Jon Jon. This variety offers later flowering than most other saucer types, greatly reducing the risk of frost damage. The huge saucer-shaped flowers open creamy white with purple centers. Jon Jon matures to 15-20′ or so tall and wide.
Later on in the season we’ll talk about the Sweet Bay Magnolia, Magnolia virginiana, a summer-flowering East Coast native and one of our favorite trees.