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What Is a Magnolia Loebneri?

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  • Written By: Anna Harrison
  • Edited By: R. Halprin
  • Last Modified Date: 21 October 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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A Magnolia loebneri is a beautiful tree that belongs to the Magnoliaceae family. Also called Loebner magnolia, it produces showy pink or pale purple and white flowers that among the worlds most fragrant. Unlike many magnolias, it will tolerate some cold. It is prone to insect damage, however, and many different plant diseases.

This tree is a hybrid, the result of a cross between the Japanese Magnolia kobus species and Magnolia stellata. The first flowers of this variety bloomed in 1913 and it has been thriving ever since. Many of those first hybrids may still be in existence because magnolias have been known to survive for hundreds of years.

Magnolia loebneri can grow as high as 25 feet (7.5 m), but since it is slow growing it often treated as a shrub. It has a naturally rounded shape and bright green elongated oval leaves. The flowers appear in spring before the leaves. They are star shaped and consist of 12 long, thin petals that are white on the inside and change gradually to pink or pale purple at the edges. Magnolia blossoms are famous for their potent, citrus-like fragrance and are often used in making perfumes and colognes.

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In general, the Magnolia loebneri tree can be grown in either full sun or partial shade but should be planted in an area that is protected from wind. It does not like wet soil but will tolerate acidic soil and drought quite well. This tree can be grown in cold winter areas if protected but does best in warmer climates. Pruning should be kept to a minimum and is best done in either late winter or early spring to prevent the inner sap from bleeding out.

These trees can be propagated from seed, but it takes patience as they are not rapid growers. Cuttings can be taken from softwood branches in summer; they usually take root quickly, so this is the preferred method of propagation for many magnolia growers. New plants can also be started by layering, which is done by bending branches down to ground level and covering them with soil. They are left there until they root and then cut and planted elsewhere.

There are countless diseases that can harm Magnolia loebneri. Bacteria leaf spot is among the most common, as are leaf canker, spot anthracnose, powdery mildew and fungal spots. In addition, weevils, planthoppers, snails, thrips, and scale insects all feed on the leaves. They can cause significant damage and may even kill a young magnolia shrub, especially if eaten for two or three consecutive years. Magnolia loebneri is a good choice for deer-infested areas, however, because the animals seldom bother these trees.

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