Best grown in moist, organically rich, well-drained loams in full sun to part shade. Generally intolerant of soil extremes (dry or wet). Intolerant of most urban pollutants. Flowers may be injured by late spring frosts. St. Louis is on the northern edge of the growing range for this magnolia, so consider planting it in a location protected from winter winds. May take 6-7 years before first blooms appear.
Magnolia denudata is native to eastern and southern China, Yulan magnolia is a small deciduous tree that typically grows 30-40’ tall with a rounded spreading crown. It is also sometimes grown as a large shrub. Obovate leaves (to 6” long) are dark green above and light green below. Fragrant goblet-shaped white flowers (to 4-6” across), typically with 9 thick white petals, bloom in spring. Flowers bloom before the leaves emerge, as per the specific epithet of denudata (barren or leafless). Flowers give way to cone-like fruits that mature to red in late summer, releasing individual red coated seeds suspended on slender threads at maturity.
Synonymous with and formely known as Magnolia heptapeta.
Genus name honors Pierre Magnol, French botanist (1638-1715). However, this species has been grown in Chinese gardens for at least 1000 years.
No serious insect or disease problems.
Beautiful small specimen flowering tree for lawns.