star magnolia by red brick house

Star Magnolia – So Many Early Spring Blooms

When we moved into our newly purchased home last summer, I discovered that I had a Star Magnolia Tree at the front corner of my house. I had never had one before so I was excited to see how it would behave.

Well, this spring, I am really excited to see my Magnolia in full bloom. I believe this shrub or small tree to be a Star Magnolia and it’s blooming beautifully beginning in March!

Star magnolia blooming white flowers

My Star Magnolia may be a Royal Star Magnolia. I understand that this Royal version is a variety that is “dwarf” compared to the larger variety. My tree seems to be an older tree but is only about 10-15 feet tall and wide.

Facts Learned About My Star Magnolia

Hardy in USDA Zones 4-9

Blooming occurs before leaves appear in spring

Blooming time is only a few weeks

Freeze or hard frost can ruin the blooms

Soil should be well-drained, prefers slightly acid, mulch to protect roots

How and When To Prune Star Magnolia

My Star Magnolia may or may not have been neglected for a while, so it will need some pruning. ( See how this border on my house was when we first moved in)

Fuzzy shell of a star magnolia bud

The Star Magnolia blooms on old wood, so I really lucked out there. All the flowering buds were set all during last summer, so that resulted in a great showing this spring.

If I want to prune this year, I will do that after all the blooms have finished so that the shrub will work all year making buds for next spring’s flowers.

Trunk of a star magnolia tree

But I also want to shape the trunk and branches a little. I think the trunk has too many branches. I like the multi-trunk look but want to eliminate some of the excess.

How I manage to do that may end up on some kind of “blooper” video! LOL

Does Star Magnolia Have A Scent?

I have not been able to detect much of any scent with my Star Magnolia. However my “smeller” doesn’t work very well so I cannot say whether or not it does or doesn’t. My husband says he can smell a slight scent.

White blossom on star magnolia

All the information I can find over the internet says that it does have a wonderful scent. Maybe I can eventually find that too!

The blossom does have a very faint pink line of the outside of the petals of the flower. These photos show just that faint line of color. Can you see it?

Bud and flower of star magnolia

Star Magnolia In Ohio Is Deciduous

My tree or shrub here in Ohio is deciduous as opposed to evergreen. Here in Ohio, the Star Magnolia will loose its leaves during the winter season and emerge with new leaves AFTER the flowers in spring.

The leaves are large and tough, maybe even waxy. I was not sure if my tree was a magnolia at first. I thought it might be a huge overgrown rhododendron.

As it turns out, I have no large rhododendrons but I do have two azaleas that I have found so far. Badly in need of some iron, it appears.

budding azalea plant with yellowish leaves

I am anxiously to see if those will bloom and what color I have. There are just two and the buds have formed, but I just have to wait.

Actually it is really nice discovering what is in a new garden. Since we have purchased this older home, I get to discover what is still living here as it awakens throughout the year. Come explore with me this year!

I have only discovered a few flowers and plants (to my disappointment), but the year is young. I may find more!

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