bigleaf magnolia
Magnolia macrophylla
  • LEAVES: alternate, simple, deciduous; 12 to 30 inches; ovate, cordate base, silvery below; largest simple leaf in a native tree
  • FLOWER: white, 10 to 15 inch diameter; April to May
  • FRUIT: ovoid, 3-5 inch, purplish and hairy
  • TWIGS: stout, brittle, densely tomentose when young; 1.75 to 2 inch bud with white hairs; large diaphragmed pith
  • BARK: smooth gray
  • FORM: small tree, < 50 ft, <10 inch dbh; spreading tropical-looking crown; stump sprouts
  • HABITAT: moist well drained, protected sites
  • RANGE: Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and southern Appalachian Mountains
  • USES: ornamental, often rare due to local collection, poor seed set, and low seed viability; wood is not used
  • Best Recognition Features:
    1. very large leaves with cordate base
    2. large brittle twigs
    3. smooth, light gray bark