The saucer magnolia, Magnolia × soulangeana is a hybrid plant in the genus Magnolia. It is also commonly referred to as Chinese Magnolia and Japanese Magnolia.
It is a deciduous small tree or broad shrub with large, fragrant, early-blooming flowers in various shades of white, pink, and purple.
When in flower, it is spectacular when in bloom and, because of its small stature, 20-25’, it is a good choice for plantings near utility lines. It can be expected to increase in height by about two feet annually.
The saucer magnolia was bred by French plantsman Étienne Soulange-Bodin (1774–1846), a retired cavalry officer in Napoleon's army. At his château de Fromont near Paris, he crossed Magnolia denudata with M. liliiflora in 1820.
From France, the hybrid quickly spread to England, other parts of Europe, and North America. There are now over 100 named cultivars of this plant.
This is one of the first trees to bloom in the spring and may flower sporadically throughout the rest of the year in our area. It blooms at a very young age.
It has few pests or diseases. It is moderately salt tolerant and tolerant of alkaline soils. It is also resistant of high winds making it an excellent plant for our area.
It will grow in full sun or partial shade and requires damps soil, preferably with moderate to high organic content.