Magnolia denudata (Lilytree, Yulan) is a deciduous flowering tree native to China. It is one of the oldest cultivated magnolia species and is highly regarded for its elegant and fragrant blossoms. Here is some information about Magnolia denudata:
Appearance: Lilytree is a medium-sized tree that typically reaches heights of 30 to 40 feet (9 to 12 meters) with a similar spread. It has an upright, pyramidal form when young, gradually becoming more rounded with age. The branches are usually spreading and create an open canopy. The bark is gray and smooth. The leaves are large and ovate, around 5 to 8 inches (12 to 20 centimeters) long. They are a dark green color and provide an attractive backdrop for the flowers.
Flowers: The flowers of Lilytree are the highlight of the tree. They are large and showy, measuring around 3 to 5 inches (7.5 to 12.5 centimeters) in diameter. The flowers are white and have a delicate, lily-like appearance, hence the common name "Lilytree." They consist of multiple petals that are slightly fragrant. The flowers bloom in early spring before the leaves emerge, creating a stunning display of pure white against the bare branches.
Fragrance: The blossoms of Lilytree emit a delightful fragrance that is often described as sweet and citrusy. The scent adds to the tree's allure and can be particularly noticeable when the tree is in full bloom.
Cultural Significance: Lilytree has a rich cultural history in China, where it has been cultivated for centuries. It holds symbolic importance and is associated with purity, beauty, and spirituality. It is often depicted in traditional Chinese art, poetry, and literature.
Landscape Use: Lilytree is highly prized as an ornamental tree in gardens, parks, and landscapes. Its elegant flowers make it a standout specimen tree, especially when planted in a location where the blossoms can be easily admired. The tree's graceful form and attractive bark also contribute to its overall visual appeal.
Lilytree prefers full sun to partial shade and well-drained soil. It can tolerate a variety of soil types but prefers a slightly acidic to neutral pH. The tree benefits from regular watering, especially during dry periods. It is generally low-maintenance once established but may require occasional pruning to remove any dead or crossing branches.