Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Foot Wide Magnolia Blooms in the Herb Garden

*Magnolia x   veitchii? in bloom in the Herb Garden
Magnolia x veitchii?  being admired by staff. (l to r) Arboretum herb garden curator Theresa Rachau and Irene Chang.

 Located in the herb garden, this large flowering Magnolia is blooming right now. The monster flowers can be up to a foot across, and they have an odor much like peppermint. The identity of this beauty is a little bit of a puzzle, as it was accessioned . It has  some characteristics of Magnolia campbellii (the large bloom and pleasant odor) but was accessioned as Magnolia x veitchii, a cross made by British horticulturalist Peter Veitch between M. campbellii and M. denudata in 1907.

* At first I thought this was Magnolia campbellii var. albe 'Stybing White'; but it turns out that this Magnolia was accessioned before M. campbellii var. alba 'Strybing White''s introduction in 1962. 

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