|A vigorous plant blooming in pale purple. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, England, 1968.
Tall deciduous trees, reaching 115 feet tall in the wild, 30-60 feet in cultivation. Bark is grayish tan, twigs are smooth and tan colored, sometimes can become almost black. The terminal buds are covered with yellow hairs. Leaves are 6-12 inches long, dark green, smooth on the upper sides, pale green with fine hairs below. Fragrant flowers range from white to pale pink or crimson, and can reach 10 inches diameter. The stamens are rose colored. Native to Himalayan forests at 7000-11000 feet elevation. Once a staple tree in the forest it is much diminished due to its harvest for firewood and timber for planks and tea boxes. The species matures at 25-30 years of age, before that it sets no seeds. Many consider this the most beautiful of the magnolias. Flowers in early spring so it must be sheltered from frost and winds. It is often grafted on to different root stock for earlier maturing plants.