Magnolia Bracken's Brown Beauty

doniki(z5/6 NE Ohio)June 28, 2004

I just wanted to see if anyone out there was having success growing the Bracken's Brown Beauty Southern Magnolia in zones 5/6. I have seen them being sold more regularly in Ohio nurseries and wanted people's opinions before I made any purchases. I already have an Edith Bogue Magnolia which has done fairly well, with minimal leaf burn at -10F, but does not flower as much as I would like. Any info on BBB would be appreciated or any other cold hardy Southern Magnolia...

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BBB was planted extensively on the campus of U of MO-Columbia. Seemed to tolerate the conditions there just fine , though many were in somewhat protected courtyard settings, etc. Can't recall now (10 years down the road) how much, if any, winter leaf burn was common on those trees.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2004 at 12:16PM
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cory_in_iowa(z4 Iowa)

Loses all it's leaves in the winter and doesn't put em back on until halfway through May. It's only been in the ground for a year but it does have 2 blooms on it this year already.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2005 at 6:34PM
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I made the mistake of trying to transplant an established Magnolia (Edith Bogue) last fall. It was about 6' tall but in an area too close to other trees. Well it's now almost July and most of the leaves are off. It shed them during the winter. Although much of the bark is still green, there are only little shoots trying to emerge from below the graft line. Should I give up on this tree and replace it .....preferably with a BBB variety?

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 12:27PM
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rockman50(6b SEMASS)

I have a BBB here in coastal SE Mass. It has been growing vigorously for 4 years. The plant receives full winter sun, and as a consequence, does burn a bit each winter. But a little wilt-pruf in the fall does the trick and I have never lost a branch. Seems very hardy in zone 6. My biggest problem is heavy wet snow disfiguring the tree. I recommend regular pruning to keep it tight.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 2:33PM
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cliff98(z6 OH)

I have no idea if you did plant a BBB since this thread was resurrected from the dead of last year, but the city of Cincinnati has used BBB extensively as a street tree. They do seem to bloom more than Edith Bogue, but not by much from my observations. I still like EB better though.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 9:07PM
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doniki(z5/6 NE Ohio)

Yea, actually I did plant 2 Bracken's last year... It was late August (probably too late). They were about 5ft tall, and very nice and full. We really didn't have that bad of a winter... It got down to about -5F one night, and a couple of nights around 0F. We did have consitant freezing though. They completely defoliated and had about 12inches of dieback... I expected the leaf burn, but not the dieback... I was really dissapointed... I have had an Edith Bogue for 5 or 6 years and it has never burned or had dieback. I fertilzed the two BBB's this spring and they have now "refoliated" and are starting to put on some growth. I had read that BBB will almost always defoliate the first year in the "north", and eventually harden off to the cold... I sure hope that is true- is it???. I first bought Edith in 1999 (I think) and the nursery (in Akron) has a larger one on display (maybe 20ft??) I was told that particular tree died completely to the ground the first winter, then resprouted and eventually hardened off. I keep track of it, and haven't noticed much damage over the years. The 20ft Edith Bogue planted at the nursery seems to be a good grower and does bloom well... I don't know how fast BBB grows, The Edith Bogue I have puts on about 12 inches a year. I'm beginning to see M. grandiflora's sold all over NE Ohio... Edith Bogue, Bracken's, DD Blanchard, Little Gem... I don't know how well these will do in NE Ohio...

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 10:06PM
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cliff98(z6 OH)

BBB's grow much slower in comparison to EB's here in Cincy. I am sure that like most trees and shrubs more commonly seen in the south, most Mags do harden off when their roots become more established. Crepes are like that here. They will suffer significant dieback for the first 2-4 years but after that, they rarely suffer dieback, even after fairly severe winters.
My EB planted in 2000 was 3.5-4ft. tall, now it is almost 10ft tall, but has probably increased in overall density by 10x!

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 10:36PM
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rockman50(6b SEMASS)

My observation locally is the EB is more hardy than BBB. The EB write-ups also claim that it is the most hardy southern magnolia. EB also has a more stiff branching structure, so it holds up better to heavy wet snow. My BBB gets very "floppy" if I don't prune it. My first attempt at southern magnolia here in zone 6 was a Little Gem. But I do not recommend it for zone 6. Mine died completely during its first year. I noticed that when the temperature crept below +10 degrees, the leaves would stop dropping off.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2005 at 9:39AM
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iowapalmz5(Zone 5)

Just wondering how everyone's southern magnolia's in z5 and z6 have faired this winter. My Brackens leaves have all pretty much burned this winter, we've had an unusally bad one and the leaves on the magnolia grandifloras are about 60% burned. I'm not too worried though, they have all come back great for the last three years. Despite being in Z5, they have grown about another foot or two each summer. How are everyone else's?

    Bookmark   February 17, 2008 at 8:38PM
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krazyaroider(Hamburg, NY 14075 Zone 6)

Here is my report on my Southern Magnolias in Hamburg, NY.
I am zone 6 and 1.5 mile from Lake Erie, so I have the moderating effect of the lake...

Magnolia update:
1)Unnamed clone from Appalachian Gardens - This has burnt leaves, but regrows them completely in May. You cannot tell that the tree had burnt leaves...

Pocano - Looking good/unburnt leaves at this point...

Edith Bogue - looks green and unburnt...

Brackens Brown Beauty - Looks very good/unburnt at this point...

I cannot wait until the growing season begins to see them grow as all except the unnamed clone from Appalachian Gardens are "enduring" their first winter...

    Bookmark   March 1, 2008 at 9:43AM
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rockman50(6b SEMASS)

I have a large BBB that receives full winter sun all day. It has no burn at all this year. We have had an easy winter, with no severe cold or wind, and lots of rain, with bare soft ground--at least at my location on the far southern coast of Mass--which is borderline zone 7. The same holds true for my other more tender broadleaved evergreens such as Aucuba and cherrly laurels.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2008 at 11:28AM
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krazyaroider(Hamburg, NY 14075 Zone 6)

My BBB is in an area with full sun, but I had some old pressboard that I put around the tree so I will get sun from above, but no reflected snow from the ground. It appears to have no damage from our winter. the leaves appear the same as they looked last summer.
All of my trees are cutting grown - no taking chances on bottom graft being less hardy than top graft - this I believed happened with a BBB from bad, bad Carroll Gardens. I did not know the BBB was even grafted - they do not even advertise BBB any more - I wonder why?!!
My other trees, Edith Bogue, Pocano look good and of course my two Mg '24 Below' remain to still be planted out in early spring past the "deep freeze" time - probably Arbor Day in April.

Except for the unnamed clone from Appalachian Gardens, BBB, EB and Pocano are going through their first winter. The unnamed clone has gone through at least 4 winters, altough it burns badly, it regrows leaves so good that you never know it lost leaves from winter burning.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 11:31AM
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Whenever I go to Saint Louis, I see many mature versions of this tree, very old, but about 20-40 feet high in some cases, like a tall column, that barely tapers until the very top. Where I live, lots of younger version since it is a newer area. Not all bloom a lot, but these trees are beautiful, and the few flowers I have seen are amazing! I am not sure how old this question is, but if you haven't planted it, get it now! They sell out very, very quickly in my area. And all the landscapers are using them with the new neighborhoods and corporations moving into the area.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2010 at 11:03PM
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Hello all! Posting this question here since I live in Cleveland and the lake softens the temps up here somewhat.
I planted a 9ft. BBB last year and it was glorious. It is at the corner of our garage, which shelters it from the east, and the shadow of the house shelters it from the south. I lost about four branches to the wind storm. It seems to be doing alright, but did suffer from wind burn (?) pretty bad. Is there anything anyone knows of that I could do to help this tree in the late fall to protect it? I wondered if a loose burlap wrap would help? Or spraying the leaves with a wilt proof? I know it is a youngster-just want to do everything I can to help it grow and make it look healthier.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 11:48AM
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Which one of these flowers more and which has better fragrance?

Any comparison to swamp magnolia or 'nothern bell'?

    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 4:07AM
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