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What might it be?

Posted by shadowoak Powhatan, Virginia (My Page) on
Sat, Mar 31, 07 at 22:57

My wife and I bought an 150 year old house about a year ago and have been working on the renovation ever since. At times, we have concentrated on the yard in order to try to save some of the priceless trees and shrubs that were neglected in the past few years when the previous owner was unable to do much at all to take care of the place. I've now managed to catalog most everything there is around the property, but there is one tree that still escapes me.
It is obvioulsy either directly or closely related to the magnolias. The flowers and fruits look very much like anything else you'd see from the family. White to creamy white, hand-sized blooms. It has light gray, fairly smooth bark. The tree is around thirty feet tall, multi-trunked, with a funky, irregular shape. The leaves are probably the most distinctive feature; being around 24 inches long and about six to eight wide, and sort of soft and fleshy. It is deciduous.
Any ideas?
Right now, other than taking down a few dead branches it is seems to be in good shape, so my curiosity is just that.
Thanks in advance for any help y'all may be able to proffer!
Cheers and Fairwinds,

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: What might it be?

How about Magnolia macrophylla?

I cannot say that I have ever heard of this tree. What I did was go to and search for the genus Magnolia and scroll through the matches. There were a couple others with larger leaves as well (like Magnolia ashei). An image search for "Magnolia macrophylla" over a Google turns up some pretty cool images.

- Brent

RE: What might it be?

possibly magnolia acuminata (cucumber magnolia)?
for pictures--

RE: What might it be?

Thanks for the help!
I think y'all might be spot-on. It looks for all the world like the photos of the Bigleaf Magnolia. Now, I just need the leaves and flowers to come in to make sure. (though the buds are a sight to see on their own- looking like hundreds of huge bear claws all over the tree)
All-in-all I think this is one of the best of the amazing trees and shrubs we've managed to find in the maze of weeds and invasive trees that had overgrown the property before we bought it.
Thanks again for the help!
Cheers and Fairwinds,
Brett Silver

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